There are a variety of respiratory conditions and illnesses that can cause the airways to narrow (medically referred to as bronchial stenosis), including asthma and emphysema. When this happens, wheezing or distressed breathing can be the result. Airway dilation is one treatment option to help restore adequate breathing in people who are suffering from bronchial stenosis. This procedure has a variety of approaches that may be used, depending on the condition that is causing the symptoms and the extent or severity of the airway narrowing. In some cases, surgery may be necessary to open the airways. In others, endoscopic techniques can be a less invasive option. These include instruments, such as a balloon, that are inserted into the airway to open it as safely and gently as possible. The pulmonary experts at Riverside University Physicians are highly trained and skilled in the use of airway dilation techniques to help our patients to breathe easier.