Not sure what to do now: I’ve just got... - British Lung Foun...

British Lung Foundation

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Not sure what to do now


I’ve just got my sputum results back - mixed flora - satisfactory. I was convinced I had an infection so started 14 day AB and steroid emergency meds Monday. Thing is this is the third time since November that I’ve done this and worry that I’m jumping in too soon to take them . How do you know what is infection and what is exacerbation (not that I’m sure what the difference is). Do I carry on with meds or should I stop them now or finish the course to make sure. I am feeling a lot better today but that’s the Prednisolone probably.

10 Replies

rsmrsnl in reply to 2greys

Thank you so much for the very helpful link, it’s reassured me no end. Was concerned about taking so many when there’s no infection. Cheers xx

Get advice from your GP or nurse. It isn't wise to stop antibiotics without completing the course to avoid resistance. The same doesn't apply to prednisolone.

1 sputum result doesnt mean you have not got an infection, before my tx i was having many infections and some took 2 or 3 sputum tests to reveal which nasty bug i had. My doctor is very through and would give me several pots with the paperwork filled out so i could do samples at will and not need an appointment.

All the best...


I felt like you and delayed taking my antibiotics. As a result am now on second box of antibiotics and feeling lousy. A bit worried as oxygen levels have gone down and I'm nearly finished second box.

Hope you feel better soon.

rsmrsnl in reply to anng18

Thank you xx

I’ve had the ‘mixed flora - satisfactory’ results on a sputum test and I know I had an infection as my temperature went through the roof and I felt awful. The only other way a doctor can check is via blood tests to test inflammatory markers. As it’s almost impossible to get an appointment at our surgery I start my rescue pack when I think it’s necessary. I’d rather that than end up in hospital. I’d finish the course if I was you. Hope you feel better soon.

rsmrsnl in reply to Mooka

Thank you. Feeling quite bit better, will be finishing tablets as like yourself you don’t want to end up in hospital again. Xx

Take care and keep warm.

Hi, been the same year before last on pred and ABs almost every month. Then in January last year I knew I had a chest infection so now when I start to feel ill I have just taken the pred and luckily just the 5 days seems to clear everything up. I then seem to go 4 - 5 weeks before it starts again. Started on Montelukast last October and they do seem to be helping.

Hope this helps

C x

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