When you have a common symptom like a stuffy nose or congestion, you don't always know what condition you have. Are those symptoms part of a cold, flu, allergic rhinitis or sinusitis? It is not always easy to know. Refer to the chart below to match your symptoms with the following conditions.
|Symptom||Cold||Flu||Allergic Rhinitis ||Sinusitis|
|Nasal discharge||May be thick and yellow||Cloudy||Thin and clear||Thick, yellow-green|
|Duration||5-7 days||2-3 weeks||Episodic||Perpetual if not treated|
|Generalized aches and pains||Yes, often severe||Mild|
|Extreme exhaustion||Early and prominent|
|Fever||High (102-104), lasts 3-4 days||Low grade|
|Seasonal pattern||Yes||Yes (Winter) ||Yes||Yes|
Paula J. Busse, MD, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Division of Clinical Immunology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY, Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
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