Anatomy and physiology of the lung.
The lungs are two sac-like organs located in the chest cavity.
The main windpipe (trachea) breaks into right and left bronchi, which enter each lung.
The bronchi are then further divided into smaller branches called bronchioles.
Definition of "bronchitis."
It is the inflammation of the bronchi caused by viral, bacterial, or mycoplasmal infections.
Irritation and inflammation stimulate production of mucous and bronchospasm.
Bronchitis can be acute or chronic.
Bronchitis is considered chronic if a recurrent cough persists at least three months of the year for at least two successive years.
Factors that increase the risk of bronchitis.
Positive family history.
Respiratory irritants (dust, smoking, cold, damp air, etc.).
Poor defense system.
Signs and symptoms of bronchitis.
Mucoid or purulent sputum production.
Shortness of breath.
Loss of appetite.
Measures to prevent or manage bronchitis.
Get adequate rest.
East a well-balanced meal. (Provide "Daily Food Guide" handout.)
Avoid smoking because it destroys ciliary action and increases secretions.
Avoid all respiratory irritants such as smoke, dust, air pollution, etc.
Report changes in sputum characteristics in cough pattern.
Prevent respiratory infections.
Avoid exposure to persons with upper respiratory infections.
Avoid crowds and poorly ventilated areas.
Obtain treatment for early symptoms of respiratory infections.
Receive flu and pneumonia immunizations.
Perform measures to thin or remove secretions.
Maintain a large fluid intake of at least three quarts per day (if not contraindicated) and adequate humidity to thin secretions.
Perform effective coughing techniques. (Provide "Effective Coughing Techniques" handout.)
Perform percussion and postural drainage as ordered.
Take medication as ordered.
Possible complications of bronchitis.
Right-sided heart failure.
Acute respiratory failure.