Bronchitis is the inflammation or irritation of the lungs air ways or bronchi. It is also considered one of the most common lung infections in the world. Its symptoms mainly consist of coughing, accompanied by a yellowish grey mucus or phlegm. Most infections are classified as acute bronchitis and usually clear up without medical treatment. The infection usually comes after the flu or a common cold and treatable with plenty of rest and fluids. Although it can affect any age group, children are the most commonly affected by acute bronchitis.
There is no cure for chronic bronchitis but it can be managed and treated with proper medical attention and maintenance. Since the symptoms are similar to other lung infections, a doctor will usually take an x-ray to rule out pneumonia. The most common cause is smoking and the irritation caused over time.
The most common complication from a bronchitis infection is pneumonia, which causes the air sacs in the lungs to fill with fluid. People with a compromised immune systems, existing health condition, smokers, and the elderly have an increased risk of developing pneumonia as a result of a bronchial infection.