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Cold and Flu

Are frequnt colds a symptom of somthing else?

06/10/2009

Question:

I exercise moderately, eat a healthy diet, and take a few supplements, (such as garlic capsules, a multi-vitamin, and vitamin C) yet I still contract colds on average about every two to three weeks and have a chronic "runny nose". This has been going on for over a year and is extremely bothersome. Do you think that I may be having frequent colds because of an underlying medical condition? I had a bout with anorexia about a year and a half ago, but am not sure if this lowered my immune system drastically or not.

Answer:

Congratulations on your healthy lifestyle! In answer to your question, I do not know why you are having frequent colds. You may be having frequent colds because you are getting infected sequentially with different viruses. You may also have allergies or other underlying medical condition that makes you more susceptible to colds or causes your symptoms to be more severe. I recommend that you bring your concerns to your personal physician for evaluation.

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Response by:

John  Andrews, MD, MPH John Andrews, MD, MPH
Assistant Senior Vice President Medical Center
Director University Health Services
University of Cincinnati