Lybrate Logo
Get the App
For Doctors
Consult Online
Book Appointment
Ask a Question
Plan my Surgery
Health Feed
Health Feed
Find Doctors

Bacterial Infection: Treatment, Procedure, Cost and Side Effects

Last Updated: Jun 28, 2023

What is the Bacterial Infection?

Bacterial infections should not be confused with viral infections as the two are very different. Bacterial infections are caused by pathogenic bacteria and can take many forms. The type of bacterial infection one gets depends on the body area that has been affected by it. The different type of bacterial infections include bacterial skin infections such as cellulitis, impetigo, boils etc.; stomach infections caused by bacteria such as salmonella, vibrio, clostridium etc.; sexually transmitted bacterial infections such as chlamydia, syphilis, bacterila vaginosis etc.; and other bacterial infections, which include bacterial meningitis, urinary tract infections, otitis media and respiratory tract infections.

The commonest treatment method adopted to treat almost all types of bacterial infections includes the administration of antibiotics - whether it is in the form of tablets or topical ointments. Antibiotics are usually enough to cure bacterial infections altogether. However, for certain types of bacterial infections, vaccines can be used too, which will help prevent the onset of diseases such as tetanus, diphtheria, infleunza, typhoid etc.

What is the most common Bacterial Infection?

The most common Bacterial Infections may include the following:

  1. Food poisoning: Caused by bacteria Salmonella.
  2. GI distress: Caused due to infection with bacteria E.Coli.
  3. Tuberculosis: Causative bacteria is Mycobacterium tubercular.
  4. Bacterial pneumonia: The causative agent is Pseudomonas and Streptococcus pneumoniae.
  5. Ulcers: Caused due to infection with Helicobacter Pylori.

Are you contagious with a Bacterial Infection?

Not all Bacterial Infections are contagious, but Bacterial Infections may be contagious in some cases. The transmission of the infection usually takes place through close physical contact with an infected person, getting in contact with the body fluids such as through coughing, sneezing, or sexual contact, from mother to child during pregnancy or after birth, and contact with any contaminated surfaces.

Will a Bacterial Infection go away by itself?

The type of treatment in cases of Bacterial Infections usually depends upon the severity of the infection. Symptoms in case of acute Bacterial Infections may get resolved spontaneously in a duration of approx. two weeks, without undergoing treatment. However, in chronic cases when the symptoms persist for a longer duration, such as for 10 or more days, there is a need for the consultation with a doctor.

How do I know if I have a bacterial or viral infection?

Bacterial and viral infections do have many things in common such as symptoms. Hence the diagnosis is mainly based upon the medical history of the patient as well as the physical examination. Some lab tests such as blood and urine tests need also to be performed in some cases while culture tests and biopsy may also be preferred in some cases.

How do you test for Bacterial Infection?

Bacterial culture tests are done for the diagnosis in cases of Bacterial Infections. This can be done by taking the samples such as blood, urine, or skin, depending upon the location of infections in the body. The collected sample is put in an environment created in the lab to promote cell growth. It takes a few days for the results to come out.


How is the bacterial infection treatment done?

Irrespective of the type of bacterial infection one has, the doctor will recommend antibiotics as treatment. The treatment process will depend on the type of antibiotic one has been prescribed. For sexually transmitted bacterial infections as well as skin bacterial infections, antibiotic topical ointments will generally be prescribed. The patient simply has to apply this ointment on the affected area once or twice a day, depending on what the doctor prescribes. However, before applying the ointment, patients should make sure that the affected area is clean.

For other types of bacterial infections, a doctor may prescrible oral antibiotic drugs. The patient will have to take these tablets or capsules either once or twice a day, again depending on what the doctor says. The patient will be advised to have these medicines after a meal and one will aslo have to maintain a minimum of a 6 hour gap between one dosage and the next if the medicine has to be had twice a day. The patient may also be asked to have pills that treat stomach problems along with the antibiotics as antibiotics can cause stomach problems. As far as vaccines are considered, these are administered at local clinics and with the help of injections.

Who is eligible for the bacterial infection treatment? (When is the treatment done?)

Patients who suffer from any type of bacterial infection are eligible to be treated with the help of antibiotics. All healthy individuals are eligible for vaccines.

