Acute Illness Treatment Questions and Answers

Have you come down with an illness and need it treated right away? Help is available. Talk to our team of medical professionals at Memorial Medical Center & Weight Loss in Houston, TX. We are open 6 days a week and we accept walk-ins. For more information please call (281) 589-8500 or book an appointment online.

Acute Illness Treatment Questions and Answers
Acute Illness Treatment Questions and Answers

When should you go to the doctor or urgent care for acute illness?

With so many options available now for the treatment of acute illness, it can be hard to determine where to go and when. If you are unclear, you can always call either your primary care physician’s office or the nearest urgent care and they can help you determine what could be your best option. It can also be hard to know when you should get checked by a doctor or when you should stay home and wait for the symptoms to pass. For nagging symptoms that aren’t clearing up after a few days, but also aren’t getting worse, it’s a good idea to make an appointment with your primary care physician to get looked at. Sudden pain, bleeding, sore throat, inner ear pain, severe cough or coughing up mucus, and many other symptoms warrant a trip to the doctor. Symptoms can come on suddenly or can build over time, but in either case if they are impacting your ability to move, breathe, speak or hear and go about your day-to-day tasks, you will need to seek medical attention.

What is acute illness?

An acute illness is defined as an illness that develops quickly, lasts for a relatively short amount of time, and is severe or intense in its symptoms and the onset of them. In most cases, acute illnesses can be treated with some form of medical intervention such as prescription or over-the-counter medication, or from simple rest. Not all acute illnesses require medical intervention, sometimes they simply need to run their course through your body. Either way, an acute illness is also one that patients fully recover from with no long-term lingering symptoms or side effects from the illness. An illness that doesn’t respond to treatment lasts for more than a month or has lingering side effects could be considered a chronic illness. Repeat cases of the same acute illness happening on a frequent basis can also be classified as chronic illnesses that will require more specialized treatment to find the root cause of the illness.

Do I need a referral to see a doctor for my acute illness?

Most acute illnesses can be treated by your primary care physician or a doctor in urgent care. In either of these cases, a referral is not needed to see a doctor for treatment of an acute illness. Acute illnesses usually come on suddenly and last for only a short time, usually less than a month. However, an acute illness could be the sign of something more serious or the start of a chronic illness that would require further investigation into the root cause of the symptoms. If further testing or specialized treatment is needed for the acute illness, your doctor can refer you to a specialist who can properly diagnose your illness and provide you with a recommended treatment plan. Acute illnesses with symptoms that don’t fully go away or that repeat themselves on a frequent basis may need to be classified as chronic illnesses. In the case of a chronic illness, you may want to seek the expertise of a specialized doctor in your type of symptoms. Your family doctor can help you to determine if your symptoms require you to seek out treatment from a specialized doctor and should be able to refer you to one they know and are comfortable with.

When should you see a doctor for acute illness?

Not all acute illnesses require medical treatment, in some cases like a cold, our bodies will fight off the bacteria on their own and clear up in the space of one to two weeks. However, if your symptoms are not going away or are getting worse, or if additional symptoms start to appear, it is best to see a doctor to rule out a more serious illness. You should also see a doctor for an acute illness if you have other serious health conditions that can be complicated or aggravated by an acute illness. Medication conflicts are also an important consideration if you are thinking about taking anything for your illness. It is best to check in with your primary care physician prior to taking any additional medications, whether they are prescription or over-the-counter if you are already taking medication for another reason.

For more details please call (281) 589-8500 or book an appointment online. We serve patients from Houston TX, West University Place TX, Bellaire TX, Jacinto City TX, Galena Park, TX, and South Houston TX.


14629 Memorial Drive,
Houston, TX 77079