Bronchitis is inflammation (thickening and/or swelling) and increased mucus production of the lining of of the main air passages to the lungs
Bronchial inflammation can be caused by smoke, bacterial or viral infections, chemicals, pollution, and/or acids from your stomach (gastroesophageal reflux disease also called GERD). When the bronchi become inflamed or irritated, a thick mucus forms inside the airways, and this makes it difficult to breathe; so A person may also experience a shortness of breath, but bronchitis usually manifests itself as a cough with headache, chills and a slight fever.
Bronchitis may be chronic or acute in nature
Many people have had a brief attack of bronchitis, often after they have had a cold. The attack usually lasts for about a week, but the cough may last up to three weeks. During a bout with bronchitis, you may experience cough with large amounts of mucus production, and sometimes, a fever. This brief type of bronchitis is called Acute Bronchitis, and each attack does NOT last long, does NOT come back repeatedly, and lung function returns to normal after the bronchitis infection has ended.
Chronic bronchitis is a condition in which the airways in the lungs become inflamed. In chronic bronchitis, the condition lasts for a long time or continues to recur. Chronic bronchitis is one form of an illness called Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD.
Prognosis depends on the severity of the bronchitis. Patients with mild or moderate chronic bronchitis can usually keep the condition well-controlled with medication and therapy to improve lung function. Patients with severe chronic bronchitis may have a more difficult time controlling symptoms.
The best ways to improve prognosis of chronic bronchitis is to begin treatment early and stop smoking, avoid secondhand cigarette smoke, air pollution, infections, and substances that cause allergic reactions.
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