Q. Can an allergy to antibiotics cause breathing difficulty and sore ribs?

Answered by
Dr. Sugreev Singh
and medically reviewed by Dr. Preetha J
This is a premium question & answer published on Nov 17, 2021

Hi doctor,

I recently had a cold (got tested to make sure it was not COVID-19, and it came back negative) and have been experiencing prolonged symptoms. I have sore ribs, continued coughing, expelling mucous, and numbness. For about four days now, I have had difficulty breathing, pain on my left side under my armpit near the nipple, and have experienced numbness in my fingertips twice. I believe that the numbness was from hyperventilation due to over-breathing as a result of the other symptoms. In addition, the pain is worse when I use that muscle group, especially sitting up from the bed. I do not take medication other than a rare Albuterol inhaler for asthma and a few herbal teas.



Welcome to

Thank you for writing and I understand your concern. Actually this all can be due to chest infection, though covid is negative but still there are other infections which can cause such symptoms. So further testing is required. The fingertip are usually numb due to deficiencies of vitamins. Do not worry it will be fine. I would suggest you to do CBC (complete blood count) and chest x-ray and CRP (C-Reactive Protein) test. Then please send me reports, I will check and let you know. Please do testing and send me reports. Are allergic to any antibiotic? Please answer. Thank you.

The Probable causes:


Investigations to be done:

Chest X-ray, CRP, and CBC.

Differential diagnosis:


Probable diagnosis:

Flu-like symptoms.

Treatment plan:

Tablet Azithromycin 500 mg once a day after meal.
Tablet Vitamin B complex once a day before sleeping.
Tablet Paracetamol 500 mg when ever fever.
Tablet Pantoprazole 40 mg once a day before breakfast.
Take these medications for 3 days and let me know afterward.

Preventive measures:

Drink lukewarm water only.

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