Children usually suffer more frequent upper respiratory tract infections than adults, but excessive number or more severe or persisting infections can be an indication of an underlying problem. This could be related to allergies, a structural defect in the upper or lower respiratory tract, inadequate treatment of a chronic infection, a defect in the child's ability to mount an appropriate immune response to infection, or rarely a tumor or malignancy.
Once a detailed patient, family, and environmental exposure history is taken, the doctor will discuss with you a plan to further evaluated, if appropriate, for one or more of the causes for the recurring infections. Allergy skin testing and/or other blood tests or x-ray studies may be obtained. Occasionally, depending of the identified or suspect cause referral to a different type of medical specialist or specialized immune deficiency center would be advised.
Regular return visits will be discussed and scheduled with the realization that a flair-up of symptoms may require an acute visit. The treatment plan will be instructed and further discussed in detail by the nursing staff and if appropriate they will also instruct in the proper techniques for using medications.