My husband has COPD, with other problems. and is not good with computers, so I will be posting for him.

He is probably just starting with another chest infection, the third in about 2 months. He has 5 days antibiotics and 5 days steroids by him all the time, but is 5 days enough? I don`t think he always gets over the infections in that time. What is the norm?. He is 82 years old.


8 Replies

Dear Mo

Sorry to hear that your husband is going through such a rough time and very worrying for you as well. GPs are often wary of prescribing too many steroids as they do have side effects. I think the best thing you can do is to phone the BLF - click the red balloon at the top of the page and phone for an appointment to speak to one of their nurses; they are specialists in lung problems.

I have bronchiectasis and asthma and my consultant prescribed two weeks of antibiotics and steroids when I get an infection. I expect others will be along to share their experiences.

Best wishes


Hi Mo, I usually have 10 antis and sometimes have 2 packs depending on how bad the infection is. I did hear somewhere that they were only giving 5 days now which seems silly to me.

I do hope he gets sorted out soon and will be feeling much better.

take care

polly xx

I look after my husband who has COPD and it can be very weary when they start with infections. My husband can be the same - and it can take three or four courses of antibiotics before he gets rid of bad infections. He is given doxycycline for seven days with steroids for 5 days. We keep antibiotics and steroids at home so that he can start using the immediately he starts with an infection. It might be an idea to ring the helpline and they maybe able to give you advise about what your husband should be given etc. You can call the helpline on 03000 030 555 Lines are open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm. Good luck and hope your husband recovers quickly. TAD xxx

Hi Salt69 and welcome. All I can say is that Pete has at least 10 days of ab's and he takes steroids daily anyway. I wouldn't say that 5 days worth is enough.

I hope you can get some much needed help for your dear husband and I do wish you both well. xxx

Five days of abs is the bare minimum and would be very unlikely to clear an infection in someone with COPD. I imagine 7 or 10 days would be more what's needed. If he's coughing up a lot of sputum you should ask them a out sending in a sample to be tested. If it does show the prescence of any particular bug, then the antibiotic which best suits can be used. This must all be very overwhelming for both of you right now, but you'll get quite used to it.

I have been prescribed azithromycin 500mg one a day for 3 days then to repeat a week later, this is in case of infection. I have no steroids as stand by, but am on maintenance daily of deflazacort 6 mg steroids anyway.

After having short courses of both steroids and antibiotics I now take antibiotics for two weeks and a reducing course of steroids starting at 8 a day for 5 days reducing to 6 for 5 days 4 for 5days then 2 for five days then 1 for 5 days . The longer courses seem to work for me.

Many thanks to everyone who has replied, I will reply to each one who has kindly given advice, in the next day or so.

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