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The Link Between Asthma and Bronchitis

woman caring for child with nebulizer

The Link Between Asthma & Bronchitis

Take a deep breath. Want to know what just happened in your body when you did this? Essentially, air entered your nose and traveled down your throat and into the bronchial tubes (a collection of air passageways). As long as those tubes are not inflamed, the air you just breathed in will easily reach your lungs so that it can be transported to your body’s tissues by way of your blood. Pretty neat, right? It gets less exciting if you’re dealing with a condition such as asthma or bronchitis, which inflame the airways and make breathing much more difficult. That inflammation causes the airways to narrow, swell, and produce extra mucus, restricting airflow and leading to miserable symptoms such as shortness of breath, coughing, and wheezing.

The link between asthma and bronchitis is simple: They are both inflammatory airway conditions and those with asthma are at increased risk of developing bronchitis. While not a clinical term, some physicians refer to asthmatic bronchitis as the condition that results when both asthma and bronchitis occur together.

Understanding Asthmatic Bronchitis

The symptoms of asthmatic bronchitis are similar to that of bronchitis and asthma, including chest tightness, wheezing, and difficulty breathing. Some people, especially those with a case of acute bronchitis, may also have a low-grade fever. The exact cause of asthmatic bronchitis is still being researched, but specific risk factors have been identified that can trigger a bout of bronchitis for those with asthma. They include:

  • Air pollution
  • Dust
  • Pet dander
  • Pollen
  • Mold
  • Respiratory infections
  • Smoke
  • Stress
  • Weather changes

Preventing asthmatic bronchitis is key, and you can do so by refraining from smoking, wearing a mask outside on days of low air quality, using a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter in your home, and regularly washing your bed linens in hot water.

Chronic Bronchitis & Asthma

Chronic bronchitis is one of the lung diseases comprising chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and there’s also a link between this condition and asthma. Called asthma-COPD overlap syndrome (ACOS), it is commonly described as persistent airflow limitation. While researchers are still learning about the cause and risk factors for ACOS, most agree that people with asthma who also smoke cigarettes are at greater risk of getting this condition. ACOS can lead to greater reduced lung function compared to those with only COPD as well as more frequent hospitalizations.

Lean on DispatchHealth for At-Home Bronchitis Treatment

Bronchitis symptoms are miserable to deal with, and that discomfort is only exacerbated if you have asthma. Leaving home to seek medical treatment may feel like an impossible scenario if you’re already struggling to breathe or can’t stop coughing. DispatchHealth is here for you. All you have to do is schedule a visit with us and our team will arrive within a few hours ready to help you get on the road to wellness. Whether we need to treat underlying asthma, provide COPD care, or simply help you with the worst of your bronchitis symptoms, we’ll take care of you.

Get in touch with DispatchHealth through our website, our easy-to-use mobile app, or the phone and a team will be on your doorstep shortly.

 

For life-threatening and time-sensitive injuries and illnesses, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room. DispatchHealth shouldn’t be used in a life-threatening emergency and doesn’t replace a primary care provider.

Sources

DispatchHealth relies only on authoritative sources, including medical associations, research institutions, and peer-reviewed medical studies. 

Sources referenced in this article: 

  1. https://www.webmd.com/asthma/asthmatic-bronchitis-symptoms-treatment  
  2. https://www.healthline.com/health/asthma/asthma-bronchitis
  3. https://www.healthgrades.com/right-care/asthma/asthmatic-bronchitis
  4. https://www.lung.org/blog/when-asthma-and-copd-overlap