Difference between pneumonia and bronchitis
Pneumonia vs bronchitis:
Even though both bronchitis and pneumonia are caused by viral, bacterial, and fungal infections of the respiratory system, the location of the infected area with regards to each disease differ. However, they are serious diseases which in addition to the discomfort caused to the individual are considered as being fatal if left untreated for a long time.
What is pneumonia?
Pneumonia affects the lungs by way of a fungi, virus or a bacteria, affecting the the alveoli and the bronchioles which are located in proximity to the alveoli. It manifests itself by way of high fever, cough, often producing sputum that is green, yellow or rust colored and chills as well as prolonged symptoms of wheezing, rapid breathing and in certain cases, even chest pain. Viral pneumonia is easy to be mistaken with the common viral flu as in addition to the nausea and exhaustion, other symptoms may display general symptoms of the above mentioned disease. Pneumonia is typically treated with oral antibiotics or intravenous antibiotics in the intensive care unit in extreme cases and it is a disease that is most often to be resolved in about two weeks of time.
What is bronchitis?
Bronchitis is referred to as the inflammation of the main air passages referred to as the bronchial tubes and thus manifests itself by way of a cough with headache, fatigue, difficulty in breathing, chest pain, mucoid cough, and a slight fever. It may be caused by irritation originating from pollution and smoke, long term lung disease, bacteria or a viral infection and is common among people above 65 years of age whose immune systems have been significantly weakened. Bronchitis may exist in both acute or chronic forms of which the chronic version may last a life time and can be presented as one aspect of the chronic pulmonary airway disease. However, bronchitis is mostly treated with antibiotics, with plenty of rest prescribed as well as advise to stop smoking and is normally known to be resolved by the period of one week.
What is the difference between bronchitis and pneumonia?
Both conditions occur in the lower respiratory tract because of infective organism such as virus, bacteria or fungi as a result. They can also be provoked with other elements such as smoking, pollution, being exposed to coal dust, feather particles, soot, etc. However, while pneumonia is known to affect the lung area in the alveoli and the bronchioles which are located in proximity to the alveoli whereas bronchitis is known to affect the bronchial tubes which are the main air passageways of the human respiratory system. Furthermore, pneumonia is known to cause oedema, lung abscesses and pleural effusion in the alveoli while bronchitis too causes the oedema in addition to the scarring of the air passages.
Although certain symptoms of the diseases may be similar, pneumonia is characterized by high fever which may exceed 102 degrees, accompanied by chattering teeth whereas bronchitis may only cause the individual to have low fever. Bronchitis exists in acute and chronic forms whereas there exists no such forms in pneumonia. While the acute form of bronchitis may be cured within a number of days, recovering from pneumonia may take up to two weeks. However, chronic bronchitis may last for a life time. And yet,, bronchitis does not require hospitalization whereas pneumonia often does.
Treatment of the two diseases is also very different. While a patient affected with bronchitis will be administered mild antibiotics and be advised to rest while taking care to avoid pollutants, a patient affected with pneumonia will be prescribed with strong antiviral and antibiotic medicine and at times, even additional breathing apparatus will be administered depending on the severity of the situation.
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