Bronchitis Causing Chest Infection, Chest Cold
At Statcare Urgent Care, we not only diagnose and treat your asthma or bronchitis, we can also treat you without the need for an appointment. We are open 365 days a year including evenings, weekends, and holidays.
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Statcare serves the Long Island residents of Nassau County, Suffolk County, Queens, Manhattan and Brooklyn, as well as the Bronx in NYC. If you have any questions about any conditions we treat or services we offer, call (917) 310-3371 today.
Bronchitis / Chest Cold FAQs
A “chest cold” is an inflammation or an infection of the lower respiratory tract in the lungs that is usually preceded by an upper respiratory infection or influenza (flu/H1N1) that settled in the lungs. The term chest cold refers to a medical condition called “acute bronchitis.”
A chest cold is a common disease that occurs at any time of the year. Asthma or asthmatic bronchitis is characterized by persistent cough. It is much more common in the winter and spring months.
Chest colds are common in young adults and the elderly. People particularly at risk for developing bronchitis include smokers and those exposed to air pollutants or lung irritants, as well as those with a history of COPD, chronic bronchitis, emphysema, congestive heart failure, and/or kidney disease.
There is a severe inflammation of the airways in the lungs called the bronchi (acute bronchitis) and the bronchioles (bronchiolitis). The bronchial tubes swell and produce mucus, which causes a person to cough. Asthma and asthmatic-type wheezing can co-exist, causing bouts of coughing especially at night.
A diagnosis of bronchitis can be delayed because symptoms may be mild or possibly attributable to other conditions that precede it or are still lingering on.
Common symptoms of bronchitis include a wet cough with mucus (white sputum or yellow phlegm), bouts of coughing, chest pain with coughing, shortness of breath, and fever with chills. A chest X-ray may or may not show evidence of an infection but can help rule out pneumonia.
Over-the-counter medications or home remedies may provide relief from some symptoms. Often, the OTC cough syrups will thicken secretions, increase mucus plugging and cause wheezing, precipitating asthma. In those predisposed to having asthma, a full blown asthma attack may follow.
A medical exam by our provider can help determine and differentiate asthma, asthmatic bronchitis, and acute bronchitis – all of which are treated differently.
Antibiotics will help shorten the duration of bacterial infections and are particularly helpful in those patients who have predisposing conditions or co-existing medical conditions. Steroids and inhalers may be needed, especially if it is asthma.
Untreated, bronchitis can last a long time. Complications of bronchitis or a chest cold include progression to pneumonia – a serious and life-threatening condition.