Treatment of acute bronchitis

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There is such an opinion that bronchitis is a mild illness and is treated without special problems. But those who seriously believe in this rather deceptive testimony pose themselves at great danger. There are many unresolved issues related to terminology, etiology and pathogenesis of this disease. All this creates difficulties in interpreting clinical data, and in choosing the tactics of treatment for acute bronchitis. All this sounds quite difficult, so in order to quickly and without unpredictable consequences overcome this ailment, you need to trust experienced medical professionals, they know what to do.

Often, the etiological factor of acute bronchitis is different viruses, less often bacteria.

It is quite logical that acute bronchitis treatment of adults and kids is two completely different things. After all, bodies of representatives of these age categories are slightly different. Treatment of acute bronchitis in children requires a more lenient attitude and takes into account several important factors. First of all it is necessary to find answer for the following questions:

  • Should antibiotics be used or not?
  • Is it possible in this case to use mucolytics or a child can do without them?
Antibiotics for treatment of acute bronchitis

In principle, given that in most cases the causes of acute bronchitis are viruses — use of antibiotics makes no sense. This issue is widely discussed in the medical circles.

A number of studies conducted in adult patients indicate that the use of antibiotic therapy does not significantly affect the results of bronchitis. This calls into question the need for their application.

On the other hand, nobody can give a 100% guarantee that in this case the cause is a virus, not a viral-bacterial, or a bacterial infection.

According to the recommendations of many experienced pediatricians, the reasons for the appointment of antibiotics in acute bronchitis may be:

  • Age of a young patient up to 6 months of life
  • Difficult course of bronchitis (neurotoxicosis, etc.)
  • Injury received during childbirth, premature birth
  • Hypothyroidism
  • The presence of active chronic foci of infections (tonsillitis, otitis, etc.)

A separate but very important point that speaks of the need to use antibiotics is suspected stratification of bacterial infection. This is evidenced by:

  • Fever with body temperature above 39°C
  • Apathy, refusal of food
  • Expressed symptoms of intoxication
  • The presence of strangulation
  • Asymmetry of wheezing
  • Leukocytosis, increased rate of erythrocyte sedimentation

Of course, some of the symptoms described above cannot be determined without the help of medical equipment. Therefore, once again, we emphasize that the choice of how to treat acute bronchitis can be done only by medics. By the way, if you or your child were already ill with this illness, suppose last year and you have successfully cured with a certain antibiotic, this doesn’t mean that this time the same product is good for you.

Mucolytics for the treatment of acute bronchitis

In simple terms, these are products that thinning sputum. This special category of medications is usually prescribed internally or using a nebulizer or an aerosol inhaler.

It is believed that toddlers under the age of 2 years are not allowed to be treated with mucolytics. The risk of adverse effects exceeds the potential benefits. They were banned in France (April 2010) and in Italy (at the end of 2010). Was proved the emergence of severe complications in the respiratory tract of very young kids due to the use of these products (increasing the amount of sputum, the child does not have time to cough, as a result of this the obstruction of the respiratory tract develops). Evidence of the effectiveness of these medicines is not enough. Drinking warm drinks, nasal rinsing, humidifying of the air in the room where a sick child lives allows you to get the same effects without any risks.

To treat acute bronchitis, medics also apply:

  • Bronchodilators with clinical signs of bronchial obstruction in the form of inhalations (using a nebulizer), orally, less often rectally
  • Medical gymnastics, vibration massage, postural drainage
  • In hospitals, physiotherapy procedures: ultrahigh-frequency therapy, microwave therapy, various electrophoresis variants
  • First-generation antihistamines and cough suppressants for acute bronchitis are usually not applied in this case
  • Antiviral medications are effective, in the first 2-3 days from the onset of the disease

In conclusion, we would like to say that proper treatment of acute bronchitis in a particular individual (especially if we talk about kids and infants) should not be stereotyped, must be taken into account individual characteristics of each patient.

It is necessary to apply antibiotic therapy rationally, with caution concern the use of mucolytics, but not refuse their use completely. In a word, you, together with your attending physician need to find the "golden mean". It is important to use chest physiotherapy to improve drainage of mucus. For this purpose massage of a chest, stimulation of a cough and physiotherapy is used.

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