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Dr. D. Love
Dr. D. Love, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 19308
Experience:  Family Physician for 10 years; Hospital Medical Director for 10 years.
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There, I've had a cough past 9 days. It started

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Hi there, I've had a cough for the past 9 days. It started as a dry, tickly cough and moved into my chest over the past 3 days. At night it's constant with a lot of phlegm and I also have a blocked nose with headaches and a upset stomach. I've taken 3 bottles of Benylin, but it doesn't seem to make any difference. What should I do/take? Many Thanks
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Also if you were wondering I don't smoke and when coughing my chest burns. Thanks Stefan
Hello from JustAnswer.
There are several options that can be used for these symptoms.
You were correct to try the Benylin, as an antihistamine is the usual first choice for relief of cough and congestion. It also would be reasonable to try other antihistamines, particularly antihistamines that are in a different chemical class. There are several antihistamines on the market, and this is largely because different antihistamines work better for different people. So, it would be reasonable to try loratidine or cetirizine.
It also would be reasonable to use a medicine that is designed to thin the mucus and ease the cough, such as guaifenesin, or a decongestant, such as phenylephrine.
It is fine to continue taking the paracetamol with each of these medicines.
If the symptoms persist despite these other medicines, then the usual next consideration would require a doctor visit, as it would be appropriate to consider whether antibiotics are necessary, and if there is no evidence of infection, the next step would be steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines, such as a nasal spray and/or inhaler of cortisone-like medicines.
If I can provide any further information, please let me know.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks Doctor,I have a course of Betamox 500mg at home which I got from my pharmacist a while back. I wouldn't normally consider taking it, but as it's been 9 days and getting worse would taking that help?
Betamox is an antibiotic that can help with some of the bacterial infections that can cause these symptoms. The most common infections are viral, and no antibiotic will help, which is why the usual first approach is relief of symptoms. When it is a bacterial infection, it can sometimes be a typical bacteria, but it also can be an atypical bacteria. The Betamox is good for the typical bacteria, but is not good for the atypical bacteria, and an antibiotic like azithromycin is more commonly used when there is concern about atypical bacteria.
So, the Betamox would not help a viral or an atypical bacterial infection, but it would be good for the minority of cases that are due to a typical bacterial infection.
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Customer: replied 2 years ago.
OK I see. Thanks Doctor. Very helpful