Childhood Diseases

Posted by: BMJ | 2010/11/13


Virus or bacteria

Dear Doc

My 7 year old son woke up on Friday morning complaining of a sore chest. He was not coughing. I thought he maybe just needed some TLC, so I rubbed some vicks on his chest (he was 100% fine the night before). When I rubbed the vicks in he felt a bit warm. He had a 37.9 temp (ear themometer). He was ok during the morning but by the afternoon he kept touching his chest saying it hurts to breathe. He could breathe but it hurt to do so. I took him to the pharmacy to ask the sister to check if he was weezing. She said his lungs sounded clear. By this time his temp was 38.7.

I gave him some panado which eased the pain and lowered his fever. During the night his nose got blocked and is now very congested. His temp today was 39.4 and panado lowered it to 38. His keeps saying his chest is very sore and is coughing - but just every now and again and it cleary hurts when he coughs.

I believe respiratory infection are usually viral. Can you tell me how long they take to clear up. I would rather take him to a doctor if you think it is best?

Thank you BMJ

Expert's Reply



I am very concerned about your son. He could well have pneumonia. The chest pain he has is due to pleurisy which in children is often due to an underlying pneumonia. He must be seen by a doctor ASAP.

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user comments


Posted by: Madie | 2010/11/14

I would diffinitly take him to the dr, today! Even if it''s viral he can be having a secondary infection! I don''t even think you must wait till Monday to take him to the dr, I would take him to ER, they can detect if it''s viral or bacterial by doing a blood test. My son was hospitalized with lung infection twice, with viral infection! There is a condition where their chest hurts when breathing, but I don''t know the name. Strenghts! My oldest is 7yr old and is on meds now for lung infection and sinisitis....It''s terrible to see them so sick!

Reply to Madie

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