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chronic bronchitis

Chronic bronchitis

is a progressive, recurring inflammation of the lower airways of the lungs called the bronchi and the bronchioles. The hallmark of chronic bronchitis is a persistent wet cough and difficulty with breathing that slowly gets worse over time. Chronic bronchitis is a kind of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Chronic bronchitis is a seriously disabling disease with the potential for major complications. Chronic bronchitis is often eventually fatal and is also a major cause of disability. Chronic bronchitis differs from acute bronchitis in that acute bronchitis is caused by a viral infection or bacterial infection and is a relatively short-term illness.

Chronic bronchitis develops most often as a result of smoking, but can also occur from long-term inhalation of irritants into the lungs, such as such as air pollution, chemical fumes, or dust. Chronic bronchitis can also develop due to long-term exposure to second hand smoke. The longer the lungs are exposed to smoke, pollution, or irritants, the higher the risk for developing chronic bronchitis.

In healthy lungs, air and oxygen pass through the upper respiratory tract and into the bronchioles and the alveoli in the lungs. The alveoli are tiny hollow sack-like structures where oxygen is absorbed in to the bloodstream. However, long-term inhalation of smoke or other irritants results in a loss of elasticity in the bronchioles and alveoli, destruction of the walls between alveoli, and swelling and inflammation. There is also an abnormally large amount of mucus production, which can block airways.

The symptoms of chronic bronchitis include shortness of breath, a loose cough that produces large amount of mucus, and chest tightness. Complications of chronic bronchitis can be serious, even life threatening, and result in additional symptoms. For more symptoms and complications, refer to symptoms of chronic bronchitis.

Making a diagnosis of chronic bronchitis begins with taking a thorough medical history, including symptoms, smoking history and exposure to lung irritants. A physical examination is also performed and includes listening with a stethoscope to the sounds that lungs make during respiration. Lung sounds that may point to a diagnosis of chronic bronchitis include wheezing and decreased lung sounds.

Diagnostic testing can include lung function tests, such as a spirometry, which measures how much air is moved in and out of the lungs. A chest X-ray and CT scan of the chest can evaluate such factors as the presence of other conditions that may occur with or worsen chronic bronchitis, such as pneumonia and congestive heart failure. An arterial blood gas tests a sample of blood taken from an artery for many parameters of effective breathing, including the oxygen level in the blood.

It is possible that a diagnosis of chronic bronchitis can be missed or delayed because the disease progresses gradually and because symptoms are similar to symptoms of other diseases and conditions. For more information conditions and diseases that can mimic chronic bronchitis, refer to misdiagnosis of chronic bronchitis.

There is no cure for chronic bronchitis. The damage done to the airways in the lungs by smoke or other irritants is permanent and is not reversible. However, with regular medical care and consistent patient compliance with treatments and lifestyle changes, the symptoms of chronic bronchitis can be minimized and progression of the disease can be slowed. For more information on treatment, refer to treatment of chronic bronchitis.

With our many years of experience, our centre provides effective treatment with combination of natural herbs which is very effective in curing this illness. Please mail us your problems and we will get back to you soonest possible.

 

(Wong Medical Centre)

No. 14/16, Jln Lapangan Siber 1,Bandar Cyber 1,

Bandar Cyber 31350 Ipoh Perak.

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No. 54, Jalan Pasir Putih

Taman Shatin

31650 Ipoh

Perak

Contact No. : 012-4520077

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