bronchiectasismedical dictionary

<respiratory medicine> Persistent and progressive dilation of bronchi or bronchioles as a consequence of inflammatory disease (lung infections), obstruction (tumour) or congenital abnormality (for example cystic fibrosis).

Symptoms include fetid breath and paroxysmal coughing, with the expectoration of mucopurulent matter.

It may affect the bronchioles uniformly (cylindric bronchiectasis) or occur in irregular pockets (sacculated bronchiectasis) or the dilated bronchi may have terminal bulbous enlargements (fusiform bronchiectasis).

Although rarely congenital, it is most often an acquired condition in childhood.

(13 Nov 1997)