In June I was with my 4 year old son at the zoo. He came running over to me with his hair and face wet complaining that a guy spit on him. I looked like mad for this person, but to no avail. Anyway, the next morning my son was sick and threw up once. By the evening he seemed better, but within a few days was developing a cough. This cough would last about 6 weeks producing tons of thick mucus, especially at night. It slowly went away, albeit never completely. This past week he is begining to cough more. We took him to the Dr. for an allergy test. He has no environmental allergies. She listened to his lungs and heard a slight wheeze on his exhalation. SHe prescribed him with QVAR and Flonase and wants to see him back in 6 weeks. So my question, could he have caught TB from this guy that spit on him? Or am I over reacting?
No, if directly related to this incident, this would not be TB. The onset was much too fast for that disease. As for throwing up, that too would not be an immediate sign of infectious disease. Wet hair and face would also be unlikely from spitting and it is likely that a four year old might have been sprayed or doused with something and, lacking the vocabulary to describe it, called it “spitting.”
That, notwithstanding, his illness might or might not be related to what actually occurred. More important at this time is that there be an accurate diagnosis of what has caused his cough; infection, an irritant, asthma?
Given the strange circumstances, the persistence and now recurrence of his cough it would not be reasonable for his doctor to order a blood count, examination of his sputum and a chest X-ray. Asthma is a possible diagnosis; bronchitis secondary to infection, another. For your peace of mind you might request that his doctor reevaluate his condition in 2-3 weeks, rather than six.
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