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Bronchitis Guide

Alison Beaver

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ask: Any natural remedies or tips to help with bronchitis-caused wheezing?

By Nancy Drew Fan
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I hope someone can help me with a health issue I'm dealing with right now. I've never been a wheezy person and I don't have asthma, but I'm doing it now and it's driving me nuts.

I've been coughing for over 3 weeks and although it's finally getting better, it's been very gradual. I was diagnosed last weekend with bronchitis at Urgent Care and given an RX for Augmentin and an Albuterol inhaler. I had already been on Amoxicillin for about 5 days when I headed to Urgent Care with the wheezies.

The Augmentin and the Albuterol did nothing to help, so I saw a P.A. at my PCP's office a couple days later, and she gave me an RX for Albuterol to be used in a nebulizer, and asked that I give the Augmentin a couple more days to work.

A couple of days later, I saw a D.O. at the office who ordered a shot of steroids in my patoot and a shot of antibiotics as well, and said to discontinue the Augmentin. I went in for a chest X-ray last Tuesday to rule out pneumonia and have yet to hear back on that!

While the cough is gradually improving and the gunk is not yucky green anymore, I don't like this wheezing stuff and I'm frankly tired of taking prescription stuff that's not working. The steroid shot didn't work and the Albuterol in the nebulizer or the inhaler just makes me jittery but I still wheeze.

my oxygen levels have been from 93-100% at my visits so I think I'm getting enough air-it's more annoying than anything.

Over the weekend, the P.A. phoned in an RX for a week's worth of oral steroids and another antibiotic, but again, I'm really getting tired of taking a bunch of drugs and am looking for any tips and suggestions at this point. Since the green gunk is turning clear I'd like to avoid the antibiotic and I'm honestly not sure about the steroids. Does anyone have any ideas on why this wheezing is hanging around so long, and what I can do short of sitting in a hot shower 24/7 to get it to clear out? Thank you so much!

Add a Comment12 Comments

EmpowHER Guest

hey im not a doctor but i suffer ashma. and the way you discribed it sounds like a sign of ashma.. ask your self what cuase weezing? the main reason is a blockage in ur airwaves.... steroids are kinda good in a way that it forces your tubes to open quickly.. but im thinking that its something your doing thats cuzing it.... hot showers all the time can cuz it... smoking or having pets can cuz it... to much pollen in the air. haveing an A.C. helps alot becuase of its filters. drink tee with honey helps stop weezing... i really hope you get better.. just be greatfull that you can breath... trust me i rather weeze than to catch an attack fighting for air.... God bless you. here my email let me know how it works out. turbo718@gmail.com

July 2, 2012 - 3:10am
EmpowHER Guest

I, too, have been suffering with wheezing/bronchitis after a cold last month. Since I'm still wheezing when I exhale (sounds like a symphony with three simultaneous notes), the internist ordered an x-ray. The x-ray noted basilar interstitial fibrosis, but they want to review a previous x-ray from 15 years ago first. A non-smoker, I've worked 20 years inhaling second-hand smoke, albeit mostly with an air purifier nearby. Also, last year I had difficulty after inhaling paint fumes (vols) while painting our home interior. And three of my Rx's for other conditions list side effects of respiratory/allergy problems. I do have allergy problems this time of year. I certainly hope I get the right answer to all this. Does anyone have any comments/suggestions from their own experience in this regard?

October 8, 2010 - 3:11pm
Pat Elliott HERWriter Guide (reply to Anonymous)

Anon - It would be in your best interests to seek a referral to a pulmunologist, a physician who specializes in treating diseases and disorders of the lungs and respiratory system. While many internists and family physicians do treat lung disorders they don't have the specialized expertise of a pulmonologist.

There are about 100 different types of interstitial lung disease, but the following information from the Cleveland Clinic will help you better understand it: http://www.clevelandclinicmeded.com/medicalpubs/diseasemanagement/pulmon...

Hope this helps, and please stay in touch.

October 8, 2010 - 5:32pm
EmpowHER Guest

thank you alysiak..i will let you know going to make it now.

December 24, 2008 - 8:56am

Hi, Arlene:

Interesting...I've not heard of the onion and honey remedy before. Please let us know if it works for you.

Meanwhile, I hope you get over that cough, soon.

