Difference Between Bronchitis and Acute Bronchitis

Main Difference

The main difference between Bronchitis and Acute Bronchitis is that Bronchitis refers to the infection of the mucous membrane in the respiratory tubes. Acute bronchitis is a short-term swelling of the bronchi (large and medium-sized airways) of the lungs also known as a chest cold.

Bronchitis vs. Acute Bronchitis

Bronchitis and acute bronchitis is the infection of the lungs. Bronchitis is the swelling of the bronchial tube where the air passage between the mouth, nose and the lungs whereas acute bronchitis is short-term inflammation of the bronchi of the lungs frequently follow a cold or viral infection. Bronchitis and acute bronchitis causes irritation and swelling in the trachea and upper bronchial tubes. Bronchitis is divide into types as acute and chronic. Bronchitis is dangerous and requires hospitalization while acute bronchitis affects children but not severe than a common cold. Individuals with bronchitis cannot breathe air and oxygen into their lungs easily but acute bronchitis is not severe and the patient can breathe easily. Bronchitis may take a longer time to heel fully even several months and worse during the winter months whereas acute bronchitis infection may last from a few to several weeks. Bacteria, virus and other particles that irritate the lung such as air pollution, vapors, tobacco smoke, fumes, and dust causes bronchitis and acute bronchitis. Bronchitis and acute bronchitis are diagnosed by Lung function test, chest x-ray, blood test and by sputum sample. Bronchitis and acute bronchitis patients are usually instructed to rest, drink fluids, use pain killer, breathe warm and moist air, to reduce risk and symptoms. Bronchitis can affect or disturb people of all ages, but acute bronchitis can affect children and adults.

Comparison chart

BronchitisAcute Bronchitis
A respiratory illness that causes swelling of the tracheal tubes.Short-term inflammation of the bronchi of the lungs
Symptoms
Cough, low fever, chills, headache, sore throat, wheezingShortness of breath, cold, flu, fever, fatigue
Causes
Bacteria, virus, dust, dirt and air pollutionSmoke, fumes, cold and viral infection
Diagnosis
Lung function test, blood testChest x-ray, sputum test
Treatment
Cough medicine, oxygen therapy, using a humidifier, face maskAntibiotics, stop smoking, breathing exercise, anti-inflammatory medicine
Prevention
Avoid smoking, avoid lung irritant particle, yearly vaccine, pneumonia vaccineWash hand repeatedly, avoid polluted areas

What is Bronchitis?

Bronchitis is an infection or irritation in the air passage in the tracheal tubes (bronchi), between the mouth, nose and the lungs. Bronchitis refers to a condition where the lining of the tracheal tubes becomes swollen. Individuals with bronchitis cannot breathe air and oxygen into their lungs easily. The bronchi are the main airways in the lungs, which branch off on the trachea. They lead to smaller airways, known as bronchioles inside your lungs. The walls of the bronchi produce secretion to trap dirt and other particles, otherwise, irritate and known as Bronchitis. Causes of bronchitis are bacteria, virus, smoking and other particles that irritate the lung. Lung function testing, chest X-ray and blood testing are used to diagnose bronchitis. Symptoms are cough, fever, chills, sore throat, breathlessness, chest tightening, body pains, headaches, sinuses, and blocked nose. Pneumonia is the most common symptoms of bronchitis, causes the air sacs to fill with fluid within the lungs. 5% of bronchitis cases lead to pneumonia. Pneumonia develops in older, adults, smokers, and anyone with a reduced immune system and people with diseases in other organs. Treatment of bronchitis is medication, therapies, antibiotics, use of a humidifier and use of a face mask. Several other things reduce the risk of disease as stop smoking and avoid lung irritants such as pollution, dust, fumes.

What is Acute Bronchitis?

Acute bronchitis refers to a shorter infection that normally follows a cold or viral infection, such as the flu. It consists of a cough with secretion, pain, fever, chest anxiety and, sometimes, shortness of breath. Acute bronchitis frequently lasts for a few days or weeks. Acute bronchitis is caused by a viral infection, contact with dirty materials that irritate the lungs, such as air pollution, tobacco smoke, fumes, bacterial infection, and dust. Bronchitis causes colds and flu. Usually, a stethoscope, chest X-ray, blood test, pulmonary lung function test, are used to diagnose acute bronchitis. Symptoms of Acute bronchitis are Cough, (sputum), Fatigue, Slight fever, Shortness of breath, chills, and Chest discomfort. Acute bronchitis usually does not cause any permanent breathing problems. Complications with acute bronchitis occur in approximately 10% of patients. Frequent occurrences of acute bronchitis may develop into chronic bronchitis. Sensitive lung airway disease can occur as a result of acute bronchitis. Acute bronchitis people are usually instructed to rest, breathe warm and moist air, drink fluid, pain killers to reduce risk and symptoms. Treatment of acute bronchitis is cough medicine, anti-inflammatory medicines, steroids, oxygen therapy, and antibiotics. Acute bronchitis also cures by some remedies as stopping smoking, using a humidifier, breathing exercises. Acute bronchitis affects young children below the age of five. It is more common in winter and frequently develops cold, sore throat or flu. Prevention to cure acute bronchitis is to avoid dust, smoke, vapors, fumes, and air pollution.

Key Differences

  1. Bronchitis refers to the infection of the mucous membrane in the respiratory tubes while acute bronchitis is a short-term swelling of the bronchi of the lungs.
  2. Bronchitis shows cough, low fever, and chills, headache, sore throat, and wheezing symptoms whereas acute bronchitis shows Cough, cold, flu, shortness of breath, fever, and fatigue symptoms.
  3. Bronchitis is caused by Bacteria, virus, dust, dirt and air pollution; on the other hand, acute bronchitis is caused by Bacteria, smoke, fumes, air pollution, cold and viral infection.
  4. Bronchitis is diagnosed by Lung function test, chest x-ray, blood test on the contrary acute bronchitis is diagnose by Chest x-ray, blood test, and sputum sample.
  5. Bronchitis is treated with Cough medicine, oxygen therapy, antibiotics, using the humidifier, face mask while acute bronchitis treated with Antibiotics, stop smoking, breathing exercise, and anti-inflammatory medicine.
  6. Bronchitis patient needs to avoid smoking, avoid lung irritant, yearly vaccine, pneumonia vaccine on the flip side acute bronchitis patient often wash hand repeatedly to remove viral and bacterial germs, yearly vaccine, avoid polluted areas, and stop smoking.

Conclusion

Above this discussion, it concludes that Bronchitis and acute bronchitis are the infections of lungs. Bronchitis is an infection in the air passage in the respiratory tubes, while acute bronchitis is short-term swelling of the bronchi of the lungs also known as a chest cold.

Janet White

Janet White is a writer and blogger for Difference Wiki since 2015. She has a master's degree in science and medical journalism from Boston University. Apart from work, she enjoys exercising, reading, and spending time with her friends and family. Connect with her on Twitter @Janet__White

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