What are the symptoms of bronchiectasis?
Bronchiectasis causes bronchial airway damage and chronic congestion, as well as a number of other symptoms. The symptoms can vary in intensity among individuals.
Common symptoms of bronchiectasis
You may experience bronchiectasis symptoms daily or just once in a while. At times, any of these bronchiectasis symptoms can be severe:
- Bad breath
- Chest pain or pressure
- Cough that gets more severe over time
- Coughing up blood (hemoptysis)
- Coughing up clear, yellow, light brown, or green mucus
- Pale skin or pallor
- Shortness of breath or rapid breathing (tachypnea)
- Swollen tissue beneath the nail beds (finger clubbing)
- Unexplained weight loss
- Wheezing (whistling sound made with breathing)
Serious symptoms that might indicate a life-threatening condition
In some cases, bronchiectasis can be life threatening. Seek immediate medical care (call 911) if you, or someone you are with, have any of these life-threatening symptoms including:
- Bluish coloration of the lips or fingernails
- Change in level of consciousness or alertness, such as passing out or unresponsiveness
- Rapid heart rate (tachycardia)
- Respiratory or breathing problems, such as shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, labored breathing, wheezing, not breathing, or choking
What is bronchiectasis?
Bronchiectasis is a respiratory disease that affects the elastic properties of the bronchial tubes, the main airways of the lungs. Bronchiectasis results in severe congestion, a decreased ability to effectively expel sputum (mucus from the lower airways), and shortness of breath.... Read more about bronchiectasis introduction
What causes bronchiectasis?
Bronchiectasis is caused by damage to the lining of the main airways of the lungs (bronchi), usually the result of a pre-existing infection. The walls of the bronchi lose the capability to allow you to effectively cough up sputum, or mucus, leading to further congestion and damage. Cystic fibrosis is a common cause of bronchiectasis, but immune disorders, such as HIV/AIDS, can also play a role in the development of bronchiectasis.... Read more about bronchiectasis causes
How is bronchiectasis treated?
Treatment for bronchiectasis begins with seeking medical care from your health care provider. The goal of treatment is to help clear congestion and decrease infection. In severe cases that do not respond to therapy or that are accompanied by severe bleeding, your health care provider may recommend surgical resection of the affected air passages.... Read more about bronchiectasis treatments