December 23, 2008 - 8:30pm
EmpowHER Guest

Good evening all.i too am relieved after coming across this site. my Dr. also diagnosed me with bronchitis about 3 weeks ago,, he gave me an inhaler{{flovent hfa} which i took for most of that time .. my symptoms were: coughing ,breathlessness & also hurt to cough ... altho no congestion or mucus... anyway. i stopped the inhaler which was a big mistake! my bronchitis came back couple days ago & i went back to the Dr. he told me to go back on the inhaler .. take cough med{ robitussin} & come back in 1 mo...well so far my chest doesnt hurt as much when couhing but it seems that i am coughing more.....to add to all of this i took a nasty fall on the ice yesterday [ on my back} it slammed my head on the ice.. well today i am very achey esp in the neck area i must have twisted myself when i fell ...my main concern is need to cough altho i supress it by cough drops & the cough med..& i dont like this breathlesss feeling..forgot to mention i developed a cold too within the last couple days & was stuffy & all. ive heard a good remedy for coughs is to slice an onion put in a bowl & pour honey over it let it sit overnite & sip the next day.. which i am going to try


December 23, 2008 - 7:30pm
Nancy Drew Fan

Thank you so so much to everyone who took the time to respond to me and my questions about wheezing and bronchitis! I'm happy to report that it's about 95% cleared up now. Just knowing that what I was going through was normal made me feel better immediately. I thought something was wrong because 3 kinds of antibiotics weren't helping me and it seemed to be hanging on, but now I know that this is often typical of bronchitis.

To answer your question susanc, sadly, no one mentioned one word about the symptoms lasting a long time. Coach Virginia, I'm also a huge herbal/natural medicine fan and I've been cranking on the garlic, cayenne, vitamin C, etc., and I bought some licorice tea to try in case I get more wheezies tomorrow (I seem to be going on the every other day plan now-they come and go in that pattern but they're really mostly gone now). And to answer alison b's question no, I don't suffer from seasonal allergies at all.

Basically, I caught a dry cough from my sweet 3 year old son on Veterans Day, which turned into a thick cough in the chest, which got worse and turned into bronchitis after about 2 weeks, which is now clearing up after about a week and a half more. I think I've also had a head cold thrown in for good measure as I have used up about 6 tree's worth of Kleenex and to add insult to injury I even had a 24-hour stomach bug the day after Thanksgiving (which cleared out the wheezing for a full 24 hours afterwards--go figure!)

I have to say, I have gotten quicker, better, more comprehensive and caring information from this website about my bronchitis and wheezing than I did from a grand total of 3 doctors or PAs who I saw during this time. I was feeling down when I posted and the first reply immediately raised my spirits, as did each successive post. Thank you again to all of you--this site is such a blessing!

December 4, 2008 - 11:02pm
Coach Virginia

Alison, flax seed oil is not an herb and aloe vera is a cactus plant. The stomach maladies you described sound like a detox side effect. Flax seed oil has a laxative effect and aloe vera helps healing and healthy elimination by coating the intestinal walls. Was someone monitoring your protocol? I find it interesting that you were using those two things for respiratory conditions. Were they recommended by a health practitioner?

December 2, 2008 - 8:29pm
Alison Beaver

I have to say "ditto" to the above posts, as well! I wrote (back in the summer) about the EXACT same symptoms you have been having, and got to the point of assuming I was just always going to be sick.

Do you have seasonal allergies, by chance?

My symptoms continued to get worse, as I stopped taking what the doctor prescribed (same stuff you are on, plus a cough suppressant). I developed pleurisy from coughing so much towards the end of this, and then THAT took another 6 weeks to get over. I actually don't remember ever feeling better, just one day woke up and realized I wasn't feeling as bad: no more congestion, not wheezing as much, not coughing as much, actually slept that night.

Be patient, but do continue seeking medical treatment to make sure you don't develop anything further. It really did take me 2+ months to recover (I do suffer from allergies, but was wondering if I was developing asthma or pneumonia, just like you said. I wasn't--it was just the virus causing sinusitis, then bronchitis, then pleurisy for me).

One note: I highly respect Coach Virginia's posts, but wanted to give a cautionary tale. I do not typically use herbal supplements, and when I was desperate, I decided to try some fairly common ones (flax oil, aloe vera, etc). Since my body was not used to these substances (albeit, harmless by themselves), and I was already using all of my energy to fight off my infections/diseases...my body did not tolerate the herbal remedies and I THEN developed some awful stomach maladies during the week. I very much support herbal remedies, but hesitate to offer them as solutions to someone not already taking them while they are sick.

December 2, 2008 - 1:54pm
Diane Porter

NancyDrewfan, Susan and Virginia have given you excellent information, but I'll just chime in here to agree with the long recovery time.

A few winters ago I had this, and my bronchitis turned into Respiratory Airways Syndrome. I too was on the meds that you are on. My inhaler did work, albeit slowly -- the doctor said that an inhaler is one of the best ways to get medicine straight to the inflamed tissues of the lungs, so I kept at it (and eventually got over the jitteryness). It took me probably 8-10 weeks before I felt completely back to normal, so don't give up -- and don't quit too soon. Infections like that can rebound. Work on the natural cures, quiz your doctors when you need more information, and take heart in even the smallest improvement. Bronchitis is tough stuff to break.

Take care. And know that you're not alone in fighting this gunk.

December 2, 2008 - 9:32am
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