ZocdocAnswersWhat should I do if the antibiotics I took did not clear up my sinus infection?

Question

What should I do if the antibiotics I took did not clear up my sinus infection?

Went to the doctor cause my nose was real stuffy. He gave me antibiotics because it was a sinus infection. Took all the antibiotics and I am still stuffed up. What now?

Answer

First, I am sorry that you are still feeling bad. There are two possibilities as to why the antibiotics did not work. The most likely possibility is that you did not have a bacterial sinus infection. The vast majority of stuffy noses are caused by viral infections and most of the time they do not always progress to full blown bacterial sinus infections. In these cases, antibiotics should not be prescribed because they will not help a viral infection. However, the truth of the matter is that most of the time physicians prescribe these antibiotics anyway. Thus to me, it is not surprising that you did not get better with the antibiotic because you most likely did not have an infection that the antibiotic could treat. The other possibility which is much less likely is that you do have a bacterial sinus infection, but the bug that is causing it is resistant to the antibiotic. This does happen in people that have chronic illnesses and are on antibiotics a lot. This allows for resistant organisms to form. Since you did not get better with the treatment your doctor prescribed, I suggest that you schedule another appointment (with your primary care physician). Discuss your symptoms in detail and perhaps you can be prescribed some decongestants which can help relieve your symptoms while your infection resolves on its own. Good luck.

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