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Suggest treatment for fever, sore throat and clogged ears

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Posted on Wed, 8 Jul 2015
Question: My 77 mother has been ill since wednesday with a low grade fever of 99.6 , body aches, sore throat, clogged ears. The last two days, she has developed a persistent dry cough that isn't relieved with Benzonatate 100 mg 3x per day, hot teas, lozenges, honey etc...

On Thursday, her doctor prescibed the above along with Amoxicillin 500 mg 3x per day. She began dosing Friday morning but is not responding except for her sore throat which she says no longer hurts. My concern is pneumonia though I believe she had her vaccination. She has early/mid stage dementia so she can't remember when. My question is should we give the amoxicillin a third day to take affect or would you suggest going to an emergency clinic?

Thank you for your time.
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Answered by Dr. Panagiotis Zografakis (47 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
2 days is not always adequate time to see improvement

Detailed Answer:
Hello,

if you're asking whether you should have seen an improvement or not then the answer is that we don't expect major improvement before 2-3 days of antibiotic treatment. A lot depends on the pathogen and the site of involvement. For example, if she's contracted a virus then amoxicillin or any other antibiotic won't help her. If she has pneumonia then the dosage is too low!

So the real question is, has she shown any signs of worsening? Such signs could be an increase in her respiratory rate (like if she has ran to catch the bus), shortness of breath, a high pulse rate, confusion, decreased blood pressure and reduced urination. Other signs could be assessed by your doctor with clinical examination.

If she seems stable and none of the above signs are evident to you then perhaps you can wait for a couple of days more, unless your doctor instructed you differently. If you're too concerned about her or you don't believe you can credibly assess her condition then you should ask your doctor to have another look at her.

The symptoms you have mentioned could be attributed to both serious and mild respiratory tract diseases, so I can't use this information to fully evaluate her condition.

I hope you find my comments helpful!
You can contact me again, if you'd like any clarification or further information.

Kind Regards!
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Answered by
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Dr. Panagiotis Zografakis

Internal Medicine Specialist

Practicing since :1999

Answered : 3801 Questions

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Suggest treatment for fever, sore throat and clogged ears

Brief Answer: 2 days is not always adequate time to see improvement Detailed Answer: Hello, if you're asking whether you should have seen an improvement or not then the answer is that we don't expect major improvement before 2-3 days of antibiotic treatment. A lot depends on the pathogen and the site of involvement. For example, if she's contracted a virus then amoxicillin or any other antibiotic won't help her. If she has pneumonia then the dosage is too low! So the real question is, has she shown any signs of worsening? Such signs could be an increase in her respiratory rate (like if she has ran to catch the bus), shortness of breath, a high pulse rate, confusion, decreased blood pressure and reduced urination. Other signs could be assessed by your doctor with clinical examination. If she seems stable and none of the above signs are evident to you then perhaps you can wait for a couple of days more, unless your doctor instructed you differently. If you're too concerned about her or you don't believe you can credibly assess her condition then you should ask your doctor to have another look at her. The symptoms you have mentioned could be attributed to both serious and mild respiratory tract diseases, so I can't use this information to fully evaluate her condition. I hope you find my comments helpful! You can contact me again, if you'd like any clarification or further information. Kind Regards!