Pronounced: Bronk-ee-oh-LIE-tusEn Español (Spanish Version)
Bronchiolitis is a viral disease of the lungs most common in young children. The virus causes swelling airways in the small airways of the lungs, called bronchioles, and a build up of mucus in the airways. This can make breathing more difficult and lead to coughing and wheezing.
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Bronchiolitis is caused by one of several different types of viruses. These viruses are easily spread from person to person like a common cold. It is passed most easily through droplets of moisture that are released into the air with coughs or sneezing. These droplets may be inhaled by others or land on common surfaces like counters and doorknobs. A healthy person can pick up the virus by inhaling it in the air or coming in contact with the virus on surfaces then touching their face.
Last reviewedJanuary 2015by Michael Woods, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.