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"I have coughing, sneezing, nasal congestion, and a very sore throat. What should I do?"

ZocdocAnswersI have coughing, sneezing, nasal congestion, and a very sore throat. What should I do?


I am 25 F and also having chest pain when I breathe in and out that goes to my back. Please help


I am sorry to hear that you have been dealing with coughing, sneezing, nasal congestion, and a sore throat, and that you are worried about what might be going on and what to do about it. I am happy to give you some information about my initial thoughts about what might be going on, but ultimately I am going to recommend that you make an appointment to be evaluated by an ENT (Ear Nose Throat) physician to be evaluated. They will be able to take more of a medical history and examine you, which is ultimately what you will need to get the accurate diagnosis that you deserve. My first inclination is that you may be dealing with an upper respiratory tract infection (URI) which is generally caused by a viral infection. The reason that I think this is that the constellation of symptoms that you describe is commonly seen in 'colds' or URIs. What happens is a viral infection causes inflammation of the mucosa (which is the lining within the nose and throat). This results in nasal congestion, nasal irritation leading to sneezing, increased mucous production (causing nasal drainage like post nasal drip, or a runny nose), and a sore throat. You describe many of these symptoms. Most often viral infections resolve in 7-10 days from the onset of the symptoms. In any case, I would recommend making an appointment with your primary care physician, or an ENT to get evaluated.

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