d. Diagnosis. Isolation of the virus from throat washing or sputum allows a
diagnosis of influenza.
e. Treatment. Bed rest is of great importance in order to prevent complications.
Analgesics can be taken for muscle pain and headache. The patient should drink plenty
of fluids. Antibiotics may be given for secondary bacterial infections.
f. Prevention. Flu vaccine is available for vaccination of the general
Section III. LOWER RESPIRATORY DISEASES
a. Definition/Characteristics. Acute bronchitis is inflammation of the bronchial
mucous membrane of the bronchial tree. Infection, dust, chemical agents, and/or
allergies can cause bronchitis. When the bronchi are infected, the mucous membranes
(linings) of the bronchi secrete mucus and pus cells (white blood cells that can attack
infectious agents). The large outpouring of mucus partially obstructs the airways.
Additionally, the irritated membranes may swell, further obstructing the airways.
Soreness and constriction behind the sternum-worse when patient
Cough, at first dry and painful; later, green or yellowish sputum with pus
c. Treatment. Treatment should include bed rest and increased fluid intake.
Medication to reduce the fever and pain can be taken. Antibiotics can be used, if
indicated. Steam inhalation can open air passages.