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15.04.2014, admin
Infection in the lower respiratory tract is far more serious than upper respiratory tract infection. It is important to base the antibiotic of choice on the sensitivity test and isolated bacteria because of increasing bacteria resistant to antibiotics and traditional treatments are now becoming less effective. In children, procaine penicillin and amoxicillin are found to have greater effect compared to cotrimoxazole for community-acquired pneumonia.
Increased fluid intake is usually advised by doctors to patients having lower respiratory tract infection. This leaflet gives some tips on what to do, and what symptoms to look out for which may indicate a more serious illness. Lower respiratory tract infection is always referred to pneumonia but it can also refer to other illnesses like acute bronchitis and lung abscess. Acute bronchitis is an acute viral or bacterial infection of the large airways in people who are healthy without recurrent disease history.

It is classified as community-acquired or hospital-acquired depending on where the patient has acquired the infection.
The first line treatment for this infection is antibiotics but these are not prescribed for viral infections.
It is important to have the right kind of medication based on the bacteria involved to ensure treatment success and to avoid bacterial resistance. Some use antibiotics as treatment for viral bronchitis but its effects are not that beneficial compared to the side effects it may exhibit such as increased resistance, nausea and vomiting, and cost of treatment. In children with severe pneumonia, oral antibiotics are as effective with injectible once without the need to experience injection pain, high cost and risk for infection. Amoxicillin is the first line drug for community acquired pneumonia while intravenous azithromycin is the first line drug if there is a risk of death.
Ticarcillin and gentamicin with clavunalic acid is given intravenously in severe cases of hospital acquired pneumonia.

Treatment and management include causative-agent identification, pain relievers for chest pain, oxygen, physiotherapy, bronchodilators, and hydration.
See separate leaflets about other infections of the respiratory tract and related structures, called 'Bronchiolitis', 'Pneumonia', 'Tonsillitis', 'Sore Throat', 'Sinusitis - Acute', and 'Pleurisy'. Many viruses are passed on by touch, especially from hands that are contaminated with a virus.

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