Dr. M.J. Bazos, Patient Handout


About Your Diagnosis
Tracheitis is an inflammation of the trachea, or wind pipe. It is usually caused by a viral infection such as influenza. It may resemble croup but occurs in adults. The inflammation is treatable and resolves within a few days.

Living With Your Diagnosis
Signs and symptoms of tracheitis include a nonproductive cough that becomes worse at night; pain while inhaling, especially cold air; fever, headache, and body aches; and loss of appetite. The throat may be reddened, and there may be tenderness of the trachea.

Rest until the symptoms subside. Nonaspirin medications such as Tylenol or Advil can be taken for the fever and body aches. A cool-mist vaporizerm will help to soothe the irritated air passages. Cough syrups and lozenges may also ease the soreness. Fluid intake should be increased. If solid foods are not tolerated, a liquid or soft diet should be taken until symptoms improve. Antibiotics are not necessary unless a secondary infection occurs.

The DOs
• Rest.
• Use nonaspirin products to reduce the fever and aches.
• Use a cool-mist vaporizer at the bedside, but remember to change the water and clean the unit daily.
• Increase your fluid intake.

The DON’Ts
• Don’t eat spicy foods or drink acidic juices or alcohol that may irritate the throat.

When to Call Your Doctor
• If you have a high fever.
• If you experience difficulty breathing.
• If you have difficulty swallowing liquids.