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Bronchitis - Viral/Bacterial, No cure? watch

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    Hey all,

    I've been to my Doctor several times recently (2-3 doctors to be exact) and explained for the past month and a half now I've had a very bad cough. I don't cough 24/7, but I get these coughing routines about every 2-3 hours, and I tend to cough up a yellow mucus. Despite this, my Doctor insisted that he thinks it's Laryngitis with a chest cold or something. I suggested that I thought it was Bronchitis, and he said 'WEll they are interlinked', and I emphasised that I didn't want it to turn into Pneumonia and he said 'It only does in a very small number of cases'.. but to be honest I think my Doctor is pretty useless. Anyway because he thinks it's viral, he didn't give me anything and said 'It should go away in time', this was about 3 weeks ago, and to be honest, there has been little to no improvement. I've seen him about 3 times now and he doesn't want to prescribe me anything, though one doctor gave me a mild antibiotic which didn't do much.

    I still cough up the yellow mucus, and whilst I try to keep well hydrated, and 'steam myself' every so often, with a bowl of hot water inhaled, it just isn't shifting! The mucus is still yellow as mentioned, and the other day I was coughing so much I was almost a little sick in the toilet, though a bit of yellow mucus came out with it. Can anyone give any more advice/comments? Thank you, how would he know it is Viral instead of Bacterial? He insisted it was Viral, but it just doesn't seem to be improving! Plus I go to Uni this weekend, so I'm dreading still having this after nearly 2 months!

    Thanks all
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    You're not in Cambridge are you? This sounds like what happened when I was at uni there- the doctors were useless between them. I had an horrednous cough for going on two months and I must have been to the doctor about 3 or 4 times, and called the out of hours one too. I got diagnosed with croup (viral so no drugs) and asthma and various viral infections that they wouldn't give me antibiotics for, just inhalers that did sod all (unsurprisingly, since I don't have asthma). The on call doctor diagnosed my cough as viral over the phone, purely because of my age. Finally one doctor thought it might be a bacterial chest infection, gave me some antibiotics and I was better within 4 days. What a bloody palaver.

    I would keep going back and tell them everything you've said here. Say you understand that antibiotics shouldn't be prescribed willynilly but this has been going on for ages and it's not going away on its own. I don't know if there are any tests that they can do for a cough other than listen to your chest that would confirm it is bacterial, since they really don't seem to want to give you antibiotics unless they are sure it's bacterial, but they need to do something because 2 months with a cough that won't go away is ridiculous.
    • #1
    • Thread Starter
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    (Original post by *Joanna*)
    You're not in Cambridge are you? This sounds like what happened when I was at uni there- the doctors were useless between them. I had an horrednous cough for going on two months and I must have been to the doctor about 3 or 4 times, and called the out of hours one too. I got diagnosed with croup (viral so no drugs) and asthma and various viral infections that they wouldn't give me antibiotics for, just inhalers that did sod all (unsurprisingly, since I don't have asthma). The on call doctor diagnosed my cough as viral over the phone, purely because of my age. Finally one doctor thought it might be a bacterial chest infection, gave me some antibiotics and I was better within 4 days. What a bloody palaver.

    I would keep going back and tell them everything you've said here. Say you understand that antibiotics shouldn't be prescribed willynilly but this has been going on for ages and it's not going away on its own. I don't know if there are any tests that they can do for a cough other than listen to your chest that would confirm it is bacterial, since they really don't seem to want to give you antibiotics unless they are sure it's bacterial, but they need to do something because 2 months with a cough that won't go away is ridiculous.
    Wow, I'm glad someone else has been in a similar position! Nah I live in Durham, tomorrow I might make an appointment with a whole new Doctor, I'm guessing emphasising the length of time helps? They listened to my chest the last two times I went, but they said it was clear. However when my cough gets REALLY chesty, they would definitely 'hear' the infection so to speak, just my luck I tend to go in when the cough is non-existent Thanks for the reply !
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Hey all,

    I've been to my Doctor several times recently (2-3 doctors to be exact) and explained for the past month and a half now I've had a very bad cough. I don't cough 24/7, but I get these coughing routines about every 2-3 hours, and I tend to cough up a yellow mucus. Despite this, my Doctor insisted that he thinks it's Laryngitis with a chest cold or something. I suggested that I thought it was Bronchitis, and he said 'WEll they are interlinked', and I emphasised that I didn't want it to turn into Pneumonia and he said 'It only does in a very small number of cases'.. but to be honest I think my Doctor is pretty useless. Anyway because he thinks it's viral, he didn't give me anything and said 'It should go away in time', this was about 3 weeks ago, and to be honest, there has been little to no improvement. I've seen him about 3 times now and he doesn't want to prescribe me anything, though one doctor gave me a mild antibiotic which didn't do much.

