2 doctors weighed in:
How do I know if its a cold, pneumonia or bronchitis?
2 doctors weighed in

Dr. Sue Ferranti
Internal Medicine
In brief: Difficult...
It is difficult to know which of these you have based on symptoms alone.
A typical cold has less severe symptoms compared to the other two; less severe cough, usually no fever, more nasal congestion. Bronchitis has a more severe cough than a cold but the other symptoms may be the same. Pneumonia has symptoms very similar to bronchitis, although it may be a but more severe. Tests may be needed.

In brief: Difficult...
It is difficult to know which of these you have based on symptoms alone.
A typical cold has less severe symptoms compared to the other two; less severe cough, usually no fever, more nasal congestion. Bronchitis has a more severe cough than a cold but the other symptoms may be the same. Pneumonia has symptoms very similar to bronchitis, although it may be a but more severe. Tests may be needed.
Dr. Sue Ferranti
Dr. Sue Ferranti
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Dr. HARRY OPSIMOS
Pediatrics - Pulmonology
In brief: There is overlap
A cold often has congestion, stuffy/runny nose, fever and it's mostly an upper airway infection.
Pneumonia is a lower airway, lung infection and has fever, cough, shortness of breath. Bronchitis is inflammation of the larger air tubes in your airway and often has cough, fever. All 3 are often caused by viruses.

In brief: There is overlap
A cold often has congestion, stuffy/runny nose, fever and it's mostly an upper airway infection.
Pneumonia is a lower airway, lung infection and has fever, cough, shortness of breath. Bronchitis is inflammation of the larger air tubes in your airway and often has cough, fever. All 3 are often caused by viruses.
Dr. HARRY OPSIMOS
Dr. HARRY OPSIMOS
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