Respiratory tract infection tests

Find reliable independent health and treatment information about respiratory tract infection tests written by Australian experts. This includes resources for consumers and health professionals.

About respiratory tract infection tests

We currently have no information specifically on respiratory tract infection tests but we will be developing new resources as the need arises.

In the meantime see the list of resource below, use the search box to find more, or review our information for health professionals – so you can discuss this with your health carer.

For health professionals  

There is a limited role for medical imaging in the diagnosis of respiratory tract infections. Most such infections - in otherwise healthy patients - are benign and self limiting; although an acute cough can persist for 3-4 weeks.1 There is a limited role for medical imaging in the diagnosis of respiratory tract infection. In patients presenting with severe illness, chest X-ray is indicated to establish a diagnosis of pneumonia.2 Prescribers should consider if the potential benefit outweighs the risk, and whether the results of diagnostic radiology will alter patient management.3

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Clinical information

Quality use of medical tests means choosing the right test for the patient and using it at the right time. We have compiled some of the latest evidence and guidelines on imaging tests for respiratory tract infections to help you discuss the relevance of these with your patients.

References
  1. National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence. Respiratory tract infections – antibiotic prescribing. Prescribing of antibiotics for self-limiting respiratory tract infections in adults and children in primary care. London: National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence, 2008. [Online](accessed 22 April 2009)
  2. Therapeutic Guidelines: Antibiotic. 14th edn. Melbourne: Therapeutic Guidelines Ltd, 2010. [Online]
  3. Government of Western Australia Department of Health. Diagnostic imaging pathways – Requesting imaging investigations: General principles. 2011. [Online] (accessed 27 September 2012).

Related information - respiratory tract infection tests

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(Medical test)
27 Nov 2012 There is a limited role for medical imaging in respiratory tract infections, consider if the potential benefit outweighs the risk