Bronchiectasis means damage to the airways leading to abnormal widening and distortion. This can result in mucus gathering in the small airways and becoming infected. Thus, bronchiectasis is one of the causes of persistent cough with sputum and recurring lung infections.
The diagnosis of bronchiectasis is made by a CT scan. Sometimes, bronchiectasis is seen on a CT scan carried out for a different reason and there might not be any symptoms.
There are a number of causes of bronchiectasis and a specialist will often arrange investigation to look for the cause. Often, the cause cannot be found even after investigation.
Bronchiectasis can be associated with reduced airflow in the airways and cause breathlessness. Lung function should be assessed by spirometry in bronchiectasis.
Treatment can be effective in reducing the frequency of lung infections in bronchiectasis. Appropriate inhalers can be helpful for breathlessness due to impaired airflow.