Bronchiectasis

"Although not very common, bronchiectasis causes hemoptysis or bleeding that may require blockage of the bleeding arteries by a catheter or surgical resection of the affected area".

DR. ARANTZA CAMPO EZQUIBELA
PERSON IN CHARGE. PNEUMOLOGY DEPARTMENT

Bronchiectasis are dilations of the bronchi that cause repeated bronchial infections and sometimes other symptoms such as bronchial hyperreactivity or hemoptysis.

The evaluation of bronchiectasis includes

  • Diagnostic study (to confirm their presence and investigate their causes).
  • Study of the type of infections by taking microbiological samples.
  • Education in respiratory physiotherapy.
  • Evaluation of surgical treatment (when appropriate).
  • Directed treatment according to the findings of the tests.
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What are the symptoms of bronchiectasis?

Bronchiectasis can appear at any time of life, although normally they start from childhood, what happens is that they are asymptomatic.

The evolution is slow and gradual, usually beginning with a respiratory infection that becomes chronic and does not improve over time. The patients present a chronic cough, which does not yield, with abundant production of expectoration.

The type and amount of sputum is related to the extent and severity of the disease.

The most common symptoms are:

  • Repeated bronchial infections.
  • Cough.
  • Beeps.
  • Breathing difficulty.
  • Bleeding from the airways (hemoptysis).

Do you have any of these symptoms?

You may have bronchiectasis

What are the causes?

Bronchiectasis can be caused by a previous disease in the lung (pneumonia, tuberculosis, radiotherapy), associated with chronic respiratory diseases (COPD, asthma, bronchial stenosis) or even general diseases such as cystic fibrosis, immunodeficiency or inflammatory bowel disease.

How are bronchiectasis diagnosed?

The diagnosis of bronchiectasis can sometimes be made by means of a chest X-ray, but it usually requires the performance of a thoracic CT (scan).

The investigation of the cause is important in some cases, especially when they are disseminated.

How are bronchiectasis treated?

This is a chronic disease that requires regular check-ups with a pulmonologist

The treatment of bronchiectasis depends on its location and the symptoms it causes. When they do not cause symptoms, they do not require any treatment.

If they are limited to a segment or lobe of the lung, surgical treatment (resection of the affected area) can resolve the symptoms completely.

If they are diffuse, it is important to investigate whether there is a possible cause and treat infections appropriately with antibiotics that target the type of germs that cause them.

In some cases, infections are chronic and require prolonged or intermittent treatment with inhaled or systemic (oral or intravenous) antibiotics.

In these cases, respiratory physiotherapy for drainage of secretions is key to improving symptoms and decreasing infections.

Where do we treat it?

IN NAVARRE AND MADRID

The Department of Pneumology
of the Clínica Universidad de Navarra

Specializing in smoking and tobacco-related diseases, the Department has over 15 years of experience in smoking cessation and lung cancer early detection programs.

The department's specialists have received training at leading centers around the world, including centers in the United States, and have extensive experience in the diagnosis and treatment of all respiratory diseases, both common and rare.

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