    I still cough up the yellow mucus, and whilst I try to keep well hydrated, and 'steam myself' every so often, with a bowl of hot water inhaled, it just isn't shifting! The mucus is still yellow as mentioned, and the other day I was coughing so much I was almost a little sick in the toilet, though a bit of yellow mucus came out with it. Can anyone give any more advice/comments? Thank you, how would he know it is Viral instead of Bacterial? He insisted it was Viral, but it just doesn't seem to be improving! Plus I go to Uni this weekend, so I'm dreading still having this after nearly 2 months!

    Thanks all
    First of all, Bronchitis is viral, not bacterial. Laryngitis can be viral or bacterial, so if the antibiotics haven't worked then your doctor is probably right in saying it is viral. It is worth asking why your natural immunity is low - your symptoms are mild but your body can't seem to shift it. Vitamin D and echinacea supplements might help.

    Have you tried any cough medicines? Ask at your chemist for a good suppressant. Robitussin is the best if it is available, it contains an ingredient good for clearing viral-related coughs.
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    (Original post by Cybele)
    First of all, Bronchitis is viral, not bacterial. Laryngitis can be viral or bacterial, so if the antibiotics haven't worked then your doctor is probably right in saying it is viral. It is worth asking why your natural immunity is low - your symptoms are mild but your body can't seem to shift it. Vitamin D and echinacea supplements might help.

    Have you tried any cough medicines? Ask at your chemist for a good suppressant. Robitussin is the best if it is available, it contains an ingredient good for clearing viral-related coughs.
    Lolwut? need to get medical facts right

    We don't know your whole history, thus no one here can really comment with any certainty. You can demand antibiotics all you want but in the majority of cases, you will never get them, you are not a doctor....some infections are nasty and will eventually go away, it sucks, but coughing for a number of weeks is minor compared to the other ramifications of antibiotic prescriptions to everyone if they cough for a month or 2
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    (Original post by Carpediemxx)
    Lolwut? need to get medical facts right
    Alright then, 'Bronchitis is almost always viral.'

    :rolleyes: Kin ell.
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Hey all,

    I've been to my Doctor several times recently (2-3 doctors to be exact) and explained for the past month and a half now I've had a very bad cough. I don't cough 24/7, but I get these coughing routines about every 2-3 hours, and I tend to cough up a yellow mucus. Despite this, my Doctor insisted that he thinks it's Laryngitis with a chest cold or something. I suggested that I thought it was Bronchitis, and he said 'WEll they are interlinked', and I emphasised that I didn't want it to turn into Pneumonia and he said 'It only does in a very small number of cases'.. but to be honest I think my Doctor is pretty useless. Anyway because he thinks it's viral, he didn't give me anything and said 'It should go away in time', this was about 3 weeks ago, and to be honest, there has been little to no improvement. I've seen him about 3 times now and he doesn't want to prescribe me anything, though one doctor gave me a mild antibiotic which didn't do much.
    So actually....you have been given an antibiotic. What is a 'mild' antibiotic please?

    Sounds like you think your doctor is 'pretty useless' because you and him have differing opinions and you aren't getting what you want!
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    I would go and ask to see a different doctor.

    I've had a few bouts of bronchitis in the past and it's not a nice thing at all. I've actually coughed persistently to the point where I have made myself sick, so I completely understand how you feel. The last bout I had, my GP sent me for a chest xray which came back clear.
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Hey all,

    I've been to my Doctor several times recently (2-3 doctors to be exact) and explained for the past month and a half now I've had a very bad cough. I don't cough 24/7, but I get these coughing routines about every 2-3 hours, and I tend to cough up a yellow mucus. Despite this, my Doctor insisted that he thinks it's Laryngitis with a chest cold or something. I suggested that I thought it was Bronchitis, and he said 'WEll they are interlinked', and I emphasised that I didn't want it to turn into Pneumonia and he said 'It only does in a very small number of cases'.. but to be honest I think my Doctor is pretty useless. Anyway because he thinks it's viral, he didn't give me anything and said 'It should go away in time', this was about 3 weeks ago, and to be honest, there has been little to no improvement. I've seen him about 3 times now and he doesn't want to prescribe me anything, though one doctor gave me a mild antibiotic which didn't do much.

    I still cough up the yellow mucus, and whilst I try to keep well hydrated, and 'steam myself' every so often, with a bowl of hot water inhaled, it just isn't shifting! The mucus is still yellow as mentioned, and the other day I was coughing so much I was almost a little sick in the toilet, though a bit of yellow mucus came out with it. Can anyone give any more advice/comments? Thank you, how would he know it is Viral instead of Bacterial? He insisted it was Viral, but it just doesn't seem to be improving! Plus I go to Uni this weekend, so I'm dreading still having this after nearly 2 months!

    Thanks all
    By and large if you have a nasty viral infection, or a bacterial infection you usually feel pretty rotten with it.

    If you saw me as a patient and have no clinical signs (bar this peristent productive cough) and were well (which I would bet money you are) then I would likely give you a course of amoxicillin and say to you 95%+ chances are this is either viral or post viral inflammation - your lungs are upset and still producing loads of gunk.

    However, we can try you ona short course of antibiotics. If it gets better great, the abx might have helped. If not then a closer look may be required.
 
 
 
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