BRONCHOSPASM
m ilk production after childbirth and to
treat
Parkinson’s disease
.
Side effects in -
clude nausea and vom iting; high doses
may cause drowsiness and confusion.
bronchial asthma
See
asthma
.
bronchiectasis
A lung disorder in w hich one or more
bronchi (air passages leading from the
trachea) are abnormally widened and
distorted, with damaged linings. Bron-
chiectasis commonly develops during
childhood and was once associated with
infections such as
measles
and
pertussis
(whooping cough). The condition may
also be a complication of
cystic fibrosis
.
Bronchiectasis
results
in
pockets
of
long-term infection within the airways
and the continuous production of large
volumes of green or yellow sputum
(phlegm). Extensive bronchiectasis may
cause shortness of breath.
Symptoms are usually controlled with
antibiotic drugs
and
postural drainage
,
a
technique that clears secretions from the
lungs. If the condition is confined to
one area of lung, surgical removal of the
damaged area may be recommended.
bronchiole
One of many small airways of the
lungs
.
Bronchioles branch from larger airways
(bronchi) and subdivide into progres-
sively smaller tubes before reaching the
alveoli (see
alveolus, pulmonary
),
where
gases are exchanged.
bronchiolitis
An acute viral infection of the lungs,
mainly affecting babies and young chil-
dren, in w hich the bronchioles
(the
airways
branching
off the
bronchi)
become inflamed. A common cause is
the respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).
Symptoms of bronchiolitis include
rapid breathing, a cough, and fever. No
treatment may be
necessary but,
in
severe cases, hospital admission is nec-
essary so that
oxygen therapy
can be
given. If treatment is prompt, recovery
is usually w ithin a few days.
Antibiotic
drugs
may be given to prevent a sec-
ondary bacterial infection.
bronchitis
A disorder in w hich the bronchi, the
large air passages to the
lungs,
are
inflamed. Bronchitis results in a cough
that may produce considerable quanti-
ties of sputum (phlegm) and may be
acute or chronic. Both types are more
common in smokers and in areas with
high atmospheric pollution. (See also
bronchitis, acute
;
bronchitis, chronic
.)
bronchitis, acute
A form of
bronchitis
,
usually due to a
viral infection, that develops suddenly
but often clears up within a few days.
Bacterial infection of the airways may
be a complication. Smokers, babies, the
elderly, and people with lung disease
are particularly susceptible. Symptoms
include wheezing, shortness of breath,
and a cough producing yellow or green
sputum. There may also be pain behind
the sternum (breastbone) and fever.
Symptoms may be relieved by drink-
ing plenty of fluids and inhaling steam
or using a humidifier. Most cases clear
up without further treatment, but acute
bronchitis may be serious in people
w ho already have lung damage.
bronchitis, chronic
Smoking-induced inflammation of the
airways associated with
emphysema
,
in
w hich the air sacs in the lungs are
destroyed. The combination of chronic
bronchitis and emphysema is known as
chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
(see
pulmonary disease, chronic obstruc-
tive
).
Symptoms include a productive
cough and progressive breathlessness.
bronchoconstrictor
A substance that causes narrowing of
the airways. Bronchoconstrictors, such
as
histamine
,
are released during an
allergic reaction (see
allergy
) and may
provoke an
asthma
attack. The effect can
be reversed by a
bronchodilatordrug
.
bronchodilator drugs
COMMON DRUGS
Sympathomimetics
•Bambuterol •Eformoterol
• Ephedrine •Epinephrine •Fenoterol
• Salbutamol •Salmeterol •Terbutaline
an tich o lin ergics
•Ipratropium bromide
• Oxitropium
xanthines
•Aminophylline •Theophylline
Drugs that widen the bronchioles (small
airways in the lungs) to improve air flow
and breathing. They are especially used
to treat
asthma
and chronic obstructive
pulmonary disease (see
pulmonary dis-
ease, chronic obstructive
),
in w hich the
lungs are inflamed and damaged.
TYPES
There are three main types of broncho-
dilator drug. Sympathomimetics (such
as
salbutamol
) are used prim arily for the
rapid relief of
breathing difficulty. Anti-
cholinergics
(such as ipratropium) and
xanthines
(such as
aminophylline
)
are
more frequently used for the long-term
prevention of attacks of breathing diffi-
culty. Bronchodilators can be given by
inhaler
,
in tablet form, or, in severe
cases, by
nebulizer
or injection.
SIDE EFFECTS
The main side effects of sympathomim-
etics
are
palpitations and trembling.
Anticholinergics may cause dry mouth,
blurred vision, and, rarely, difficulty in
passing
urine.
Xanthines
may
cause
headaches, nausea, and palpitations.
bronchography
An
X-ray
procedure used for examining
the bronchi, w hich are the two main air
passages of the lungs. Once used to
diagnose
bronchiectasis
(widening and
distortion of the bronchi), this method
has now been largely replaced by other
imaging techniques, especially
CT scan-
ning
,
and by
bronchoscopy
.
bronchopneumonia
The most common form of
pneumonia
.
In bronchopneumonia, inflammation is
spread throughout the lungs in small
patches around the airways; in lobar
pneumonia, it is confined to one lobe.
bronchoscopy
Examination of the bronchi, the main
airways of the lungs (see
bronchus
), by
means of an
endoscope
(viewing tube)
known as a bronchoscope. Broncho-
scopes may be rigid or flexible.
WHY IT IS DONE
Bronchoscopy is performed to inspect
the bronchi for abnormalities, such as
lung cancer
and
tuberculosis
;
to collect
samples of mucus; to obtain cells; and
to take
biopsy
samples from the airways
or lungs. A bronchoscope with special
attachments is used to carry out treat-
ments such as removing inhaled foreign
bodies, destroying abnormal growths,
and sealing off damaged blood vessels.
(See also
Bronchoscopy
box, overleaf.)
bronchospasm
Temporary narrowing of the bronchi
(the air passages to the lungs). Bron-
chospasm is caused by contraction of
the muscles in the walls of the bronchi,
by inflammation of the lining of the
bronchi, or by a combination of both.
Contraction may be triggered by the
release of substances during an allergic
B
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