Acute Bronchitis

Updated on October 06, 2009
A.P. asks from Austin, TX
24 answers

My son had a cold that turned into Croup Cough, now it has turned into Acute Bronchitis. We have not brought him into the doctor or the hospital. I spoke with his doctor and she diagnosed via phone, said antibiotics would not help. If he runs a high fever and it will not go down or he becomes lathargic....wont eat.... then bring him in..it was after hours and she has seen him since he was a month old, we trust her very much...... the only thing he really seems to be bothered by is the coughing, and has had a steady mid grade fever 99.5-102.5, 102.5 was the highest once last night. He does not get sick often, so I am worried. Should I take him to the ER?

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So What Happened?

Thank you to all!! That was the first question I asked on here, and I must say VERY helpful!

Around 3 yesterday, my sons fever went down to 99.1 and has not risen any higher. This was all without medication. I kept him calm watching movies. And of course pushed TONS of liquids. He never became lathargic and he ate tons the whole time. Again the doctor and the emergancy room folks said there was no need to bring him in. He stilll had a cough but nothing like wha it was, I think it will be one of those lingering coughs, for sure! We will continue to keep an eye on our little angel, to make sure it stays gone!!

Again Thank you all for your help! oh he is a month shy of three.

Featured Answers

C.G.

answers from Austin on

Hi A.

I would take him in , it sounds like as it goes on it gets worse.
Better safe than sorry. Poor little guy.
I hope he gets to feeling better soon.

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J.T.

answers from College Station on

No. You would be exposing him o other germs. Trust the Dr. and if you feel you need to, call her for a real important in the morning.

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C.W.

answers from Houston on

Absolutly get him seen. My son had the same and he eded up spending a while in the hospital. Always better to be safe than sorry... I would advice Texas Children's. Hope he gets better

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M.S.

answers from San Antonio on

I know I am late responding on this BUT...the best place I have found for medical information involving children is www.askdrsears.com The site has tons of information and tells you when to wait it out at home, when to schedule an appointment, when to go to the ER, when to call an ambulance.

Oh and docs can diagnose croup over the phone...it is a very distinctive sound...like a barking seal.

I am very glad to hear your son is better!!

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S.O.

answers from San Antonio on

No!! to the ER! No, no, no based on what you described. One of my pet peeves is people running to the ER when not needed. Somehow folks have lost sight of the purpose of the ER---it is for life threatening emergencies or things that need immediate treatment (broken legs, head injuries, high fevers not controllable with meds...)

One of the main reasons my grandmother died several years ago was all the people with coughs and hurt pinky toes (or whatever) in the ER that night that kept her from being seen in a timely manner. She had a massive, sudden hjeart attack and the cardiologist believed that her being seen 20 minutes before she was may have saved her life.
(sorry, she was the most dear person in my life and the overuse of the ER can compromise the care for all, and we all pay more for medical care as a result.)

I would encourage everyone to use your doctor or your urgent care center for things like this. There are a lot of urgent care centers for kids and babies now! They are easy to find, and are staffed all night or all weekend. I encourage everyone to find that Ped Center closest to them today, find out if they take your insurance and keep the number handy.

I am glad your son is better!!! I know it's very scary when they are so sick.
I was not picking on you with the ER comments----I have just seen ER trips for minor fender bender accidents, scraped knees and stuffed up noses several times on this website.

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S.O.

answers from San Antonio on

No! You will only be exposing him to more illnesses and his life is not being threatened. Keep in touch with the doctor. Most doctors will not tell you to stay home unless they really don't see the need. You can make an appointment anyway; but, don't take him to the ER for just a cough and slight fever. Rather, take him to the doctor if you feel the need. Otherwise, make sure he gets plenty of rest and fluids. Keep him upright as much as possible, even when sleeping. Keep the air humid to help him cough up junk. Coughing is good for him at this point. Fever just means that his body is fighting to fight infection. The rise in body temp kills off the bad bacteria. Stay in touch with your doctor.

