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Viral & Bacterial Infections

General Information

Bacteria are microorganisms that live and multiply on their own. Viruses are also microorganisms, but they need a living host, such as an animal, plant or human, to survive. Both bacteria and viruses can cause infection.

It’s normal to come down with some viral infections, such as a common cold or the flu, or bacterial infections like strep throat or a urinary tract infection (UTI). Many viral and bacterial infections can be treated at home or with urgent care. However, you may need go to the emergency room if your symptoms are severe or if you are in a high-risk group.

Goshen Hospital Emergency Department can provide the fast, personalized treatment you need for viral and bacterial infections. With highly experienced teams and leading-edge tools, we can diagnose your infection and get you the right treatment. Come to our emergency room or call 911 for expert care that focuses on your healing.

When to seek emergency care for bacterial and viral infection symptoms

Signs of infectious diseases depend on the specific infection. Viral and bacterial infection symptoms can be similar. They often include:

  • Fatigue
  • Muscle aches
  • Fever
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea

Seek medical care at Goshen Hospital Emergency Department for these severe symptoms:

Treating viral vs. bacterial infections at our emergency room

Your treatment depends on whether the infection is bacterial or viral. Bacterial infections are commonly treated with antibiotics. Be sure to finish the entire course of antibiotics, even once you start to feel better, unless your doctor tells you to stop. This helps to overcome the bacteria and prevent resistance. Bacterial infections that are resistant to antibiotics can be more difficult to treat and require additional care.

Viruses don’t respond to antibiotics, but antiviral medicines are often effective. It’s also important that you get plenty of rest and fluids and take over-the-counter medicine to treat symptoms when needed.

Our board certified emergency doctors and nurses are dedicated to your well-being. You can expect high-quality care when you come to our emergency room with a bacterial or viral infection.

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