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Suggest treatment for mucous secretion or sputum when i cough

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2003
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I am healthy and active 59 yr old male living between cold climate ( Canada) and tropical climate (Philippines) for 6 years. In past i have been subjected to heavy smoke environment but not in recent years. My bronchial tube constantly produces a large amount of white mucous or sputum which i cough up on average every 30 minutes. It keeps me from getting sound sleeps at night. I have had sputum test for cancer and TB which were negative. My doctor has given up but my research indicates possible candida. I have bad breath from this mucous. Please give your professional opinion from specialist in this area.
Posted Fri, 14 Mar 2014 in Lung and Chest disorders
 
 
Answered by Dr. Vaishalee Punj 41 minutes later
Brief Answer: May get pulmonary function test Detailed Answer: Hi Thanks for posting your query on HealthcareMagic. I have read your query. It is possible that you may be having candida infection. Since it is part of normal flora of respiratory tract, it goes unrecognized on microscopy of sputum. I also like to call it an overgrowth of candida in respiratory tract or respiratory candidiasis. Since it is part of normal flora it is not wise to try to get rid of it. Some lifestyle measures definitely help reduce it. Antifungal medicines are available, but I personally do not advise them for many reasons. One reason is that antifungals should be taken in life-threatening infections. Another reason is that it does not cure it and the fungi tend to grow back, sometimes they become resistant to anti-fungals. I one of my patients anti-fungal fluconazole resulted in development of skin rash. Thus I would advise you to take precautions that will help reduce it. My advise is as follows: - Take anti-allergic medicine like cetirizine etc to control secretions - Do not swallow the sputum, rather throw it out - Drink pure water at all times preferably filtered by the technique of reverse osmosis. In Canada it is available in some grocery stores. An RO system for home use is also available - Avoid taking unnecessary medicines especially the antimicrobials (anti-biotics, etc) as these may alter the normal flora and deteriorate the condition. Steroids should be avoided too. Omega 3, 6, 9 should be avoided too. - Probiotics may be of some help. - Daily exercise of atleast 20 min will help in gaining back the immunity. - I hope you have already ruled out conditions like diabetes etc by getting the routine blood tests done. I hope you have also ruled out other infections by getting sputum culture and sensitivity or throat swab. I would also like to rule out chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (asthma and chronic bronchitis) by getting the chest x-ray and pulmonary function tests done. Hope it helps. Let me know if I can assist you further. Dr Vaishalee
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: Suggest treatment for mucous secretion or sputum when i cough 5 days later
If a pulmonary function test proves negative can I take medicines to eliminate candida out my system ? Hi again, It is good that the pulmonary function tests came out negative. It rules out many conditions including asthma and bronchitis, etc. Now your specific question is that whether you should take antifungals. I do not think these would be helpful in long term. Firstly they may eliminate candida but these come with some penalty. Temporarily they will reduce the sputum but it will increase again. Thus mostly the anifungals need to be taken repeatedly lifelong. When taken repeatedly their side-effects outweigh the benefits. Thanks for consulting
 
 
Answered by Dr. Vaishalee Punj 2 minutes later
Brief Answer: Hi again, Detailed Answer: It is good that the pulmonary function tests came out negative. It rules out many conditions including asthma and bronchitis, etc. Now your specific question is that whether you should take antifungals. I do not think these would be helpful in long term. Firstly they may eliminate candida but these come with some penalty. Temporarily they will reduce the sputum but it will increase again. Thus mostly the anifungals need to be taken repeatedly lifelong. When taken repeatedly their side-effects outweigh the benefits. Thanks for consulting Dr Vaishalee Punj
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
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