Here are the top interesting facts about bronchitis:
#1 It is an inflammation of the air passages between the lungs and the nose, including the trachea and the larger air tubes of the lung which bring air in from the bronchi.
#2 This condition may cause chest pain, wheezing (a squeaky sound when you breathe), shortness of breath, and a low fever.
#3 In 1808, one of the earliest records of this condition was made by Charles Badham, an English university professor, who described it and coined its title.
Acute Bronchitis (AB)
#4 AB is an acute respiratory infection which is characterized by a cough without or with phlegm production which may last for up to 21 days.
#5 It is usually caused by a number of viruses which can infect the respiratory tract and attack the bronchial tubes.
The same viruses which cause colds can cause AB as well. This condition is contagious and can spread through droplets from sneezing, coughing, or talking.
#6 It is more frequent in winter and commonly develops following a sore throat, common cold, or flu. It is called acute irritative bronchitis when it is caused by inhaling fumes, dust, or smoke.
#7 Cigarette damages the tiny hair-like structures in the lungs that are accountable for brushing out irritants, debris, and excess mucus.
Therefore, if you are a smoker and come down with AB, it will be much harder for you to recover.
Chronic Bronchitis (CB)
#8 This condition is more serious and keeps coming back or doesn’t go away at all. It is characterized by a cough which occurs daily with sputum production which lasts for at least 3 months, 2 years consecutively.
#9 It can be caused by untreated flu or the common cold. Individuals suffering from the acid reflux disease have an increased risk of developing this condition.
#10 For both forms, the most common symptom is a hacking cough. This cough may make the sufferer spit out mucus that can be clear, green, yellow-grey, or white – rarely, it may be streaked with blood.
#11 Other signs and symptoms include – shortness of breath, fatigue, muscle aches, slight fever (37.5° to 38° C or 100° to 101° F), headaches, nasal congestion, and a sore throat.
#12 AB is usually caused by a virus like those which cause influenza and the common cold. Smoking is the main cause of CB.
#13 According to research, there is a correlation between cured meat intake and the risk of this condition.
#14 Poor nutrition is also linked to a decreased immune function and an increased risk of infections, including this one.
#15 With more than 100 million ambulatory care visits, AB is the 5th most common reason why adults in the United States see their doctor.
Also, about 5 percent of the adult population seeks medical advice for this condition per year.
#16 Approximately 5 percent of adults and 6 percent of children self-report an episode of AB per year, plus, about 90 percent of them seek medical advice.
#17 More than 10 million people in the United States had CB every year, and 7 out of 10 cases involved people over the age of 45.
#18 About 17 percent of deaths in children under 1 year of age was due to a lung disease, in 2010.
#19 In Holland, 12 percent of men and 9 percent of women, being chronic obstructive pulmonary disease-free at the age of 40, will develop it during their further life.
#20 Worldwide, about 65 million individuals have moderate or severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. In addition, it is estimated that approximately 3 million deaths were caused by a chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in 2015.
#21 To diagnose this condition, your healthcare professional will discuss your medical and family history, review symptoms, as well as he may order some lung function testing, chest X-ray, and blood testing.
#22 In most cases, AB will clear up by itself within several weeks without the need for allopathic treatment. Also, cough meds almost never make the patient feel better, however, some can help a little at night if a cough keeps him from sleeping.
If you have CB and also have been diagnosed with the chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, you may need drugs to help clear away mucus and to open the airways.
Although over 90% of bronchitis infections are caused by viruses, about 2/3 of the sufferers in the US diagnosed with the condition are treated with antibiotics.
#23 The best method to prevent this condition is not to smoke. Moreover, it is very important to not be around secondhand smoke. Actually, more than 9 in 10 individuals with CB have a history of smoking.
According to statistics, CB occurs in about 14 percent of female and 18 percent of male smokers compared to 6 percent and 7 percent of non-smokers, respectively.
#24 Women are more exposed than men to lung damage from cigarette smoke since their lungs are smaller and estrogen (the main female sex hormone) has an important role in worsening lung disease.
#25 Other airway irritants (like – chemical fumes, air pollution, and dust) can make any chronic obstructive pulmonary disease worse.