Asthma UK community forum

Asthma and Antibiotics

I wonder if anyone can help me please..

My husband is currently out in Africa for a few months. He has told me over the last couple of weeks he has been having difficulties breathing as well as a persistent cough. Last week, he went to hospital where he had to do a sputum test. Unfortunately, they don't have any x-ray machines where he is situated.

Apparently, the sputum test revealed that my husband has the onset of asthma. (He has never had any breathing difficulties like this before.) I am concerned because the doctor over there prescribed him 1 month's worth of Ventolin tablets and 1 month's worth of Septerin, which I understand is an antibiotic.

My husband has been coughing a lot, especially at night and has a blocked nose so I'm guessing the antibiotics are to clear up an infection perhaps? However, what worries me the most is taking antibiotics with Ventolin for a whole month. Can you take antibiotics for a month? I'm worried it will cause him harm in the long run. Any advice will be greatly appreciated.

A very concerned wife

2 Replies

Well, if you are concerned you should go back to the doctors. But if its at all reassuring, i get a persistant infection in a cyst on my earlobe, and i usually end up having a week of fluclox 250, then a week of fluclox 500, then a week of fluclox 500 with penecillin V. So thats 3 weeks, and on strong doses for two of those weeks! I think it might make him feel a bit rubbishy as it ruins things like the bacteria in your gut, but i wouldnt imagine it doing him any harm! I know people also do go on antibiotics long term, although that tends to be at lower doses than to treat an infection.

Is your husband going to be coming home soon? Then you could get him a proper cxray and stuff to see whats going on. i didnt know a sputum test could show the onset of asthma?? and ventolin tablets are unusual - although i have heard of them being used very effectivly. does he also have an inhaler?? or is it just the tabs??


Thanks very much for your reply Soph :-)

It is the amount of antibiotics he was given that concerned me so thank you for putting my mind at ease.

Unfortunately, my husband won't be back until Christmas so he can get properly checked out when he's home. I guess I'm sceptical about the doctor's prognosis out there as they don't have many facilities where my husband is situated (not even an x-ray machine) but they told me he had asthma! He was only given tablets, no inhaler. He's been taking the tablets for 3 days now (1 Ventolin tab every night) but it doesn't seem to be working yet.... hopefully soon otherwise I think he'll have to go to a hospital in a bigger city to get checked out.

Thanks once again for your reply


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