Clearing the air: Asthma vs Bronchitis, what you need to know

Similar symptoms, but different diseases.

18 Feb 2024 02:00pm
Photo for illustrative purposes only.
Photo for illustrative purposes only.

SHAH ALAM - The uncertain weather conditions now make many people complain of cough, regardless of age.

Some of us experience prolonged symptoms that are difficult to recover from even after taking medication.

Is it a sign that someone has asthma or bronchitis?

According to Healthline, asthma and bronchitis have similar symptoms but have different causes.

The two diseases will cause the respiratory tract to become inflamed, swollen and make it difficult for air to move into the lungs.

As a result, there is a lack of oxygen that goes out to the organs and tissues.

The situation will make a person experience symptom such as shortness of breath, coughing and chest tightness.

Meanwhile, MetTweetMY through a post on X said, bronchitis is an inflammation of the bronchial tubes which are the breathing tubes in the lungs.

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It is usually caused by a viral or bacterial infection.

Meanwhile, asthma is a chronic condition that causes inflammation and narrowing of the airways.

"The signs of bronchitis can usually be seen after a common cold but symptoms such as coughing will continue.

"Patients will also complain of chest discomfort, phlegm production and fever and cough at night," he said.

Among the risk factors that can cause bronchitis are cigarette smoke, a weak immune system and specific viral infections.

Asthma is triggered by allergens, exercise or infection.

The patient will experience wheezing with difficulty breathing.

Asthma usually has a family history, allergies and atopic diseases such as eczema and sinusitis.

"This means that asthma is a chronic disease and has already occurred before the latest bacterial infection," he explained.

In the meantime, MetTweetMY also explained about the treatment of both diseases is also similar.

It said that nebulisation treatment can help clear the lungs so that patients can breathe more easily.

"Medication with pneumonia drugs and inhalers can also be given to help control symptoms.

"If necessary, antibiotics or antivirals will be given after careful examination by medical officers," the statement said.

Although the symptoms are quite similar, bronchitis usually clears up in a few days or weeks which is unlike asthma, a chronic condition and can only be managed with long-term control using inhalers or medications.

"Both of these conditions affect the respiratory system but have different causes and motives for treatment.

"If you experience persistent symptoms, please check with a health professional for proper diagnosis and treatment," the statement said.

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