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Bronchiectasis (pronounced brong-key-EK-tuh-sis) is a condition in which the airways become widened, and mucus accumulates and pools in them. This pooling of mucus leads to a cycle of inflammation, infection, and progressive airway destruction. Bronchiectasis can be caused by recurrent or lingering lung infections, or by immune and genetic disorders. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases estimates that bronchiectasis affects about 110,000 people in the United States.
Common symptoms of bronchiectasis include persistent coughing that produces blood or mucus, shortness of breath, wheezing, fatigue, and weight loss. Patients with bronchiectasis can also experience flare-ups in which respiratory symptoms become much worse.
If you have symptoms of bronchiectasis, the specialists at Norton Thoracic Institute (NTI) will work to identify the cause of your illness and to develop a treatment plan that reduces ongoing airway destruction. At NTI, you may undergo one or more of the following diagnostic procedures:
At NTI, patients with bronchiectasis are closely monitored and receive early intervention. Our goal is to break the cycle of mucus pooling, inflammation, infection, and airway destruction by giving you aggressive airway clearance and antimicrobial therapies. Medications for patients with bronchiectasis may include the following:
Sometimes, despite aggressive therapy, bronchiectasis can progress to respiratory failure that requires lung transplantation. The Norton Lung Transplant Center is the largest lung transplant center in the western United States. We pride ourselves on excellent clinical outcomes and continuity of care between pre-transplant and post-transplant care teams.
Although there is no cure for bronchiectasis, there is much you can do to manage your condition.
To learn more about our services, call 602.406.4000.