Causes, incidence, and risk factors
Causes, incidence, and risk factors
Acute bronchitis generally follows a viral respiratory infection. At first, it affects your nose, sinuses, and throat and then spreads to the lungs. Sometimes, you may get another (secondary) bacterial infection in the airways.This means that bacteria infect the airways, in addition to the virus.
People at risk for acute bronchitis include:
The elderly, infants, and young children
Persons with heart or lung disease
Chronic bronchitis is a long-term condition. People have a cough that produces excessive mucus. To be diagnosed with chronic bronchitis, you must have a cough with mucus most days of the month for at least 3 months.
Chronic bronchitis is one type of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD for short. (Emphysema is another type of COPD.)
NCBI: National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine
Lung Disease & Respiratory Health Center
Acute bronchitis is usually caused by a virus. Often a person gets acute bronchitis after having an upper respiratory tract infection such as a cold or the flu. In rare cases, acute bronchitis is caused by bacteria.
Acute bronchitis also can be caused by breathing in things that irritate the bronchial tubes, such as smoke. It also can happen if a person inhales food or vomit into the lungs.
Bronchitis is inflammation of the mucous membranes
Bronchitis is inflammation of the mucous membranes of the bronchi, the airways that carry airflow from the trachea into the lungs. Bronchitis can be divided into two categories, acute and chronic, each of which has unique etiologies, pathologies, and therapies.
Acute bronchitis is characterized by the development of a cough, with or without the production of sputum, mucus that is expectorated (coughed up) from the respiratory tract. Acute bronchitis often occurs during the course of an acute viral illness such as the common cold or influenza. Viruses cause about 90% of cases of acute bronchitis, whereas bacteria account for less than 10%.
Chronic bronchitis, a type of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, is characterized by the presence of a productive cough that lasts for three months or more per year for at least two years. Chronic bronchitis most often develops due to recurrent injury to the airways caused by inhaled irritants. Cigarette smoking is the most common cause, followed by air pollution and occupational exposure to irritants.
Wikipedia online Encyclopedia
Bronchitis is an inflammation of the lining of your bronchial tubes, which carry air to and from your lungs. Bronchitis may be either acute or chronic.
Often developing from a cold or other respiratory infection, acute bronchitis is very common. Chronic bronchitis, a more serious condition, is a constant irritation or inflammation of the lining of the bronchial tubes, often due to smoking.
The Mayo Clinic Online
Cold and flu season: Bronchitis
Bronchitis occurs most often during the cold and flu season, usually coupled with an upper respiratory infection.
Several viruses cause bronchitis, including influenza A and B, commonly referred to as "the flu."
A number of bacteria are also known to cause bronchitis, such as Mycoplasma pneumoniae, which causes so-called "walking pneumonia."
Bronchitis also can occur when a person inhales irritating fumes or dust. Chemical solvents and smoke, including tobacco smoke, have been linked to acute bronchitis.
People at increased risk both of getting bronchitis and of having more severe symptoms include the elderly, those with weakened immune systems, smokers, and anyone with repeated exposure to lung irritants.c
Air is pulled into the lungs when we breathe, initially passing through the mouth, nose, and larynx (voicebox) into the trachea and continues en route to each lung via either the right or left bronchi (the bronchial tree - bronchi, bronchioles, and alveoli). Bronchi are formed as the lower part of the trachea divides into two tubes that lead to the lungs. As the bronchi get farther away from the trachea, each bronchial tube divides and gets smaller (resembling an inverted tree) to provide the air to lung tissue so that it can transfer oxygen to the blood stream and remove carbon dioxide (the waste product of metabolism).
What is Bronchitis?
When a person has bronchitis, it may be harder for air to pass in and out of the lungs, the tissues become irritated, and more mucus is produced. The most common symptom of bronchitis is a cough. When you breathe in (inhale), small, bristly hairs near the openings of your nostrils filter out dust, pollen, and other airborne particles. Bits that slip through become attached to the mucus membrane, which has tiny, hair-like structures called cilia on its surface. But sometimes germs get through the cilia and other defense systems in the respiratory tract and can cause illness.
People who have chronic bronchitis are more susceptible to bacterial infections of the airway and lungs, like pneumonia.
Bronchitis is an inflammation of the bronchial tubes, the airways that carry air to your lungs. It causes a cough that often brings up mucus, as well as shortness of breath, wheezing, and chest tightness. There are two main types of bronchitis: acute and chronic.
Chronic bronchitis is one type of COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease). The inflamed bronchi produce a lot of mucus. This leads to cough and difficulty getting air in and out of the lungs. Cigarette smoking is the most common cause. Breathing in other fumes and dusts over a long period of time may also cause chronic bronchitis. Treatment will help your symptoms, but chronic bronchitis is a long-term condition that keeps coming back or never goes away completely.
NIH: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
Bronchitis: characterized by inflammation of the bronchial tubes
Bronchitis is one of the top conditions for which patients seek medical care. It is characterized by inflammation of the bronchial tubes (or bronchi), the air passages that extend from the trachea into the small airways and alveoli. (See Clinical Presentation.)
Chronic bronchitis is defined clinically as cough with sputum expectoration for at least 3 months a year during a period of 2 consecutive years. Chronic bronchitis is associated with hypertrophy of the mucus-producing glands found in the mucosa of large cartilaginous airways. As the disease advances, progressive airflow limitation occurs, usually in association with pathologic changes of emphysema. This condition is called chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
Medscape from WebMD is a part of WebMD Health Professional Network that includes theHeart.org and eMedicine.com.
Bronchitis is an inflammation of the main air passages to the lungs. Bronchitis may be short-lived (acute) or chronic, meaning that it lasts a long time and often recurs.
New York Times Newspaper Online
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Contact Susan J. Keen,
RN, OCN at
CJW Med Center
email: Susan.Keen [at] hcahealthcare.com