Obstructive bronchitis in children

Obstructive bronchitis is a disease of the upper respiratory tract, in which the mucous membranes of the trachea and bronchial tree are most actively affected.

It can manifest itself in acute form, acquire the characteristic features of chronic obstructive bronchitis and turn into bronchial asthma. Basically, bacterial and viral infections provoke the development of the disease.

The bronchi are an extensive network of tubes, with different diameters that allow air to pass through. He enters, passing through the larynx, bronchi and into the lungs. When an infection gets into the bronchi, and they become inflamed, the air circulation is disturbed and the air moves to the lungs more difficult. Obstructive bronchitis is essentially acute bronchitis, which proceeds with bronchial obstruction syndrome.

In order to prevent obstructive bronchitis in children, it does not acquire an acute or chronic form, it is necessary to know about its causes, methods of treatment (Dr. Komarovsky’s advices will help with this) and features of prevention.

What causes the development of the disease?

Let's first consider the word "obstructive". This name comes from the word obstruction, which means squeezing, constriction or spasm. The concept of "bronchitis" is derived from the word bronchi, which means the name of the lung in the human body.

To sum up: obstructive bronchitis is a narrowing of the bronchi or a spasm, as a result of which the accumulated mucus cannot go out and thus makes breathing difficult.

The causes of obstructive bronchitis in children include;

  • allergic inflammation of the bronchi - due to the allergic reaction of the child (dust, pollen, animal hair, etc.);
  • viral infections;
  • hypothermia or overheating;
  • passive smoking - in addition to the fact that inhalation of tobacco smoke as a whole leads to a decrease in immunity, smoke also provokes excessive secretion of mucus, which can become bronchial obstruction;
  • polluted environmental conditions;
  • frequent crying, during which the natural functions of breathing are disturbed;
  • birth injuries and health in the first 2 years of a child's life;
  • high humidity leads to the formation of fungus indoors, which provokes bronchial obstruction;

It is necessary to take measures immediately after the diagnosis. How to treat obstructive bronchitis in children will depend on the severity of symptoms, as well as the age of the child and his health.

Signs of

The first signs of bronchitis are a runny nose and a dry cough, worse at night. A sick child feels weakness, pain behind the sternum, usually they are very restless, capricious, there is increased nervous irritability.

Additional features:

  1. There are signs of difficulty expiratory breathing, its frequency and duration of exhalation increases, it is noisy and is accompanied by a whistle, which is heard from a distance.
  2. Sometimes the chest of the child visually increases in size.
  3. Pallor of the skin appears.
  4. Cough at first unproductive and infrequent.
  5. Body temperature is low or normal.
  6. In the later stages of the disease there are moist rales.
  7. X-ray shows signs of pulmonary distention.

In older children, acute obstructive bronchitis is sometimes accompanied by sore throat or cervical lymphadenitis, it has a protracted course.

Symptoms of obstructive bronchitis in children

Most often, the first episode of obstructive bronchitis develops in a child in the 2-3rd year of life. In the initial period, the clinical picture is determined by the symptoms of ARVI - increased body temperature, sore throat, runny nose, general malaise. Young children often develop dyspeptic symptoms.

Bronchial obstruction can join already in the first days of the disease or in 2-3 days. At the same time, there is an increase in the respiration rate (up to 50-60 per minute) and the expiration duration, which becomes noisy, whistling, audible from a distance.

In addition to tachypnea, expiratory or mixed dyspnea in children with obstructive bronchitis, activation of the auxiliary muscles in the act of breathing, an increase in the anteroposterior size of the chest, its contraction in breathing, and swelling of the wings of the nose are noted.

Cough in children with obstructive bronchitis is unproductive, with scanty sputum, sometimes painful, paroxysmal, not giving relief. Even with a wet cough, sputum is difficult to move.

Pallor of the skin or perioral cyanosis is noted. Manifestations of obstructive bronchitis in children may be accompanied by cervical lymphadenitis. Bronchus obstruction lasts 3-7 days, disappears gradually as the inflammatory changes in the bronchi subside.


First of all, prevention of obstructive bronchitis in children is to strengthen the immune system: maintaining breastfeeding for at least one year, more walks in the fresh air, a varied and healthy diet, taking vitamins, hardening.

