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When should I call a doctor about acute bronchitis?

ANSWER

Call your doctor if your cough:

You’ll also want to call your doctor if you have a cough and:

  • Turns up mucus that’s yellow or green
  • Keeps you awake at night
  • Lasts more than 3 weeks
  • Produces blood
  • A foul-tasting fluid in our mouth -- this could be reflux
  • Fever over 100.4 F
  • Wheezing or shortness of breath

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: “Bronchitis.”

FamilyDoctor.org: “Acute Bronchitis,” “Chronic Bronchitis.”

PubMed: “Bronchitis.”

CDC: “Get Smart: Know When Antibiotics Work.”

Harvard Health Publications, Harvard Medical School: “Acute Bronchitis.”

American Lung Association: “Diagnosing and Treating Acute Bronchitis.”

National Health Service (U.K.): “Bronchitis.”

National Institutes of Health, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute: “Living with Chronic Bronchitis.”

Reviewed by Sabrina Felson on December 15, 2018

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: “Bronchitis.”

FamilyDoctor.org: “Acute Bronchitis,” “Chronic Bronchitis.”

PubMed: “Bronchitis.”

CDC: “Get Smart: Know When Antibiotics Work.”

Harvard Health Publications, Harvard Medical School: “Acute Bronchitis.”

American Lung Association: “Diagnosing and Treating Acute Bronchitis.”

National Health Service (U.K.): “Bronchitis.”

National Institutes of Health, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute: “Living with Chronic Bronchitis.”

Reviewed by Sabrina Felson on December 15, 2018

NEXT QUESTION:

When should you call a doctor about chronic bronchitis?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

    This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information.