Q&A with Dr. Kiskila: Bronchitis

Author: Nathan Kiskila, MD

Question- Dr. Kiskila, what is bronchitis?

Answer- Bronchitis is an upper respiratory infection that develops when the airways in the lungs, which are called the bronchial tubes, become inflamed and cause coughing, often with mucus production. 

Question- How do you get bronchitis?

Answer- Bronchitis typically happens when a person gets a cold or the flu, but can be because of any respiratory infection, like a virus. A person can develop chronic bronchitis by smoking cigarettes, air pollution, dust, and toxic gases in the environment or workplace. 

Question- What are the symptoms of bronchitis?

Answer- Cough that can last weeks, and may become productive with phlegm that is clear, yellow or green. Usually people with bronchitis do not have a fever. Other symptoms may include shortness of breath, chest discomfort, and fatigue.

Question- How do you treat bronchitis?

Answer- Treat the symptoms of bronchitis with cough and cold medicines, humidified warm and moist air. Support your immune system by drinking plenty of fluids, getting rest and treating any other symptoms like fevers with Tylenol or ibuprofen. Sometimes antibiotics or breathing inhalers are prescribed.

Question- Can bronchitis be prevented?  If so, how?

Answer- The best way to prevent bronchitis is similar to preventing most infections. Keep germs away from your body by washing your hands, boosting your immune system and staying healthy. To reduce your risk for chronic bronchitis it’s best to avoid cigarette smoke. 

The information provided is for general interest only and should not be misconstrued as a diagnosis, prognosis, or treatment recommendation. This information does not in any way constitute the practice of medicine, or any other health care profession. Readers are directed to consult their health care provider regarding their specific health situation. Marque Medical is not liable for any action taken by a reader based upon this information.

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