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Child has cold, cough, runny nose and loss of appetite. Safe to give antibiotic?

Answered by
Dr. Uma Rajah Ananth

Pediatrician, Neonatology

Practicing since :1970

Answered : 891 Questions

Posted on Fri, 1 Mar 2013 in Child Health
Question: Hello Doctor

My daughter is 2 years and 8 months old. She is having running nose and cough. Cough increases when she sleeps and therefore has difficulty in sleeping.

There is no fever or any other complaint and she remains active through out the day.

Her appetite is decreased nowadays but she generally also gets into these low appetite periods. She has also been taking flu vaccine course since her first year.

We have been giving her wikoryl syrup 5 ml BD but her cough is not reducing. Should we give her anti-biotics?

Answered by Dr. Uma Rajah Ananth 8 hours later
Welcome to HCM!

You forgot to mention since how many days ,this is happening?!

Cough without fever is not suggestive of infection which warrants antibiotics.
As you know vital infections do not respond to antibiotics!

In the absence of fever:
The indication for antibiotics will be yellowish phlegm from nose or coughing out such phlegm.
Also very prolonged wet cough of more than 1 week, antibiotics can be considered.( in the absence of wheezing)

She may still have
1 ---Mild viral infection.
2. --Allergy

Cause of increased cough in the nights is because of what we call post nasal drip ( secretions trickling down in the back of throat when child is supine and lying down).

Wikoryl contains antihistamine,nasal decongestant and paracetamol.

Just watch for some more time with same medicine and if no improvement after 2-3 days ,take her to pediatrician again to check for wheezing and signs of infection.

God bless
Dr Uma.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
Follow up: Dr. Uma Rajah Ananth 1 hour later
thanks for detailed reply doctor.

This cough has been there for about 4-5 days now. Few days before that she woke up with 99 fever but that went away with one dose of calpol. Since then there has been no fever.

She has wet cough (as i can hear the sound of phlegm) but haven't seen her spitting any phlegm (yellow or otherwise).

Answered by Dr. Uma Rajah Ananth 9 minutes later

Wait for 2-3 days more. If still no improvement take her to the doctor again.
Give some steam inhalations carefully!

Kids have difficulty in bringing out phlegm.

All the best

Dr Uma
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar

The User accepted the expert's answer

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