What is asthmatic bronchitis?

Asthmatic bronchitis refers to the incidence of acute bronchitis in a person with asthma. Acute bronchitis is a respiratory disease that causes inflammation in the bronchi, the passageways that move air into and out of the lungs. This inflammation results in respiratory congestion and shortness of breath. Asthma is a disorder that causes inflammation of the airways, leading to shortness of breath, chest tightness, and wheezing.

Acute bronchitis is a common respiratory disorder in the United States. Infants, young children, and elderly people have the highest risk of developing acute bronchitis. Acute bronchitis is commonly caused by upper respiratory viral infections. If you have asthma, your risk of acute bronchitis is increased because of an increased sensitivity to airway irritation and inflammation. Your risk of acute bronchitis is also increased if you smoke or are exposed to air pollution.

The signs and symptoms of asthmatic bronchitis vary among individuals, depending on the severity of the infection. Treatment for asthmatic bronchitis includes antibiotics, bronchodilators, anti-inflammatory drugs, and pulmonary hygiene techniques such as chest percussion (medical treatment in which a respiratory therapist pounds gently on the patient’s chest) and postural drainage (medical treatment in which the patient is placed in a slightly inverted position to promote the expectoration of sputum).

Healthy lifestyle practices, including good hand washing, drinking plenty of fluids, following a well-balanced diet, getting plenty of rest, and avoid smoking, can help prevent or improve asthmatic bronchitis.

Seek immediate medical care (call 911) if you have severe difficulty breathing, which may be combined with pale or blue lips, fast heart rate, and chest pressure.

Seek prompt medical care if you are being treated for asthmatic bronchitis but mild symptoms recur or are persistent.

SYMPTOMS

What are the symptoms of asthmatic bronchitis?

Symptoms of asthmatic bronchitis are related to inflammation of the lung airways and can vary in intensity among individuals.... Read more about asthmatic bronchitissymptoms

CAUSES

What causes asthmatic bronchitis?

Asthmatic bronchitis refers to the occurrence of acute bronchitis in conjunction with asthma (disorder that affects the lungs and is characterized by airway constriction that leads to shortness of breath, chest tightness, and wheezing). Acute bronchitis is a respiratory disease that causes inflammation in the bronchi, the passageways that move air into and out of the lungs. The inflammation results in respiratory congestion and shortness of breath. The most common cause of asthmatic bronchitis is an upper viral respiratory infection.... Read more about asthmatic bronchitiscauses

TREATMENTS

How is asthmatic bronchitis treated?

Treatment for asthmatic bronchitis begins with seeking medical care from your health care provider. The goal of treatment for asthmatic bronchitis is to reduce asthma-related bronchospasm and reduce congestion caused by the acute bronchitis. Asthma medications include long-term asthma control medications to prevent asthma attacks, which is especially important in the case of acute bronchitis. Short-term asthma medications are given in the event of an asthma attack. Acute bronchitis is not normally treated with antibiotics, since the most common cause is a viral infection. Expectorants can help thin mucus in the airways, making it easier to cough up mucus.... Read more about asthmatic bronchitistreatments

Medical Reviewer: All content has been reviewed by board-certified physicians under the direction of Rich Klasco, M.D., FACEP. Last Annual Review Date: May 2, 2011 Copyright: © Copyright 2011 Health Grades, Inc. All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or reprinted without permission from Health Grades, Inc. Use of this information is governed by the HealthGrades User Agreement.

This Article is Filed Under: Lungs, Breathing and Respiration


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