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Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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How can chronic cough along with expectoration be treated?

Answered by
Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar


Practicing since :2008

Answered : 13958 Questions

Posted on Thu, 19 Apr 2018 in Lung and Chest disorders
Question: I wake with severe coughing, sometimes resulting in vomiting phlegm. I cough and spit phlegm for about 15-20 minutes every morning. Then it goes away.
Answered by Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 51 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Get done chest x ray and PFT.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your question on Healthcare Magic.
I can understand your concern.
You are having chronic cough (morning) with expectoration.
So we should definitely rule out lung infection (pneumonia) and bronchitis in your case.
So better to consult pulmonologist and get done clinical examination of respiratory system, chest x ray and PFT (Pulmonary Function Test).
Chest x ray is needed for the diagnosis of lung infection.
Pft is must for bronchitis.
Please let me know if you are a smoker.
I will be happy to help you further. Wish you good health. Thanks.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Yogesh D
Follow up: Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 1 hour later
I have never smoked. No lung infections ever. Just the normal flu/cold occasionally.
At my last teeth cleaning, my dentist asked me if I knew I had a "steady stream of post-nasal drip?" I said no, but I have been coughing a lot in the am. My dentist didn't say or recommend anything. My husband tells me that my coughing at night is increasing. I often sleep in the guest bedroom so as not to disturb his sleep. I use the Biotene Dry Throat Spray before bed and upon waking, but the morning coughing, spitting, gagging and about 2-3 times per week, vomiting phlegm persists. Where is all this phlegm coming from and do you think post nasal drip is the underlying problem? Is diet an issue? I keep mostly vegetarian (meat maybe a couple time/year) I never drink milk, but do enjoy all kinds of cheeses. I am willing to give up cheese for a period of time to see if the morning cough subsides. Ideas?
P.S. The meds I take daily are:
generic prozac (fluxetine 20mg)
generic hyzaar for BP (losartan 50mg - hydrovhlorothiazide 12.5mg)
baby aspirin 81mg
Answered by Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 49 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Yes, post nasal drip can be the cause.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your follow up question on Healthcare Magic.
I can understand your concern.
Yes, post nasal drip can be the cause.
I don't think cheese diet is causing this.
You are also taking antihypertensive drugs so we should definitely rule out cardiac diseases for this morning cough.
So please let me know
1. Do you have chest tightness, pressure in night before coughing?
2. Do you have breathlessness on exertion?
3. Do you have any swelling in feet?
Please reply me answers of above asked questions, so that I can guide you better. I will be happy to help you further. Wish you good health. Thanks.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Kampana
Follow up: Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 2 hours later
None of the above symptoms ever.
Occasionally at night I do swallow what I think is phlegm because it clogs my throat when I'm trying to get to sleep.
If it's post nasal drip, how can I treat it? Drugs? I prefer not to take any more than I already do.
Thank you so much for your insight and prompt replies. I am going to bed now and look forward to your suggestions in the morning.
Thanks and good night!
Answered by Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 2 hours later
Brief Answer:
Take loratidine or pseudoephedrine.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your follow up question on Healthcare Magic.
I can understand your concern.
Post nasal drip needs following treatment.
1. Drink plenty of fluids orally and keep yourself hydrated.
2. Do warm water gargles and steam inhalation 4-5 times a day.
3. Avoid dust and pollution.
4. Oral decongestant like pseudoephedrine (Sudafed) or loratidine (Claritin) should be tried once a day at night before going to bed.
These drugs are over the counter drugs and easily available.
Hope I have solved your query. I will be happy to help you further. Wish you good health. Thanks.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Kampana

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