Bronchitis and Tonsillitis – Causes and diagnose

The condition called bronchitis is the inflammation of the bronchial tree; tonsillitis is the inflammation of to tonsils localized on the posterior side of the mouth. Both diseases are caused mainly by bacteria or viruses, but can also be unleashed by polluting factors or different substances causing irritation. The most common cause of tonsillitis is still the bacteria Streptococcus with its preferred localization in the mouth and throat.

In bronchitis, the occurred inflammation affects the cills on the bronchial mucosa and lowers their movements so they cannot evacuate mucus and foreign particles no more. Also the mucus secretion is stimulated and the phenomenon of coughing appears during bronchitis. Triggers of bronchial inflammation are especially inhaled dust or pollutants, smoking, but also viral determinants such as Rhinoviruses, Adenoviruses, Influenza and Epstein-Barr.

Tonsils have an immune and evacuating function but viral or bacterial infection hinders the drainage leading to inflammation and pain. Most important infectious factors in tonsillitis are Streptococcus group A and viruses like Herpes simplex I, Adenovirus, Enterovirus, Epstein-Barr and the flu causing viruses Influenza and Parainfluenza.

The primer symptoms of bronchial inflammation are coughing with mucus expectoration, chest pains, dispneea (difficult breathing) and all signs of regular colds. Tonsillitis is characterized by symptoms like a sore throat and disfagia (pain while swallowing), fever, pain, nausea, anorexia and chills.

Most difficult to diagnose is bronchitis as it can easily be mistaken with asthma. Proper tests for diagnose are chest X-ray, listening breathing with the stethoscope, pulmonary function tests and collecting sputum for bacterial cultures.

Tonsillitis is diagnosed only by checking the swollen tonsils with a spatula and collecting a pharyngeal probe to determine if the infection is bacterial or viral. Bacterial infection will require antibiotics but viruses won’ respond to such treatment.

If not treated bronchitis can become chronic and increase the risk of lung cancer, contribute to apparition of asthma or make the pulmonary tract more vulnerable to infections. Complications of untreated tonsillitis might be obstruction of mouth and upper airways and an abscess that could spread in the entire body. Especially untreated Streptococcus causes heart, kidney, skin and liver damages.

Treating bronchitis requires painkillers like Ibuprofen or Acetaminophen, assisted breathing in acute bronchitis and ant biotherapy with macrolides if Chlamydia or Mycoplasma are present.

Streptococcus in tonsillitis must be attacked parenteral Penicillin; in severe cases of more than six tonsillitis attacks per year surgery to remove the tonsils is indicated. Tonsillectomy is also necessary when the inflammation obstructs the throat.

The potential severe complications of long-term infection left untreated must imply more interest in healing the inflammation and treating the primer infection. Researches to find better and right cures are made all over the world.

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