In addition, it is very important to timely and correctly treat colds, preventing the development of complications. Self-treatment is the first enemy of health. Although the consequences may not be immediately apparent. That misleads parents about the harm of their actions.

Treatment of obstructive bronchitis in children: Komarovsky

In detail about the symptoms, as well as how to treat obstructive bronchitis in children will tell a well-known specialist - Dr. Komarovsky. Recommended for viewing to all parents.

Stages of treatment

Acute obstructive bronchitis in children is a serious pathology that does not go away for a long time without treatment or is complicated by pneumonia, the development of respiratory failure and metabolic disorders in body tissues.

There are several situations when the presence of obstructive bronchitis in children requires urgent treatment in the hospital:

  1. The presence of obstruction in infants.
  2. If, against the background of the disease, symptoms such as very high fever, general drowsiness and lethargy, nausea and loss of appetite develop.
  3. The appearance of signs of insufficiency in breathing, such as acrocyanosis and severe shortness of breath.

It is impossible to refuse hospitalization and treatment of obstructive bronchitis in a child with the above symptoms in a hospital setting, since under the guise of ordinary bronchitis can hide dangerous acute pneumonia.

The goal of therapy for this disease is to eliminate the causes that caused it, relieve bronchial obstruction, improve the functioning of the respiratory organs, and symptomatic treatment depending on the manifestations. First of all, measures are taken to clear the bronchi from mucus, and bronchodilator and anti-inflammatory measures are prescribed.


Antiviral drugs are indicated in the early days of the disease. For small children, use candles (Genferon), nasal drops (Grippferon), syrups (Orvirem), from the age of 3, tablets can be used (Arbidol, Kagocel, etc.).

Antibacterial therapy is not a mandatory component of the treatment of obstructive bronchitis, and the appointment and choice of the drug should be made only by a doctor. Indications for the connection of antibiotics are:

  1. High fever longer than 3 days;
  2. Severe intoxication;
  3. Inflammatory changes in blood tests;
  4. Purulent (yellow, yellow-green) sputum - a sign of bacterial lesions of the bronchi;
  5. Pediatricians listen to moist rales or other signs of possible pneumonia.


In order to reduce swelling and facilitate the passage of sputum, inhalation is used with the help of an inhaler-nebulizer with the use of special solutions, thus creating a cold vapor of the smallest particles that are delivered to the lungs. This procedure is easy to use.

Dry, painful cough and difficult to discharge sputum are treated with the help of mucolytic drugs, such drugs, stimulate sputum discharge in a child and have an anti-inflammatory effect. For children, use a solution or syrup, such drugs are administered through the mouth. Discard mucolytic drugs should be detected when a child has a productive cough with sputum separation.

Cough drops

Effective treatment is based on the provision of sputum discharge. For such purposes are prescribed mucoregulatory agents. They are aimed at diluting the viscous sputum and its early discharge. Medications are popular:

  1. Ambroxol;
  2. "Ambrobene";
  3. "Lasolvan";
  4. "Bronkhobos";
  5. "Mucosol";
  6. "Flyuditek".

Very effective drug "Ambroxol". Often it is prescribed in the form of inhalation through a nebulizer. The course of treatment with the above remedies lasts 7-10 days.

After such treatment, the cough passes from paroxysmal, painful to wet. The phlegm is less viscous, but does not move well. At this stage, the mucoregulators are replaced with expectorant drugs.

Preference is given to herbal medicines:

  1. "Broncho San";
  2. "Bronhikum";
  3. Gedelix;
  4. Herbion;
  5. "Bronchipret";
  6. "Tussin";
  7. "Dr. Mom";
  8. Proscan;
  9. "Dr. Theiss".

Anti-cough codeine-containing drugs are not shown and can be recommended (only by a doctor) for an obsessive paroxysmal dry cough with mandatory monitoring of the child’s condition and correction of treatment.

Massage and breathing exercises

Very useful massage for sputum discharge. The baby needs to gently tap the edge of his hand on the back. Older guys are told to take a breath and a slow, smooth exhalation, on which they carry out tapping.

Recommended for children special breathing exercises. Such exercises stimulates the body to get rid of sputum. Babies can be recommended to inflate a ball or blow out a candle.

Watch the video: "Common Pediatric Respiratory Problems" by Monica Kleinman, MD for OPENPediatrics (December 2019).


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