v3= Acute Bronchitis - Symptoms, causes and treatment | Health 2023

Acute Bronchitis - Symptoms, causes and treatment

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Acute Bronchitis - Symptoms, causes and treatment
Acute Bronchitis - Symptoms, causes and treatment

Acute bronchitis is inflammation or irritation of the bronchi that lasts for 10–14 days. Bronchi itself is a channel that functions to send air from the throat to the lungs

Acute bronchitis is quite common. According to research, 44 out of 1,000 adults experience acute bronchitis each year. As many as 82% of the incidence indicates that acute bronchitis strikes at the change of seasons.

Acute Bronchitis - Alodokter

Acute bronchitis is generally characterized by a cough that lasts up to 3 weeks. If it lasts more than 3 weeks, the condition is called chronic bronchitis.

Causes of Acute Bronchitis

Acute bronchitis is generally caused by a viral infection. The infection makes the bronchi become inflamed so that the respiratory tract becomes narrow and filled with mucus. Mucus that collects in the respiratory tract is the body's natural response to fighting infection.

Besides viral infection, acute bronchitis can also be caused by several other conditions, namely:

  • Bacterial infection
  • Exposure to irritating substances, such as dust and smoke
  • Gastric acid reflux disease (GERD)

Risk factors for acute bronchitis

Although it can happen to anyone, there are several factors that can increase a person's risk of suffering from acute bronchitis, namely:

  • Male gender
  • Below 5 years old (toddler) or over 50 years old (elderly)
  • Smoking or frequent exposure to cigarette smoke (passive)
  • Frequently exposed to harmful substances, such as dust or chemicals
  • Has a weak immune system, for example due to HIV/AIDS or chemotherapy for cancer treatment
  • Have had asthma before
  • Suffering from gastric acid reflux disease (GERD)
  • Not getting influenza or pneumonia vaccine

Acute Bronchitis Symptoms

Symptoms that can appear due to acute bronchitis include:

  • Cough with white, yellow, or green phlegm
  • Shortness of breath
  • chest pain
  • Sore throat
  • Fever
  • Shiver
  • Muscle and back pain
  • Weak
  • Headache

Because the common cause is viral or bacterial infection, acute bronchitis can be transmitted from person to person. Transmission can occur when an infected person coughs or sneezes so that the splash of saliva spreads in the air, then enters the nose or mouth of another person.

In addition to splashing the patient's saliva, the virus can also be spread when someone holds a contaminated object, then touches their eyes, nose, or mouth, without washing their hands first.

When to see a doctor

The symptoms of acute bronchitis last no more than 3 weeks. Check with a doctor if you experience the above symptoms and last more than 3 weeks, or the symptoms occur repeatedly.

You also need to see a doctor if you experience any of the following symptoms:

  • Fever over 38°C or more
  • Cough with phlegm accompanied by blood
  • Difficulty breathing

Diagnosis of Acute Bronchitis

The doctor will ask questions regarding the symptoms experienced by the patient and the patient's medical history. After that, the doctor will perform a physical examination, including listening to the patient's lungs using a stethoscope.

To establish a diagnosis, the doctor will perform a follow-up examination in the form of:

  • Blood gas analysis, to measure oxygen levels in the blood
  • Blood test, to detect infection in the body
  • Sputum examination, to find out the type of bacteria that causes acute bronchitis
  • Lung function test, to measure how well the lungs are able to breathe, by asking the patient to inhale and exhale using a spirometer
  • Chest X-ray, to see the condition of the inside of the lungs

Acute Bronchitis Treatment

Acute bronchitis is generally classified as mild and the symptoms that arise can subside on their own. However, doctors can give some medicines to patients to relieve symptoms, namely:

  • Pain and fever relievers, such as ibuprofen and paracetamol
  • Cough and cold relievers, such as guaifenesin or erdostein

In addition to the above medicines, patients can also perform self-care at home to relieve symptoms and speed up healing, namely by:

  • Drink water every 1-2 hours.
  • Enough rest.
  • Quit smoking or stay away from cigarette smoke.
  • Use indoor humidifier.
  • Inhale warm water vapor, to relieve respiratory tract
  • Use a mask if you are active or outdoors

Complications of Acute Bronchitis

If not treated properly, acute bronchitis can cause several complications, such as:

  • Infection of the bloodstream (bacteremia)
  • Pneumonia
  • Chronic bronchitis, especially if acute bronchitis occurs repeatedly
  • Coughing up blood (hemoptysis)

Bronchitis Prevention

There are a number of efforts that can be made to reduce the risk of acute bronchitis, namely:

  • Wash hands with soap and running water regularly
  • Don't smoke and avoid cigarette smoke
  • Cover your mouth and nose when you sneeze
  • Get the flu or pneumonia vaccine
  • Avoid exposure to harmful substances or air pollution
  • Make sure to get enough sleep and rest
  • Consuming he althy and nutritious foods, such as vegetables or fruits

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