Who is not eligible for the bacterial infection treatment?

Pregnant women, patients whose bacterial infection is severe or life-threatening in nature as well as those who are allergic to the chemical compounds present in antibiotics are not eligible for this treatment. For vaccines, there's an age limit. So patients should consult with their doctor first.

Are there any side effects of bacterial infection Treatment?

Yes, side effects are likely as far as antibiotics are concerned. The commonly experienced side effects are severe allergic reactions, stomach cramps, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, headache and more. Side effects of the vaccine include but are not limited to are mild fever, pain, swelling or redness at the site of injection, fatigue and headache. One should contact their doctor immediately if they experience severe side effects.

What are the bacterial infection post-treatment guidelines?

One really doesn't have to follow any post treatment guidelines as such in case of bacterial infections. Patients can resume their daily activities even when they are being treated by antibiotics. However, in certain cases, some patients may experience weakness and doctors may advise having electrolytes, vitamin supplements and other energy boosting foods. In the case of vaccines, patients who get woozy should rest. Also, one should make lifestyle changes to reduce the chances of getting bacterial infections.

How long does it take to recover?

A typical antibiotic course is 5 days long, and usually the infection subsides completely by the end of those 5 days. However, if the infection is severe, the course maybe of 10 days, thereby doubling the recovery period as well.

How long do Bacterial Infections last?

The duration for which the Bacterial Infections may last usually depends upon the type of bacteria causing it as well as the severity of the infection. Usually, 10 to 14 days or more are the expected time duration for the symptoms to persist in case of Bacterial Infections which are a result of secondary infections. Ear infections, pneumonia, and sinusitis are some of the secondary infections that take even more than 10 to 14 days.

What is the price of the bacterial infection treatment in India?

The price of antibiotic medicines for bacterial infections range between Rs. 50 to Rs. 100. Vaccines cost around Rs. 600 per shot.

Are the results of the bacterial infection treatment permanent?

Antibiotics help in the complete cure of the bacterial infection concerned. However, the infection can occur again if the patient does not make lifestyle changes or is exposed to the pathogenic bacteria that caused it again. In the case of vaccines though, the patient will never get the infection in the first place. However, vaccines are not available for all types of infections.

What are the alternatives to the bacterial infection treatment?

Pathogenic bacteria have the ability to turn resistant to antibiotics over the course of time. Hence, medical science has been looking for an alternative cure and has come up with probiotics as a possible form of treatment for bacterial infections. However, patients should consult with their doctor before choosing this course of treatment.

Summary: Any infection caused due to bacteria is commonly known as a Bacterial Infection. The most common of them include Food poisoning, GI distress, Tuberculosis, Bacterial pneumonia, and Ulcers. The treatment methods of Bacterial Infections usually involve the application of antibiotics and The type of antibiotic depends upon the infection type. Amoxicillin, ciprofloxacin, and erythromycin are some of the commonly used antibiotics.


Popular Questions & Answers

View All

I am 23 year old. Fungal infection in my head p...


Dr. Pankhuri Agarwal


Hello, you should not have stopped abruptly and you need to take certain precautions for further ...

Sir pls give you r no or social i'd that I will...


Dr. Shaurya Rohatgi


Fungal infections in the groin are commonly referred to as jock itch or tinea cruris. They occur ...

I am suffering from jock itch from one week. In...


Dr. Narasimhalu C.R.V.(Professor)


No...contains steroid.. very dangerous... alternate safe cream direct private onli...

I have an infection i'm not sure what's happeni...


Dr. Tanu Priya


Hello dear. It may be a sign of pelvic or urinary infection. If needed do a pregnency test. For f...

Table of content

Content Details
Profile Image
Written ByDr. Pankaj Verma ACLS,POST GRADUATE COURSE IN RHEUMATOLOGY,Fellowship in Diabetes,MBBS,Post Graduate Course In Rheumatology,MD - Medicine,Masters in Psychotherapy and CounsellingInternal Medicine
Need more help 

15+ Years of Surgical Experience

All Insurances Accepted

EMI Facility Available at 0% Rate

Find Internal Medicine Specialist near me


Ask a free question

Get FREE multiple opinions from Doctors

posted anonymously

Having issues? Consult a doctor for medical advice