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Chronic bronchitis is inflammation inside of the main airways (bronchi) that come off the windpipe (trachea) in the lungs. The swelling causes the airways to narrow and make more mucus than normal. This can make it hard to breathe and may cause coughing or noisy breathing (wheezing). Chronic bronchitis in children is a longer-term (chronic) condition. It is usually associated with other chronic respiratory conditions, such as asthma or cystic fibrosis.
Children who get frequent colds and other infections in the nose, throat, or airways may have long-term airway injury or inflammation. This makes them more prone to get longer-lasting lung infections like chronic bronchitis.
Your child's health care provider may diagnose this condition based on your child's signs and symptoms, especially if your child has had a cough that lasts for a long time or keeps coming back.
These symptoms may represent a serious problem that is an emergency. Do not wait to see if the symptoms will go away. Get medical help right away. Call your local emergency services (911 in the U.S.).
This information is not intended to replace advice given to you by your health care provider. Make sure you discuss any questions you have with your health care provider.
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