Bronchiectasis - a review
Icelandic Medical Journal
Bronchiectasis is a disease that is characterized by permanent bronchial dilation. This can be localized or diffuse in the lungs. The disease can occur at any age and causes cough, sputum production and repeated infections. It is more common in women and incidence increases with age. Bronchiectasis is characterized by repeated episodes of worsening symptoms that are usually caused by respiratory infections. The cause of bronchiectasis can be unknown but it can be caused by respiratory diseases
... spiratory diseases and diseases outside the chest. Examples of such diseases are asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, rheumatoid arthritis in addition to immune deficiency. Disease profile is therefore different for each patient. Bronchiectasis is diagnosed with computerized tomography of the chest in addition to clinical symptoms. Workup to diagnose other diseases that could be causing it is therefore important. For that detailed history, physical examination and additional investigations are appropriate. Patients with bronchiectasis have decreased health related quality of life and increased mortality. Treatment focuses on treatment of underlying diseases, airway clearance and treatment of infections. Pulmonary rehabilititation is also important. Regular follow-up is important. This is a review on bronchiectasis that is intended for a spectrum of physicians, because bronchiectasis can be seen in primary care, hospitals and out of hospital.