Difference Between Bronchitis and Sinus Infection

When the airways in the lungs (bronchi and trachea) become inflamed, this condition is known as bronchitis. Sinusitis is inflammation of the sinuses brought on by microorganisms or allergies.



Bronchitis is an inflammation of the airways (bronchi and trachea) of the respiratory system.

Causes and prevalence

Over 90% of instances of acute bronchitis are caused by a virus such as a rhinovirus, respiratory syncytial virus, or parainfluenza may be a consequence of Covid. Bronchitis's other possible causes are bacterial infections and smoking. Tobacco use is directly linked to the development of chronic bronchitis. About 7% of the adult population has bronchitis every year.

Symptoms and Complications

Bronchitis is characterized by a cough that produces phlegm, difficulty breathing, and chest discomfort. A bronchitis cough will last for more than five days. Low-grade fever and wheezing have been reported. A high temperature may suggest Covid itself, or it may be the result of problems like pneumonia. Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and respiratory failure are two extreme complications that can result from bronchitis.


Analyses, such as molecular tests and chest X-rays, are necessary to rule out other disorders, such as Covid-19, that share the same symptoms. Sputum samples stained with Gram stain can help pinpoint the offending bacterium; however, this is typically unnecessary unless problems are detected.


Assistive medical technology, such as pain relievers, antitussives, mucus-loosening medication, and bronchodilators, can all be useful in the treatment of bronchitis. Azithromycin and other antibiotics may be recommended.

Sinus infection


Pain in the sinuses is a classic symptom of a sinus infection, which occurs when bacteria or viruses trigger an inflammatory reaction.

Causes and prevalence

Allergens in the air may also have a role in causing a sinus infection in addition to bacteria, fungus, and viruses. About 14% of adults will get at least one sinus infection every year, making sinus infections quite frequent.

Symptoms and Complications

Inflammation, discomfort, and swelling in the areas of the face that house the sinuses, in addition to stuffiness and a runny nose, are all symptoms of a sinus infection. You may also have a high temperature, a headache, and extreme fatigue. Meningitis and visual issues are two rare yet serious complications of sinusitis. If the bacteria causing the sinus infection go down the windpipe and into the bronchi, the consequence might be bronchitis.


Sinus infections are commonly diagnosed by observation and a physical examination. Sinus CT scans may be necessary if the condition persists so that the doctor may examine the sinuses and rule out any underlying causes of the sinusitis.


Steam inhalation or the use of a medication like oxymetazoline or phenylephrine nasal spray may be used to alleviate symptoms. Unfortunately, their usefulness is limited to a little period. When bacteria are suspected, antibiotics like amoxicillin and doxycycline may be administered.

Differences between Bronchitis and Sinus Infection



Sinus Infection


Infection of the airways (bronchi and trachea) causes bronchitis.

Sinusitis refers to inflammation in the sinuses.


Viruses are the most common cause of bronchitis, while bacteria and tobacco smoke also play a role.

Sinus infections can be brought on by anything from pollen and dust to viruses and bacteria.


Roughly seven percent of persons will get bronchitis at some point in their lives.

1 in 15 individuals will get a sinus infection every year.


Tightness in the chest, wheezing, a cough with sputum production, difficulty breathing, and a low-grade fever are all symptoms of bronchitis.

Pressure and swelling in the sinuses, stuffiness, nasal discharge, and fever are all signs of a sinus infection


Bronchitis can lead to pneumonia and, in rare cases, respiratory collapse.

Rarely, meningitis or bronchitis might develop from a sinus infection.


Drugs such as bronchodilators, pain relievers, mucolytics, and cough suppressants are used to treat bronchitis.

Nasal sprays and medicines are both common treatments for sinus infections.


In this article, we explained in detail the various differences between Bronchitis and Sinus Infection.

Updated on: 20-Jan-2023


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