Discussions By Condition: Repiratory conditions

Bronchitis Questions

Posted In: Repiratory conditions 0 Replies
  • Posted By: phnord
  • March 26, 2011
  • 07:01 PM

I'm trying to figure out some fishy things about the diagnosis I was given by my doctor today.

About three days ago, I had a sudden onset of a high fever. The only symptom aside from the fever & muscle aches was a cough, and it wasn't a bad one - but the fever was high, peaking at 101.3ºF or so.

This lasted for a few days, with symptoms slowly growing - sore throat, stuffy nose, sinus pain, headache, diarrea, etc. I went to see my doctor today.

After taking chest X-rays, and after hearing a girl who I had intimate with two weeks prior had just recently gotten over bronchitis prior to our meeting - I was diagnosed with bronchitis. I was given a prescription for a z-Pack (Azithromycin - an antibiotic). I left feeling happy, satisfied with my diagnosis and excited to get better.


I just got home and did some research. Apparently, 90% of cases of bronchitis are viral, with only 10% being bacterial.

Why, then, was I given an antibiotic to treat it? The only tests that were preformed (aside from blood-work, from which the results weren't ready upon leaving) were the X-rays, stethoscopes, etc. At no point was my sputum examined for a bacterial count or anything of the like.

Furthermore, I just consulted my friend. It turns out that she had been diagnosed with a three-month long Asthmatic Bronchitis, which hadn't responded to Azithromycin, but did respond to Amoxicillin.

This puzzles me as the research I've done on Asthmatic Bronchitis suggests that it is not contagious, nor treatable via antibiotics.

So... wtf? Why would Amoxicillin have helped her? Why would I be prescribed an antibioitic when in all likelihood this was viral? Why...

I have a lot of questions.

More importantly - am I safe to go out? Am I contagious? I understand that bacterial and viral bronchitis are both contagious, with viral bronchitis being far more-so than it's counterpart.

If it is bacterial, then will being on antibiotics mean I am no longer contagious?

I'm just... really, really confused.


I'd ask my doctor all of these questions, but he's already gone for the day and I didn't know to ask them while I was still there. He won't be in tomorrow, and I have plans I'd like to pursue tomorrow if I'm not at risk of making people sick...


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