Diagnosis – Listening
In diagnosing an upper respiratory infection, listening to the patient’s story is very important -– have they had this before? Have they traveled recently? What exactly are the symptoms? Does anyone around them have the same symptoms? How long has this been happening? The doctor may also review your medication history.
Diagnosis – Inspection and Exam
Along with the patients’ story, doctors will typically ask patients to go through a series of activities based on visual and verbal cues. These may include taking a high resolution image of the patient’s throat so the physician can see any redness or puffiness, tilting their head to see if it feels heavy and filled with fluid, identifying areas of pain or pressure, and coughing so the physician can listen for signs of bronchitis.
Treatment Guidelines – Flu
A new CDC guideline for flu suggests taking flu antiviral medications such as Tamiflu within 48 hours in order for these medications to be effective. By the time you start realizing you’re sick, a day has already passed. Once the physician has gathered the facts and performed a comprehensive clinical assessment, he or she will determine if the patient requires treatment such as medication or at home remedies to quickly treat and help relieve their symptoms.