HomeAnswersInfectious DiseasesinfectionI have a fever and diarrhea. Could it be a bacterial infection?

Can stool and blood tests help identify the type of infection?


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Published At April 3, 2024
Reviewed AtApril 3, 2024

Patient's Query

Hello doctor,

I am a 38-year-old man, and I have been feeling unwell recently. I have come across information about antibiotics and bacteria, and I am concerned that there might be something serious going on. I have been reading about antimicrobial resistance and E. coli (escherichia coli), and it is causing me anxiety. I am experiencing persistent symptoms such as fever, abdominal pain, and diarrhea. I do not know what is happening, but I am worried it might be a bacterial infection. Do you think antibiotics might be necessary? And what if it is E. coli or something resistant to antibiotics? Can you please help me understand what might be happening and suggest what we can do?

Thank you.


Welcome to icliniq.com.

I have read your query, and I can understand your concern.

Antibiotics are medications used to treat bacterial infections. However, it is crucial to note that not all illnesses are caused by bacteria, and antibiotics should be reserved for necessary cases. Based on your symptoms, you may have a bacterial infection, such as a gastrointestinal infection caused by bacteria like E. coli (escherichia coli). Nevertheless, other conditions, such as viral infections or foodborne illnesses, can produce similar symptoms.

Your healthcare provider can help determine the cause of your symptoms and whether antibiotics are required. They may suggest tests, such as stool or blood tests, to identify the cause of your illness. If antibiotics are prescribed, it is crucial to take them as directed by your healthcare provider and complete the course of treatment, even if you begin to feel better before finishing the medication. This ensures the infection is fully treated and helps prevent the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

Antimicrobial resistance is a growing concern, as bacteria can become resistant to antibiotics over time. Consequently, some bacterial infections may become more challenging to treat with antibiotics. Therefore, it is vital to use antibiotics wisely and only when necessary.

To prevent the spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, it is essential to:

  1. Practice good hygiene: Wash your hands frequently with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. This helps prevent the spread of bacteria and viruses.
  2. Use antibiotics wisely: Only take antibiotics when necessary, as prescribed by your healthcare provider, and complete the course of treatment.
  3. Avoid sharing medications: Do not share antibiotics or other medications with others, as this can contribute to the spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
  4. Cook food thoroughly: Ensure that meat and poultry are cooked thoroughly to eliminate any bacteria that may be present. This helps prevent foodborne illnesses caused by bacteria such as E. coli.
  5. Stay up-to-date on vaccinations: Vaccinations can help prevent some bacterial infections and reduce the need for antibiotics. Consult your healthcare provider to determine which vaccinations are suitable for you based on your circumstances.

I hope this will help you.

Thank you.

Same symptoms don't mean you have the same problem. Consult a doctor now!

Dr. Vandana Andrews
Dr. Vandana Andrews

General Practitioner

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