For most of cases, the initial treatment is simple to prescribe but often ignored by the patient – stop smoking cigarettes and avoid second-hand tobacco smoke. Half of patients with chronic bronchitis who smoke will no longer cough after 1 month of smoking cessation.
Other treatments may include:
Bronchodilator Medications — It helps to relieve symptoms by relaxing and opening the air passages in the lungs.
Steroids — It helps relieve symptoms of chronic bronchitis. Over time, however, it can cause side effects, such as weakened bones, high blood pressure, diabetes and cataracts. It is important to discuss these side effects with your doctor before using steroids.
Antibiotics — It may be used to help fight respiratory infections common in people with chronic bronchitis.
Vaccines — Patients with chronic bronchitis should receive a flu shot annually and pneumonia shot every five to seven years to prevent infections.
Oxygen Therapy — As a patient's disease progresses, they may find it increasingly difficult to breathe on their own and may require supplemental oxygen.
Surgery — Lung volume reduction surgery may be recommended for some patients with chronic bronchitis.
Pulmonary Rehabilitation — It includes education, nutrition counseling, learning special breathing techniques, help with quitting smoking and starting an exercise regimen.
Consulting with a skilled doctor can better help you cope with chronic bronchitis.
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