Deep Learning Technology: Sebastian Arnold, Betty van Aken, Paul Grundmann, Felix A. Gers and Alexander Löser. Learning Contextualized Document Representations for Healthcare Answer Retrieval. The Web Conference 2020 (WWW'20)
Funded by The Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy; Grant: 01MD19013D, Smart-MD Project, Digital Technologies
Acute bronchitis is one of the most common diseases. About 5% of adults are affected and about 6% of children have at least one episode a year. It occurs more often in the winter. More than 10 million people in the United States visit a doctor each year for this condition with about 70% receiving antibiotics which are mostly not needed. There are efforts to decrease the use of antibiotics in acute bronchitis.
Most cases of chronic bronchitis are caused by smoking cigarettes or other forms of tobacco. Additionally, chronic inhalation of air pollution or irritating fumes or dust from hazardous exposures in occupations such as coal mining, grain handling, textile manufacturing, livestock farming, and metal moulding may also be a risk factor for the development of chronic bronchitis. Protracted bacterial bronchitis is usually caused by "Streptococcus pneumoniae", "Non-typable Haemophilus influenzae", or "Moraxella catarrhalis".
Pneumonia occurs in a variety of situations and treatment must vary according to the situation. It is classified as either community or hospital acquired depending on where the patient contracted the infection. It is life-threatening in the elderly or those who are immunocompromised. The most common treatment is antibiotics and these vary in their adverse effects and their effectiveness. Pneumonia is also the leading cause of death in children less than five years of age in low income countries. The most common cause of pneumonia is pneumococcal bacteria, "Streptococcus pneumoniae" accounts for 2/3 of bacteremic pneumonias. This is a dangerous type of lung infection with a mortality rate of around 25%.
For optimal management of a pneumonia patient, the following must be assessed: pneumonia severity (including treatment location, e.g., home, hospital or intensive care), identification of causative organism, analgesia of chest pain, the need for supplemental oxygen, physiotherapy, hydration, bronchodilators and possible complications of emphysema or lung abscess.
As the lungs tend to be vulnerable organs due to their exposure to harmful particles in the air, several things can cause an acute exacerbation of COPD:
- Respiratory infection, being responsible for approximately half of COPD exacerbations. Approximately half of these are due to viral infections and another half appears to be caused by bacterial infections. Common bacterial pathogens of acute exacerbations include "Haemophilus influenzae", "Streptococcus pneumoniae" and "Moraxella catarrhalis". Less common bacterial pathogens include "Chlamydia pneumoniae" and "MRSA". Pathogens seen more frequently in patients with impaired lung function (FEV<35% of predicted) include "Haemophilus parainfluenzae" (after repeated use of antibiotics), "Mycoplasma pneumoniae" and gram-negative, opportunistic pathogens like "Pseudomonas aeruginosa" and "Klebsiella pneumoniae".
- Allergens, e.g., pollens, wood or cigarette smoke, pollution
- Toxins, including a variety of different chemicals
- Air pollution
- Failing to follow a drug therapy program, e.g. improper use of an inhaler
In one-third of all COPD exacerbation cases, the cause cannot be identified.
To help the bronchial tree heal faster and not make bronchitis worse, smokers should quit smoking completely.
Acute exacerbations can be partially prevented. Some infections can be prevented by vaccination against pathogens such as influenza and "Streptococcus pneumoniae". Regular medication use can prevent some COPD exacerbations; long acting beta-adrenoceptor agonists (LABAs), long-acting anticholinergics, inhaled corticosteroids and low-dose theophylline have all been shown to reduce the frequency of COPD exacerbations. Other methods of prevention include:
- Smoking cessation and avoiding dust, passive smoking, and other inhaled irritants
- Yearly influenza and 5-year pneumococcal vaccinations
- Regular exercise, appropriate rest, and healthy nutrition
- Avoiding people currently infected with e.g. cold and influenza
- Maintaining good fluid intake and humidifying the home, in order to help reduce the formation of thick sputum and chest congestion.
