Bronchitis is a viral infection that can last from 6 weeks to 2 years. Symptoms include difficulty breathing and a hacking cough that produces phlegm. Acute bronchitis may be accompanied by an upper respiratory infection. Chronic bronchitis, most often seen in heavy smokers, can lead to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Bronchitis is treated with rest, plenty of fluids, and avoiding smoking and fumes. In chronic cases, inhaled steroids and oxygen supplementation may be necessary. Follow the links below to find WebMD's comprehensive coverage of how bronchitis is contracted, its symptoms, how to treat it, and much more.
Bronchitis: Definition, Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis, Treatment
Learn more from WebMD about the causes, symptoms, treatment, and prevention of bronchitis.
Learn more about common flu complications, what to look out for, and when to call the doctor.
Is bronchitis contagious?
Can you catch bronchitis or give it to someone else?
When a Cold Becomes Bronchitis
What should you do when a cold turns into bronchitis, also called a chest cold? Find out when you can treat it at home and when you need to see your doctor.
Cough Medicine: Should You or Shouldn’t You?
Do cough medicines really work? Get the facts on cough medicine effectiveness and side effects.
Short of Breath? Tips for COPD Breathlessness
Anxiety and panic are normal reactions to feeling you can’t get your breath. It’s also hard to watch someone you care for struggle to breathe. WebMD offers tips that COPD patients and caregivers can use during episodes of breathlessness.
Living With COPD: About Treatments, Exercise, and Diet
Living with COPD presents 13 million Americans with new challenges, and opportunities for better health. Are you one? Then read on.