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Doctor insights on: Viral Infection Vs Bacterial Infection Symptoms

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What are the different symptoms of a viral infection and a bacterial infection?

What are the different symptoms of a viral infection and a bacterial infection?

Not much difference: Generally people recover from viral infections a little faster but that is certainly not always the case. Influenza and other serious viruses can take quite a while to recover from. Symptoms depend on where the virus is invading and can be very similar to infections. Bacterial infections tend to be more localized. ...Read more

Dr. Bernard Seif
9 doctors shared insights

Infection (Definition)

Infections are invasions of some other organism (fungus, bacteria, parasite) or viruses into places where they do not belong. For instance, we have normal gut bacteria that live within us without causing problems; however, when those penetrate the bowel wall and enter the bloodstream, ...Read more


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What is the difference between how viral infections and bacterial infections affect the body?

What is the difference between how viral infections and bacterial infections affect the body?

Ggod question!: There are some clear differences, which one ought to know. Most virus infections cause a short illness of 3-5 days and then go away on their own. We do not have good antibiotics against the virus(this is typical scenario for upper respiratory infections(one of the common infections). Bacterial infections are more serious and definitely require antibiotics, otherwise you will get very sick , ending. ...Read more

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Do children with Chronic benign neutrophenia also have problem fighting viral infections or have problem only fighting bacterial infections?

Do children with Chronic benign neutrophenia also have problem fighting viral infections or have problem only fighting bacterial infections?

Bacterial only: Unless there is an additional immune disorder affecting lymphocytes, one would expect a person with chronic benign neutropenia to have more problems with recurrent bacterial infections and be able to respond normally to viral infections. ...Read more

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Can you tell me when does a viral infection become a bacterial infection?

Can you tell me when does a viral infection become a bacterial infection?

Never.: A virus is one pathogen and a bacteria is another. What occurs sometimes is that you get a cold, ie. Virus and then with the mucus you get a supperimpossed bacterial infection. ...Read more

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What is the difference between a bacterial infection and a viral infection?

What is the difference between a bacterial infection and a viral infection?

Different germ types: Bacteria are larger germs, and they can live in a broth or culture dish in a lab, or sometimes in soup, egg salad, etc... Treatment is with "antibiotics", but the exact term should be "antibacterials". Viruses are much smaller, and cannot reproduce on their own. Viruses have to invade other cells, such as our own cells, and use those cells to make new viruses. Anti-virals are used to stop viruses. ...Read more

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What is the difference between viral infection and bacterial infection? I'm currently having viral infection according to my doctor.

What is the difference between viral infection and bacterial infection? I'm currently having viral infection according to my doctor.

Virus v Bacteria: The simple answer, and not trying to sound flip, is that viruses causes viral illnesses, bacteria cause bacterial infections. Antibiotics can help with bacterial infections, but only some antiviral medications are available to help with the course of some viral illnesses. Most viral illnesses just have to run their course. ...Read more

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Please explain what differences are there in the (human) immune response to a viral infection vs. A bacterial infection?

Short answer: It depends on the individual organism. For example some viruses trigger the immune system to mount a cytotoxic cellular response in which the infected cell is killed. Some bacteria are killed directly by antibodies in conjunction with the complement system. You usually can't differentiate viral vs bacterial infection based on how you feel or what it looks like in the case of a throat infection. ...Read more

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How do you treat a bacterial infection in the eyes? How about a viral infection?

How do you treat a bacterial infection in the eyes? How about a viral infection?

Antibiotics; time: Bacterial infections of the eyes are treated with antibiotics specific for the likely causal organism, whereas viral infections are ordinarily managed with irrigation, cleansing the eyelids, artificial tears, decongestants, and occassional antiinflammatory agents like steroids for complicated keratitis. Specific viral infections like herpes simplex have antiviral medications for treatment. ...Read more

Virus (Definition)

A virus is a small infectious agent that can replicate only inside the living cells of an organism. Viruses can infect all types of organisms, from animals and plants ...Read more


Dr. Heidi Fowler
2,013 doctors shared insights

Bacterial Infections (Definition)

Bacteria are tiny organisms that can only be seen with a microscope. When certain bacteria enter the body, they can cause infections that must ...Read more