Bronchitis

Bronchitis
Bronchitis.jpg
Figure A shows the location of the lungs and bronchial tubes. Figure B is an enlarged view of a normal bronchial tube. Figure C is an enlarged view of a bronchial tube with bronchitis.
Pronunciation
  • bron-kye-tis
SpecialtyInfectious disease, pulmonology
SymptomsCoughing up mucus, wheezing, shortness of breath, chest discomfort[1]
TypesAcute, chronic[1]
FrequencyAcute: ~5% of people a year[2][3]
Chronic: ~5% of people[3]

Bronchitis is inflammation of the bronchi (large and medium-sized airways) in the lungs.[1] Symptoms include coughing up mucus, wheezing, shortness of breath, and chest discomfort.[1] Bronchitis is divided into two types: acute and chronic.[1] Acute bronchitis is also known as a chest cold.[1]

Acute bronchitis usually has a cough that lasts around three weeks.[4] In more than 90% of cases the cause is a viral infection.[4] These viruses may be spread through the air when people cough or by direct contact.[1] Risk factors include exposure to tobacco smoke, dust, and other air pollution.[1] A small number of cases are due to high levels of air pollution or bacteria such as Mycoplasma pneumoniae or Bordetella pertussis.[4][5] Treatment of acute bronchitis typically involves rest, paracetamol (acetaminophen), and NSAIDs to help with the fever.[6][7]

Chronic bronchitis is defined as a productive cough that lasts for three months or more per year for at least two years.[8] Most people with chronic bronchitis have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).[9] Tobacco smoking is the most common cause, with a number of other factors such as air pollution and genetics playing a smaller role.[10] Treatments include quitting smoking, vaccinations, rehabilitation, and often inhaled bronchodilators and steroids.[11] Some people may benefit from long-term oxygen therapy or lung transplantation.[11]

Acute bronchitis is one of the most common diseases.[6][12] About 5% of adults are affected and about 6% of children have at least one episode a year.[2][13] In 2010, COPD affected 329 million people or nearly 5% of the global population.[3] In 2013, it resulted in 2.9 million deaths, a change from 2.4 million deaths in 1990.[14]

Acute bronchitis

Bronchitis

Acute bronchitis, also known as a chest cold, is short term inflammation of the bronchi of the lungs.[1][4] The most common symptom is a cough.[4] Other symptoms include coughing up mucus, wheezing, shortness of breath, fever, and chest discomfort. The infection may last from a few to ten days.[1] The cough may persist for several weeks afterwards, with the total duration of symptoms usually around three weeks.[1][4] Some have symptoms for up to six weeks.[6]

Cause

In more than 90% of cases, the cause is a viral infection.[4] These viruses may spread through the air when people cough or by direct contact. Risk factors include exposure to tobacco smoke, dust, and other air pollution.[1] A small number of cases are due to high levels of air pollution or bacteria such as Mycoplasma pneumoniae or Bordetella pertussis.[4][5]

Diagnosis

Diagnosis is typically based on a person's signs and symptoms.[15] The color of the sputum does not indicate if the infection is viral or bacterial. Determining the underlying organism is usually not required.[4] Other causes of similar symptoms include asthma, pneumonia, bronchiolitis, bronchiectasis, and COPD.[4][2] A chest X-ray may be useful to detect pneumonia.[4]

Another common sign of bronchitis is a cough which lasts ten days to three weeks. If the cough lasts a month or a year, it may become chronic bronchitis. In addition, a fever may be present. Acute bronchitis is normally caused by a viral infection. Typically, these infections are rhinovirus, parainfluenza, or influenza. No specific testing is normally needed in order to diagnose acute bronchitis.[16]

Treatment

Prevention is by not smoking and avoiding other lung irritants. Frequent hand washing may also be protective.[17] Treatment for acute bronchitis usually involves rest, paracetamol (acetaminophen), and NSAIDs to help with the fever.[6][7] Cough medicine has little support for its use, and it is not recommended in children who are less than six years of age.[4][18] There is tentative evidence that salbutamol may be useful in people with wheezing; however, it may result in nervousness and tremors.[4][19] Antibiotics should generally not be used.[20] An exception is when acute bronchitis is due to pertussis. Tentative evidence supports honey and pelargonium to help with symptoms.[4] Getting plenty of rest and drinking enough fluids are often recommended as well.[21]

Epidemiology

Acute bronchitis is one of the most-common diseases.[6][12] About 5% of adults are affected, and about 6% of children have at least one episode a year.[2][13] It occurs more often in the winter.[2] More than 10 million people in the US visit a doctor each year for this condition, with about 70% receiving antibiotics which are mostly not needed.[6] There are efforts to decrease the use of antibiotics in acute bronchitis.[12]

Other Languages
Afrikaans: Brongitis
asturianu: Bronquitis
azərbaycanca: Bronxit
تۆرکجه: برونخیت
беларуская: Бранхіт
български: Бронхит
bosanski: Bronhitis
català: Bronquitis
čeština: Bronchitida
dansk: Bronkitis
Deutsch: Bronchitis
Ελληνικά: Βρογχίτιδα
español: Bronquitis
Esperanto: Bronkito
euskara: Bronkitis
فارسی: برونشیت
Gaeilge: Broincíteas
galego: Bronquite
한국어: 기관지염
հայերեն: Բրոնխաբորբ
हिन्दी: श्वसनीशोथ
Bahasa Indonesia: Bronkitis
íslenska: Berkjubólga
italiano: Bronchite
Basa Jawa: Bronkitis
қазақша: Бронхит
Kirundi: Boronshite
Кыргызча: Бронхит
latviešu: Bronhīts
Lëtzebuergesch: Bronchite
lietuvių: Bronchitas
magyar: Hörghurut
Bahasa Melayu: Bronkitis
Nederlands: Bronchitis
日本語: 気管支炎
norsk: Bronkitt
norsk nynorsk: Bronkitt
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Bronxit
پنجابی: برونکائیٹس
ភាសាខ្មែរ: ជំងឺហើមសួត
português: Bronquite
română: Bronșită
русский: Бронхит
Scots: Bronchitis
Simple English: Bronchitis
slovenščina: Bronhitis
svenska: Bronkit
татарча/tatarça: Бронхит
Türkçe: Bronşit
Türkmençe: Bronhit
українська: Бронхіт
اردو: قصباتس
Tiếng Việt: Viêm phế quản
中文: 支气管炎