Dr. Ben Wedro practices emergency medicine at Gundersen Clinic, a regional trauma center in La Crosse, Wisconsin. His background includes undergraduate and medical studies at the University of Alberta, a Family Practice internship at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario and residency training in Emergency Medicine at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.
Mary D. Nettleman, MD, MS, MACP is the Chair of the Department of Medicine at Michigan State University. She is a graduate of Vanderbilt Medical School, and completed her residency in Internal Medicine and a fellowship in Infectious Diseases at Indiana University.
Most patients with acute upper respiratory infections will have a self
limited illness with symptoms resolving in a few days. Depending upon
circumstances and symptom progression, some patients should seek medical care.
Fever, chills, and shortness of breath are not commonly seen with upper
respiratory infections and may signal a potentially more significant infection
such as influenza, pneumonia, or acute bronchitis.
Patients who are
pregnant or under 2 years of age with shortness
of breath or who have underlying illnesses such as
emphysema should seek medical care.
diarrhea are not usually associated with an acute upper
respiratory infection; however, further evaluation by a health care practitioner
may be necessary if these symptoms occur.
Although infants often catch colds,
babies less than three months of age who
develop fever should be seen immediately by a health care practitioner because their immune system is not yet
fully developed and other infections may be present.
Patients who are immuno-compromised due to medications or illness should
contact their health care practitioner if they develop a fever, even if it seems to be due
to an upper respiratory infection.
Most colds resolve within a week. If symptoms persist, it may be an
indication to seek medical evaluation.