Bronchiolitis causes

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]; Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Ogheneochuko Ajari, MB.BS, MS [2]


Bronchiolitis usually affects children under the age of 2 years, with a peak age of 3 - 6 months. Bronchiolitis is a common disease in children and sometimes causes severe illness. Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is the most common cause of bronchiolitis. Other viruses that may cause bronchiolitis include adenovirus, influenza virus and parainfluenza virus. It may be caused by bacterial organisms like Legionella pneumophilia and Mycoplasma pneumonia. Other noninfectious causes include smoking, collagen vascular disease. It may also be caused after bone marrow transplant.


Common Infectious Causes


The following viruses may lead to the development of bronchiolitis:[1]


The following bacterial organisms may lead to the development of bronchiolitis:[2]

Common noninfectious causes

The most common noninfectious causes of bronchiolitis include the following:[3]

Causes by Organ System

Cardiovascular No underlying causes
Chemical / poisoning Ammonia, chlorine, diacetyl, gold, mirex, mustard gas, paraquat
Dermatologic Dermatomyositis, polymyositis, systemic lupus erythematosus
Drug Side Effect Busulfan, nimesulide, papaverine, penicillamine, pramipexole, rituximab, sulfamethoxypyridazine, sulfasalazine
Ear Nose Throat No underlying causes
Endocrine No underlying causes
Environmental No underlying causes
Gastroenterologic No underlying causes
Genetic Cartilage-hair hypoplasia, chronic granulomatous disease
Hematologic No underlying causes
Iatrogenic No underlying causes
Infectious Disease Adenovirus, Bordetella pertussis, Chlamydia pneumoniae, Chlamydophila pneumoniae, coronavirus, cytomegalovirus, Haemophilus influenzae, human bocavirus, human immunodeficiency virus, human metapneumovirus, influenza, measles, microsporidiosis, mumps, Mycoplasma pneumoniae, Nocardia, parainfluenza, respiratory syncytial virus, Rhinovirus, upper respiratory tract infection, Varicella zoster
Musculoskeletal / Ortho Cartilage-hair hypoplasia
Neurologic No underlying causes
Nutritional / Metabolic No underlying causes
Obstetric/Gynecologic No underlying causes
Oncologic No underlying causes
Opthalmologic No underlying causes
Overdose / Toxicity No underlying causes
Psychiatric No underlying causes
Pulmonary Bronchopulmonary dysplasia, upper respiratory tract infection
Renal / Electrolyte Systemic lupus erythematosus
Rheum / Immune / Allergy Chronic granulomatous disease, dermatomyositis, polymyositis, rheumatoid arthritis, Sjögren's syndrome, systemic lupus erythematosus
Sexual No underlying causes
Trauma No underlying causes
Urologic Mumps
Dental Mumps
Miscellaneous No underlying causes

Causes in Alphabetical Order


  1. Azkur D, Özaydın E, Dibek-Mısırlıoğlu E, Vezir E, Tombuloğlu D, Köse G; et al. (2014). "Viral etiology in infants hospitalized for acute bronchiolitis". Turk J Pediatr. 56 (6): 592–6. PMID 26388588.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Ryu K, Takayanagi N, Ishiguro T, Kanauchi T, Kawate E, Kagiyama N; et al. (2015). "Etiology and Outcome of Diffuse Acute Infectious Bronchiolitis in Adults". Ann Am Thorac Soc. 12 (12): 1781–7. doi:10.1513/AnnalsATS.201507-473OC. PMID 26524622.
  3. Garibaldi BT, Illei P, Danoff SK (2012). "Bronchiolitis". Immunol Allergy Clin North Am. 32 (4): 601–19. doi:10.1016/j.iac.2012.08.002. PMID 23102068.
  4. Chau SK, Lee SL, Peiris MJ, Chan KH, Chan E, Wong W; et al. (2014). "Adenovirus respiratory infection in hospitalized children in Hong Kong: serotype-clinical syndrome association and risk factors for lower respiratory tract infection". Eur J Pediatr. 173 (3): 291–301. doi:10.1007/s00431-013-2127-z. PMID 23995960.
  5. Choroszy-Król I, Frej-Mądrzak M, Hober M, Sarowska J, Jama-Kmiecik A (2014). "Infections caused by Chlamydophila pneumoniae". Adv Clin Exp Med. 23 (1): 123–6. PMID 24596014.
  6. Miller EK, Gebretsadik T, Carroll KN, Dupont WD, Mohamed YA, Morin LL; et al. (2013). "Viral etiologies of infant bronchiolitis, croup and upper respiratory illness during 4 consecutive years". Pediatr Infect Dis J. 32 (9): 950–5. doi:10.1097/INF.0b013e31829b7e43. PMC 3880140. PMID 23694832.
  7. Saber H, Saburi A, Ghanei M (2012). "Clinical and paraclinical guidelines for management of sulfur mustard induced bronchiolitis obliterans; from bench to bedside". Inhal Toxicol. 24 (13): 900–6. doi:10.3109/08958378.2012.725783. PMID 23121299.
  8. Kreiss K (2013). "Occupational causes of constrictive bronchiolitis". Curr Opin Allergy Clin Immunol. 13 (2): 167–72. doi:10.1097/ACI.0b013e32835e0282. PMC 4522912. PMID 23407121.
  9. Hallowell RW, Horton MR (2014). "Interstitial lung disease in patients with rheumatoid arthritis: spontaneous and drug induced". Drugs. 74 (4): 443–50. doi:10.1007/s40265-014-0190-z. PMID 24570384.
  10. Stock I (2014). "[Human rhinovirus diseases--epidemiology, treatment and prevention]". Med Monatsschr Pharm. 37 (2): 44–53. PMID 24624610.
  11. Kreider M, Highland K (2014). "Pulmonary involvement in Sjögren syndrome". Semin Respir Crit Care Med. 35 (2): 255–64. doi:10.1055/s-0034-1371529. PMID 24668540.