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Bronchitis kettle, London, England, 1840-1980

The bronchitis kettle was and is used in the treatment of bronchitis. The steam produced helps the patient to breathe. Menthol can be added to the water in the kettle. This is used to relieve congestion in the nose and chest and also for pain relief. The long spout of the kettle makes it ideal for this purpose. People would improvise a bronchitis kettle at home by lengthening the spout of their own kettle with brown paper.

Object number:

A625884 Pt3

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Glossary: bronchitis kettle

Instrument used in the treatment of bronchitis.The kettle was filled with water then maybe a drug such as menthol (mint oil) was added. Using a small spirit lamp the kettle was heated. Steam came out of a long spout. The patient inhaled the steam which helped make eased the process of breathing.

Glossary: bronchitis

Inflammation of one or more bronchi (one of the larger air passages in the lungs), usually a result of infection. It is characterized by intense coughing.