Q. My strep result is positive, but my symptoms are like viral. What to do?

Answered by
Dr. Sadaf Mustafa
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Jun 01, 2016 and last reviewed on: Sep 11, 2018

Hi doctor,

During my travel I had a sore throat, 102 degree fever and back aches. I did not have a stuffy nose or congestion. I previously had bladder infection three weeks ago and the doctor whom I visited in that place prescribed me Levofloxacin. I think he was treating me for a kidney infection, but due to language barrier I was not sure.

I took the five day course of antibiotics and felt better. Three days later the sore throat came back, but no fever. As I came back to my town, I visited my regular GP. She did a throat culture and prescribed Amoxicillin. Before starting Amox, the sore throat went away and a cough developed with green mucus. Not sure whether it comes from the lungs or sinuses. I got my strep results today and it is positive.

So, I am trying to figure out what is going on. Instead of strep, my symptoms are like a viral infection. Should I need the second round of antibiotics? As a biologist, I tend to overanalyze my sicknesses, some times, but I am trying to understand this better.

Due to the studies of the irreparable damage to the GI tract of antibiotics, I do not like the idea of being on my second round of antibiotics if this could be viral. And if it was a viral case, is it bad to stop the antibiotics? Please explain.



Welcome to icliniq.com.

Strep pharyngitis is usually graded by modified center criteria. I do not have all the elements to plug in the numbers. Classically, you should have fever, exudates on the tonsils and posterior pharynx, cervical lymph node enlargement and absence of cough.

Your positive culture might be representing that you harbor Strep in your pharynx. Now that the symptoms of sore throat are gone and I would not suggest getting treatment for that reason. Now, the productive cough with green phlegm does not always mean that you have a bacterial infection.

By the book when you have symptoms of sinus pressure, congestion and or fever for a week not improving with conservative treatment that is when we treat with Amoxicillin. If you have any of the mentioned symptoms, then you would benefit from treatment.

If you are having chest congestion, which is not improving with conservative treatment getting a chest x-ray and CBC (complete blood count) would be a reasonable option.

For further information consult an internal medicine physician online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/internal-medicine-physician

Was this answer helpful?


Related Questions:
My friend abused cocaine and became sick. What to do now?

He may be exposed to EBV infection (Epstein-Barr virus) or just acute tonsillitis due to strep throat or other viral infection (Influenza) ...   Read full

Rheumatic Fever and Rheumatic Heart Disease

.. disease that is characterized by fever and joint pain. This is an outcome of improperly treated strep throat and scarlet fever .. ...   Read full

What can be the reason for raised liver enzymes during fever?

I was treated with Keflex IV antibiotic, which cured the infection ... Some viral syndromes can also cause¬†(viral infection without any cause) elevated liver function test, especially if the Str...   Read full


This is a sponsored Ad. icliniq or icliniq doctors do not endorse the content in the Ad.

Also Read Answers From:

Comprehensive Medical Second Opinion.Submit your Case

Also Read

Why Do Some COVID-19 Patients Test Negative?
COVID-19 has resulted in a pandemic and has caused serious health crises worldwide. When we develop the symptoms of COV...  Read more»
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD): Reliving the Trauma
PTSD is a mental health condition where the person who undergoes an extremely stressful condition, develops disturbing t...  Read more»
Remdesivir - Uses, Dosage, Side Effects, Drug Warnings, and Precautions
Remdesivir is a broad-spectrum antiviral medication. It is the only medicine approved for COVID-19 treatment. To know ab...  Read more»

Ask your health query to a doctor online?

Ask an Internal Medicine Physician Now

* guaranteed answer within 4 hours.

Disclaimer: No content published on this website is intended to be a substitute for professional medical diagnosis, advice or treatment by a trained physician. Seek advice from your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with questions you may have regarding your symptoms and medical condition for a complete medical diagnosis. Do not delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice because of something you have read on this website.