Bronchiectasis is a medical condition that affects the bronchial tube of the lungs. The bronchial tubes are permanently damaged, have widened and thickened. Because of this damaged air passages, it is a great place for bacteria and mucus to build up and pool in the lungs. This will cause constant infections and blockages of the airways.
The bronchial tubes are damaged due to an infection or other condition that injures the walls of the tubes. The production of mucus is the body’s way to remove inhaled dust, bacteria, and other small foreign particles. In bronchiectasis the airways have slowly lost their ability to remove the mucus, therefore creating mucus build up where bacteria will flourish. Complications include serious and recurrent lung infections.
These repeated infections will cause more damage to the airways and the lungs. If left untreated, the lungs will eventually lose its function. This can seriously affect the body because of lack of oxygen. Eventually, complications will emerge such as respiratory failure and heart failure.
When an injury is made to the lungs it can always cause bronchiectasis. The condition is categorized into two types: cystic fibrosis bronchiectasis or non-CF bronchiectasis.
The cystic fibrosis bronchiectasis is usually caused by abnormal genes or gene mutations and it is usually inherited. What is going on is that there is abnormal production of mucus in the bronchial tube.
The non-CF bronchiectasis is the opposite of the other category and mostly it is caused by:
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Autoimmune disorders
- COPD or Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
- Allergies to certain fungus
It has been found out that every one-third of bronchiectasis cases are caused by cystic fibrosis. Cystic Fibrosis is a disorder that not only affects the lungs but also organs like the pancreas and liver which results in damage to the organs or there is poor functionality of the organs.
The signs and symptoms of bronchiectasis can take months or years before they appear. The usual symptoms include:
- Chronic daily cough
- Coughing of blood
- There is wheezing in the chest when breathing
- There is shortness of breath
- Chest pain is common
- Weight loss without even trying too
- Recurrent respiratory infections
If you think you are suffering from Bronchiectasis you should seek medical assistance. You may also be entitled to Social Security Disability Benefits. The SSA considered Bronchiectasis as a medical condition that would make you eligible for SSDI and SSI. Social Security Administration (SSA) maintains a “Listing of Medical Impairments” (known as the blue book) that automatically qualify you for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI).