Inflammation - bronchi; Acute bronchitis
The symptoms of either type of bronchitis may include:
- Chest discomfort
- Cough that produces mucus; if it's yellow-green, you are more likely to have a bacterial infection
Fever-- usually low
Shortness of breathworsened by exertion or mild activity
Even after acute bronchitis has cleared, you may have a dry, nagging cough that lingers for several weeks.
Additional symptoms of chronic bronchitis include:
- Ankle, feet, and leg swelling
Blue-colored lipsfrom low levels of oxygen
- Frequent respiratory infections (such as colds or the flu)
Signs and tests
The health care provider will listen to your lungs with a stethoscope. Abnormal sounds in the lungs called rales or other abnormal
Tests may include:
Lung function testsprovide information that is useful for diagnosis and your outlook.
- Pulse oximetry helps determine the amount of oxygen in your blood. This quick and painless test uses a device that is placed onto the end of your finger.
Arterial blood gasis a more exact measurement of oxygen and carbon dioxide levels, but it requires a needle stick and is more painful.
Sputum samplesmay be taken to check for signs of inflammation or bacterial infection.