bawki t1_izkhzqf wrote

I just want to emphasise one point you made: usually there is no bacterial superinfection, the symptoms are, as you rightly pointed out, due to the damaged/irritated lining of the upper respiratory tract. Sadly that takes some time to heal.

I did a quick search and found one study which tried to estimate the rate of superinfection by evaluating CRP levels on first presentation compared to subsequent visits. This approach has its obvious limitations, but if we are conservative in our estimate by doubling the reported likelihood of 8,1%, it still shows how rare bacterial superinfections in URTI are.