Acute bronchitis is one of the most common diseases. About 5% of adults are affected and about 6% of children have at least one episode a year. It occurs more often in the winter.
In infants under one year of age, acute bronchitis was the most common reason for admission to the hospital after an emergency department visit in the US in 2011.
Lower respiratory infectious disease is the fifth-leading cause of death and the combined leading infectious cause of death, being responsible for 2·74 million deaths worldwide. This is generally similar to estimates in the 2010 Global Burden of Disease study.
This total only accounts for "Streptococcus pneumoniae" and "Haemophilus Influenzae" infections and does not account for atypical or nosocomial causes of lower respiratory disease, therefore underestimating total disease burden.
The primary risk factor for COPD globally is tobacco smoking. Of those who smoke, about 20% will get COPD, and of those who are lifelong smokers, about half will get COPD. In the United States and United Kingdom, of those with COPD, 80–95% are either current smokers or previously smoked. The likelihood of developing COPD increases with the total smoke exposure. Additionally, women are more susceptible to the harmful effects of smoke than men. In nonsmokers, secondhand smoke is the cause of about 20% of cases. Other types of smoke, such as, marijuana, cigar, and water-pipe smoke, also confer a risk. Water-pipe smoke appears to be as harmful as smoking cigarettes. Problems from marijuana smoke may only be with heavy use. Women who smoke during pregnancy may increase the risk of COPD in their child. For the same amount of cigarette smoking, women have a higher risk of COPD than men.
Pneumonia is due to infections caused primarily by bacteria or viruses and less commonly by fungi and parasites. Although there are more than 100 strains of infectious agents identified, only a few are responsible for the majority of the cases. Mixed infections with both viruses and bacteria may occur in up to 45% of infections in children and 15% of infections in adults. A causative agent may not be isolated in approximately half of cases despite careful testing.
The term "pneumonia" is sometimes more broadly applied to any condition resulting in inflammation of the lungs (caused for example by autoimmune diseases, chemical burns or drug reactions); however, this inflammation is more accurately referred to as pneumonitis.
Conditions and risk factors that predispose to pneumonia include smoking, immunodeficiency, alcoholism, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, chronic kidney disease, and liver disease. The use of acid-suppressing medications—such as proton-pump inhibitors or H2 blockers—is associated with an increased risk of pneumonia. The risk is also increased in old age.
Bacteria are the most common cause of community-acquired pneumonia (CAP), with "Streptococcus pneumoniae" isolated in nearly 50% of cases. Other commonly isolated bacteria include "Haemophilus influenzae" in 20%, "Chlamydophila pneumoniae" in 13%, and "Mycoplasma pneumoniae" in 3% of cases; "Staphylococcus aureus"; "Moraxella catarrhalis"; "Legionella pneumophila" and Gram-negative bacilli. A number of drug-resistant versions of the above infections are becoming more common, including drug-resistant "Streptococcus pneumoniae" (DRSP) and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).
The spreading of organisms is facilitated when risk factors are present. Alcoholism is associated with "Streptococcus pneumoniae", anaerobic organisms, and "Mycobacterium tuberculosis"; smoking facilitates the effects of "Streptococcus pneumoniae", "Haemophilus influenzae", "Moraxella catarrhalis", and "Legionella pneumophila". Exposure to birds is associated with "Chlamydia psittaci"; farm animals with "Coxiella burnetti"; aspiration of stomach contents with anaerobic organisms; and cystic fibrosis with "Pseudomonas aeruginosa" and "Staphylococcus aureus". "Streptococcus pneumoniae" is more common in the winter, and should be suspected in persons aspirating a large amount of anaerobic organisms.
Poorly ventilated cooking fires, often fueled by coal or biomass fuels such as wood and dung, lead to indoor air pollution and are one of the most common causes of COPD in developing countries. These fires are a method of cooking and heating for nearly 3 billion people, with their health effects being greater among women due to more exposure. They are used as the main source of energy in 80% of homes in India, China and sub-Saharan Africa.