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B.W.

answers from San Antonio on

A.,

I too don't like running to the doctor when it is something that can be treated at home. It is important to treat a high fever, though. I have 4 children and my husband has 5. Now we have 3 teenagers at home. It is $85 for an office visit and we usually know how to care for them at home. My mother-in-law gave me a lot of interesting natural methods to treating things. Like, for a cough, put Vicks Vaporub (or generic mentholatum) on the bottom of their feet and put socks on. The cough stops instantly and they sleep like a baby.

As for the flu or a bacterial infection, My husband has a passport and goes to Mexico (across from Eagle Pass)to stock up on antibiotics (like Amoxicillian or Ampicillian) for $15.00 for 160 capsules (2 bottles w/80 capsules)- you buy 2 sets and get the 3rd set free. With the flu going around, we don't hesitate to start them on antibiotics as soon as they start the symptons. The kids who have died, had a a bacterial infection which caused a swelling in the brain. That requires antibiotics. If it is a virus, the doctors don't want to give you antibiotics. However, sometimes a viral infection becomes a bacterial infection and if there is a high fever, it usually means there is an infection somewhere. Pneumonia is very serious and very cureable. My second son had Pneumonia when he was 18 months old. He was lethargic and had a temperature. It happened so suddenly with a cold. We are so thankful we took him to the ER. The doctor told me that 30 years ago (this was in 1983) he would have been telling me that my son was going to die. But, thanks to penicillin, he'd be up and playing around in about 30 minutes and that by the next day you wouldn't know he was sick. He gave him a shot and he was right.

With the H1N1 all around, we don't take any chances. We have had 2 of our children catch a flu and we nipped it in 3 days by using natural methods and antibiotics. I strongly believe in homemade chicken soup. We call it "JEWISH PENICILLIN". If you want a frameable recipe (FREE), just e-mail me at [email protected]____.com and I will e-mail it to you. The secret is the garlic. Garlic is a natural antibiotic. This soup takes a whole chicken, carrots, celery and about 8 cloves of garlic. It really works.

My MIL used a clove of garlic in the ear for an ear infection and it healed it. They had a neighbor who's 3-year-old had been on 3 courses of antibiotics and still had an ear infection, but the garlic worked in just a couple of days.

My Husband has a Masters in Chemistry, so we are not totally relying on a doctor to tell us what to do. Also, we don't believe it's good for your child to take them into a waiting room full of sick people for many reasons - spreading what your child has, or getting what they have.

I don't like antibiotics, but if there is any infection, it is necessary. I have a friend who's 8-day-old baby died because their pediatrician told them not to worry and that he'd be better. She had taken him in and he told her to take him home because it wasn't that serious. It was so tragic. She even called him and told him that he (the baby) had labored breathing and a high fever. He told her to keep him hydrated and give him childrens tylenol for the fever. She asked if she should take him to the emergency room. He told her not to worry and to call him in the morning. Now, she is still reliving the pain because she is thinking that he might still be alive if she hadn't listened to the doctor and had taken him to the emergency room. Doctors aren't God. We need to educate ourselves to question them and do what is best for our children.

Years ago, my son had a reaction to the Pertussis part of the DPT shot. My MIL warned me that her son had a reaction to it and that I should watch him. The evening of the day he had the shot, he went into convulsions because his temperature went up to 105.7. He was sitting in his high chair waiting for dinner to be served and suddenly he started shaking, flailing his arms around and staring into outerspace. We immediately took him to the emergency room and they got his temperature down with suppositories, But, it took a while. Now, I know how to deal with a high fever. It would have helped to put vinegar on the bottoms of his feet, forehead, back of the neck, and wrists. It drops a fever instantly. I still would take them to the ER, but I would begin treatment ASAP because that high of a fever can cause brain damage. That is why he went into convulsions. He was out of it so his brain was protected.

