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Chronic Bronchitis Treatments & Procedures

State-of-the-Art Current Treatments

Temple offers the following treatments for chronic bronchitis patients:

  • Anti-inflammatory agents
    •  “Anti-inflammatories” are medications used to reduce swelling in your airways. If your chronic bronchitis is causing inflammation in your lungs, these kinds of drugs can make it easier to breathe. Usually, the anti-inflammatories used for lung problems are steroids. 
    • Inhaled steroids deliver the drug directly to the lungs, which lets you take a lower dose of the drug while still getting a benefit. Steroids can also be taken in pill form. When steroids are taken as pills, though, the dose must be higher than the dose in inhaled steroids
    • Some patients have side effects from inhaled steroids, including bruising, oral infections, and hoarseness. Taking steroids as pills can have more serious side effects because of the larger dose you need. These side effects can include bruising, cataracts, weight gain, high blood sugar levels, osteoporosis (weakening of the bones), and swelling in the ankles or feet
  • High frequency chest wall oscillation (HFCWO)
    • This treatment is often used for “bronchiectasis” (a permanent enlargement of parts of the airways of the lungs), which can have some similar symptoms as chronic bronchitis
    • It’s mainly focused on relieving symptoms, reducing flare-ups, decreasing breathlessness, and improving the quality of life overall 
    • High frequency chest wall oscillation uses a therapeutic device to send vibrations to the chest that can help patients clear mucus from the lungs
  • Smoking cessation 
    • If you smoke, your doctor will recommend programs and products that can help you quit. You’ll probably find that joining a support group with other people who are quitting smoking can be a big help too
    • Take care to avoid secondhand smoke. In addition, avoid places with other lung irritants like dust, fumes, or toxic substances as much as possible
  • Tailored eating plans
    • Chronic bronchitis symptoms may make it hard to eat enough. If that happens, your doctor may suggest an eating plan that includes some or all of the following:
      • Smaller, more frequent meals
      • Eating after resting 
      • Vitamins or other nutritional supplements
  • Physical activity recommendations
    • Exercise can help strengthen the muscles you use in breathing. It can improve your overall wellness too. Your doctor can help you decide what kinds of activity are best
  • Pulmonary rehabilitation
    • Pulmonary rehab uses many methods to improve the well-being of patients with chronic breathing problems. It may include an exercise program, training in managing Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), nutritional advice, and psychological counseling

At Temple, we are always researching new therapies to benefit our patients in the future. We’re fortunate to work with many fine scientists and doctors who make these discoveries possible.