People who live in large cities have a higher rate of COPD compared to people who live in rural areas. While urban air pollution is a contributing factor in exacerbations, its overall role as a cause of COPD is unclear. Areas with poor outdoor air quality, including that from exhaust gas, generally have higher rates of COPD. The overall effect in relation to smoking, however, is believed to be small.
There is low or very-low quality evidence that probiotics may be better than placebo in preventing acute URTIs. Vaccination against influenza viruses, adenoviruses, measles, rubella, "Streptococcus pneumoniae", "Haemophilus influenzae", diphtheria, "Bacillus anthracis", and "Bordetella pertussis" may prevent them from infecting the URT or reduce the severity of the infection.
Children have 2-9 viral respiratory illnesses per year. In 2013 18.8 billion cases of upper respiratory infections were reported. As of 2014, upper respiratory infections caused about 3,000 deaths down from 4,000 in 1990. In the United States, URIs are the most common infectious illness in the general population. URIs are the leading reasons for people missing work and school.
A 2014 systematic review of clinical trials does not support using routine rapid viral testing to decrease antibiotic use for children in emergency departments. It is unclear if rapid viral testing in the emergency department for children with acute febrile respiratory infections reduces the rates of antibiotic use, blood testing, or urine testing. The relative risk reduction of chest x-ray utilization in children screened with rapid viral testing is 77% compared with controls. In 2013 researchers developed a breath tester that can promptly diagnose lung infections.
Normal surgical masks and N95 masks appear equivalent with respect to preventing respiratory infections.
Bronchiolitis obliterans has many possible causes, including collagen vascular disease, transplant rejection in organ transplant patients, viral infection (respiratory syncytial virus, adenovirus, HIV, cytomegalovirus), Stevens-Johnson syndrome, Pneumocystis pneumonia, drug reaction, aspiration and complications of prematurity (bronchopulmonary dysplasia), and exposure to toxic fumes, including diacetyl, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, ammonia, chlorine, thionyl chloride, methyl isocyanate, hydrogen fluoride, hydrogen bromide, hydrogen chloride, hydrogen sulfide, phosgene, polyamide-amine dyes, mustard gas and ozone. It can also be present in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. Certain orally administrated emergency medications, such as activated charcoal, have been known to cause it when aspirated. The ingestion of large doses of papaverine in the vegetable Sauropus androgynus has caused it. Additionally, the disorder may be idiopathic (without known cause).
There are many industrial inhalants that are known to cause various types of bronchiolitis, including bronchiolitis obliterans.
Industrial workers who have presented with bronchiolitis:
- nylon-flock workers
- workers who spray prints onto textiles with polyamide-amine dyes
- battery workers who are exposed to thionyl chloride fumes
- workers at plants that use or manufacture flavorings, e.g. diacetyl butter-like flavoring
The hygiene hypothesis attempts to explain the increased rates of asthma worldwide as a direct and unintended result of reduced exposure, during childhood, to non-pathogenic bacteria and viruses. It has been proposed that the reduced exposure to bacteria and viruses is due, in part, to increased cleanliness and decreased family size in modern societies. Exposure to bacterial endotoxin in early childhood may prevent the development of asthma, but exposure at an older age may provoke bronchoconstriction. Evidence supporting the hygiene hypothesis includes lower rates of asthma on farms and in households with pets.
Use of antibiotics in early life has been linked to the development of asthma. Also, delivery via caesarean section is associated with an increased risk (estimated at 20–80%) of asthma—this increased risk is attributed to the lack of healthy bacterial colonization that the newborn would have acquired from passage through the birth canal. There is a link between asthma and the degree of affluence which may be related to the hygiene hypothesis as less affluent individuals often have more exposure to bacteria and viruses.