About 10 years ago, my stepson had an accident where he was in the hospital and contracted a Systemic infection and his temperature spiked at 105. He was at Wilford Hall ICU and nothing they were trying was lowering his temperature. My Husband asked them if they had any vinegar. They didn't. Then he asked if they had a cafeteria. They did and he went and got some pickle juice and brought it back to the ICU. He applied pickle juice to his forehead, bottoms of his feet, back of the neck and wrists and his fever immediately went down. They gave him a huge dose of antibiotics and eventually he was fine. But, if he hadn't used the pickle juice (vinegar) it would have taken a lot longer to get his fever down. Also, it's more humane than covering him with ice. I am amazed that the medical staff in the ICU had never heard of this technique. You see, it didn't involve a drug,and therefore, wasn't profitable, so they don't teach it in medical school.

I'm glad your son is better. Keep an eye on him. The flu can rebound. Always listen to your "Mom" instinct. Don't let a doctor tell you that nothing is wrong when you feel it in your gut that something is wrong.

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A.Y.

answers from Chicago on

There is a lot going around - we had a similar cough in our family recently (as did several friends) and it lasted 8 weeks or so. Only one of my daughters got a fever - everyone else just the cough. The cough was terrible but it really was the only symptom. (lot's of mucus) We gave our kids mucinex to help keep the cough productive but it still lasted a long time.

But YOU need to feel comfortable with your decision so if you keep feeling like you should go in just for peace of mind then by all means go. Maybe call ahead though to see how busy it is before you go. The last thing you want is to get into a room full of really sick people and have to wait your turn!

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B.K.

answers from Austin on

Since it sounds like it is getting worse, I would take him in. A fever shouldn't start midway through an infection. That's a sign of secondary infection. Good luck. Having sick kids is SO hard!

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V.S.

answers from Austin on

First off it depends on if the bronchitis is viral or bacterial. I don't think she would have any way of diagnosing this over the phone. They would have to draw blood and see if the lymphacites are elevated to make that determination. I had a similar situation with my daughter when she was about 6 months old! The viral version of this is called bronchiolitis not bronchitis! She did in fact have the viral form, but just so they are able to give you somethings to help with symptoms and ease your child a little. The number one thing I can say if you dont take him to the ER is to call your DR and ask her if she will call you in two things. Number one a chambered inhaler. My daughter had what I called "donkey breathing" at night and could barely sleep between this and the coughing. The inhaler helped IMMEDIATELY!! They can perscribe something like z-dex that will help with coughing and such, but if there is too much phlem in his lungs this can RAPIDLY turn to pneumonia and he could very well end up in the hospital. I hope this helps and I hope your little one feels better soon. I know it is so hard to watch this happening with your own child and feel so helpless.

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R.H.

answers from College Station on

if it is acute bronchitis the doctor is right there is nothing they can do. You might want to set up an appointment and have him checked for the flu. They do have medicine that will help with the flu but there is no fast fix for either. Your doctor is right drinks lots of water, rest and eat chicken soup. I have also found one of those hummidifers (sp?) work great. If the child will drink warm tea also helps me alot.

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V.B.

answers from Houston on

When my 2yr old was only 2months old he had problems with an acute bronchial congestion. The doc prescribed a nebulizer. We used it for 2-3 weeks. I finally was very frustrated with his bad, bad cough not budging the cold in his little tiny chest. I sought help from a natural cures store when we were living in Las Vegas. They told me to give him some vitaminy tasting liquid called kid-viral, in two days... clearing up and eventually by the end of the week, it was GONE (THE COUGH). I recommend American Health foods here in Houston, Tx. We have also gone to a Asian Herbalist who has his masters as a doc also off of Bellaire in Houston. There are no side effects with God's medicine!

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P.A.

answers from Houston on

To help with his cough, buy Rescon G. It is the best stuff in the world and I still use it for my 15 year old daughter who has asthma. It is expensive ($14) but it is well worth it.

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D.S.

answers from Houston on

Make an appt and take him to the doctor, first appt available today or fit him in. Fever says there is an infection. Let the doc look at him and go from there.

