Acute respiratory infections are one of the leading causes of death and disability in the world.1
Respiratory tract infections (RTIs) include both upper tract infections, like the common cold, and lower tract infections, such as pneumonia, bronchitis, and tuberculosis. While most upper respiratory infections can resolve on their own, lower respiratory tract infections can pose a substantial health challenge, especially for infants, the elderly, and the immunocompromised.2,3
Respiratory infections are caused by a wide variety of pathogens. Viruses like influenza A and B, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) command much attention, but similar symptoms may also be presented by other agents, including bacteria like Streptococcus and Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB, TB).