Respiratory disease is a common and significant cause of illness and death around the world. In the US, approximately 1 billion "common colds" occur each year. A study found that in 2010, there were approximately 6.8 million emergency department visits for respiratory disorders in the U.S. for patients under the age of 18. In 2012, respiratory conditions were the most frequent reasons for hospital stays among children.
In the UK, approximately 1 in 7 individuals are affected by some form of chronic lung disease, most commonly chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, which includes asthma, chronic bronchitis and emphysema.
Respiratory diseases (including lung cancer) are responsible for over 10% of hospitalizations and over 16% of deaths in Canada.
In 2011, respiratory disease with ventilator support accounted for 93.3% of ICU utilization in the United States.
Many environmental factors have been associated with asthma's development and exacerbation including allergens, air pollution, and other environmental chemicals. Smoking during pregnancy and after delivery is associated with a greater risk of asthma-like symptoms. Low air quality from factors such as traffic pollution or high ozone levels has been associated with both asthma development and increased asthma severity. Over half of cases in children in the United States occur in areas with air quality below EPA standards. Low air quality is more common in low-income and minority communities.
Exposure to indoor volatile organic compounds may be a trigger for asthma; formaldehyde exposure, for example, has a positive association. Also, phthalates in certain types of PVC are associated with asthma in children and adults. While exposure to pesticides is linked to the development of asthma it is unclear if this is a cause and effect relationship.
There is an association between acetaminophen (paracetamol) use and asthma. The majority of the evidence does not, however, support a causal role. A 2014 review found that the association disappeared when respiratory infections were taken into account. Use by a mother during pregnancy is also associated with an increased risk as is psychological stress during pregnancy.
Asthma is associated with exposure to indoor allergens. Common indoor allergens include dust mites, cockroaches, animal dander (fragments of fur or feathers), and mold. Efforts to decrease dust mites have been found to be ineffective on symptoms in sensitized subjects. Certain viral respiratory infections, such as respiratory syncytial virus and rhinovirus, may increase the risk of developing asthma when acquired as young children. Certain other infections, however, may decrease the risk.
Tuberculosis, pneumonia, inhaled foreign bodies, allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis and bronchial tumours are the major acquired causes of bronchiectasis. Infective causes associated with bronchiectasis include infections caused by the Staphylococcus, Klebsiella, or Bordetella pertussis, the causative agent of whooping cough and nontuberculous mycobacteria.
Aspiration of ammonia and other toxic gases, pulmonary aspiration, alcoholism, heroin (drug use), various allergies all appear to be linked to the development of bronchiectasis.
Various immunological and lifestyle factors have also been linked to the development of bronchiectasis:
- Childhood Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), which predisposes patients to a variety of pulmonary ailments, such as pneumonia and other opportunistic infections.
- Inflammatory bowel disease, especially ulcerative colitis. It can occur in Crohn's disease as well, but does so less frequently. Bronchiectasis in this situation usually stems from various allergic responses to inhaled fungal spores. A Hiatal hernia can cause Bronchiectasis when the stomach acid that is aspirated into the lungs causes tissue damage.
- People with rheumatoid arthritis who smoke appear to have a tenfold increased rate of the disease. Still, it is unclear as to whether or not cigarette smoke is a specific primary cause of bronchiectasis.
- Case reports of Hashimoto's thyroiditis and bronchiectasis occurring in the same persons have been published.
No cause is identified in up to 50% of non-cystic-fibrosis related bronchiectasis.
Patients, families, and caregivers are encouraged to join the NIH Rare Lung Diseases Consortium Contact Registry. This is a privacy protected site that provides up-to-date information for individuals interested in the latest scientific news, trials, and treatments related to rare lung diseases.
Health care professionals are at risk of occupational influenza exposure; during a pandemic influenza, anyone in a close environment is at risk, including those in an office environment.
Tobacco smoke is a known carcinogen. Workers in the hospitality industry may be exposed to tobacco smoke in the workplace, especially in environments like casinos and bars/restaurants.