Acute Bronchitis

Time to see a doctor

  • Coughing up mucus that may be yellow or green
  • Runny and stuffy nose starting a few days before the chest congestion
  • Feeling run-down or tired
  • Sore ribs from prolonged periods of coughing
  • Not being able to be as active
  • Wheezing or a whistling sound while breathing
  • If your symptoms persist.
  • Fever (low-grade)

We do NOT treat patients experiencing high fever, chest pain, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing.

Acute bronchitis is a very common inflammation of the lining of bronchial tubes, which carry air to and from the lungs. It is typically self-limited, resolving within 1-3 weeks. We recommend rest, increased fluid intake, a cough suppressant or other soothing remedies for the symptoms. A humidifier or steam may also help. Because viruses cause most cases, antibiotics are not usually recommended.



Cough is the main symptom in patients presenting with acute bronchitis. You might have a nagging cough that can last up to a few weeks, coughing up mucus that is clear, yellow, or green. You might also have normal cold or flu symptoms, like a stuffy nose, sore throat, or headache. People with bronchitis do not usually get a fever.


It’s often preceded by upper respiratory tract infection or the common cold caused by a respiratory virus and less frequently by a bacterial infection.