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C.W.

answers from Waco on

Hi A.
If your regular Dr. will not see him, take him immediately to the er- with all that is going around do not take a chance with "self diagnosis" or over the phone diagnosis",,,, with any elevated rise in temp and the cough he needs immediate attention.
\good luck and blessings

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C.S.

answers from Houston on

A.,

He needs to see a pediatrician. If your doctor won't give you antibiotics for bronchitis, you need a new doctor. You can e-mail me at [email protected]____.com if you need a referral for a good pediatrician in the Cypress or Houston area.

Peace,
C.

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G.K.

answers from Austin on

You did not mention how old your son is but the fact that your doctor called it bronchitis indicates that he is over six months old (under 6 months it's called bronchialitis). Your doctor is probably trying to avoid exposing your son to any additional illnesses that might be encountered in a waiting room but, if the fever over 101 persists, you need to let her know. Something that might alleviate congestion is sitting in the bathroom with the door shut, the curtain pulled & the shower running with only hot water. Breathing the steam will sometimes help open the air passages. (Our bathroom became a second "play room" for several years with my youngest.) If he's old enough & will tolerate it, a warm rag placed over the top half of the face will help open sinus passages also & thus promote drainage. Something else we did was buy one of those large pillows with arms (resemble the top part of an armchair) for my son to sleep on at night. It helped keep the drainage from accumulating as much as when he layed flat in bed & thus alleviated the coughing a little. Not a cure, just a tool. For younger ones, using several pillows to prop him up might help as long as you're sure he won't roll out of bed. We also let him sleep in a recliner with pillows propped on both sides to keep him more upright. (semi-sit position)
I wish you the best of luck.

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J.L.

answers from Austin on

Yes, if it were my child, I would. Your doctor has not heard his cough or listened to his chest. Someone needs to check your child for pneumonia. It's always better to be safe than sorry.

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A.A.

answers from Waco on

Ditto to most of the responses you have gotten so far. A fever should definitely not start midway through some kind of illness. If it does, that is a sure sign of a secondary infection like pneumonia and you don't mess around with that. I also agree that NO reputable doctor would diagnose bronchitis over the phone. A doctor needs to listen to his chest. If his fever gets super high or he becomes lethargic, won't eat, rash, etc. yes take him to the ER at once. If not, it can probably wait until the next day, but IMHO he needs to be seen.

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J.T.

answers from Victoria on

not sure how old your son is but that seems to be an odd responce from a doctor. they usually want to check on him to see. i would find a different doctor, but i would have takne my son in for the cold....i am one of those mommas!

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T.V.

answers from McAllen on

YES, anything that interferes with breathing HAS to be taken care of ASAP!!!! specially with the A H1N1 flu going around, even if it turns out to be something else entirely DO take the baby to ER o talk again w/you ped.
T. in Cancun (I am a paramedic by the way)

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S.D.

answers from Austin on

I wouldn't go to the ER, but I definitely would take him in to the doctor. I personally would not be comfortable with an over the phone diagnosis. Follow your instincts.

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D.F.

answers from Austin on

How old is your son? There is no way that any physician worth a grain of salt that would diagnose Acute Bronchitis over the phone. She needs to listen to his chest at the very least. 102.5 is serious. With the flu out there, most docs are telling their patients to come in with anything over 101. (I'm on the way in with my son today) I would definitely get another opinion. The last time I took advice from a doc who told me not to worry about it over the phone, my son almost died. I waited a whole weekend before I finally listened to my mother's intuition because the doc made me feel ignorant for worrying. It could have been tragic. You know what's o.k and what's not for your son.

If you're bringing this to Mamasource, your intuition is telling you that your doctor is wrong. Either push your doctor to actually see your son, or find someone who will. Either the ER or even just one of your friend's pediatrician (that's who caught my son's illness).

You know your son better than anyone. Don't be afraid to do what you think is right until that nagging feeling is satisfied. Best of luck. We're on your side.

R.W.

answers from San Antonio on

I would take him to the ER. We have taken our son into the ER many times, because of the same thing.

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