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I have had a chronic cough for over a year

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Posted on Sun, 3 Mar 2019
Question: I have had a chronic cough for over a year that has been unresponsive to OTC allergy meds. In late Dec I was diagnosed with acute bronchitis. Xray in mid January shows mild increased insterstitial markings, likely not acute. Blood work is normal. Breathing test (sustained blow into tube for 5 seconds) was "not bad" per my doctor. Follow up CT is scheduled. Non smoker, no known allergies, silent acid reflux. What would they be looking for on CT and how concerned should I be?
doctor
Answered by Dr. Jnikolla (42 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
Chest CT is needed to evaluate better lung tissue

Detailed Answer:
Hello and welcome in HCM

I can understand your concern

However it would be better for me to have some more information about your situation such as your age and gender, smoking status and your state of work if you work in polluted environment? Because there are some chronic lung diseases that might be cause from that.

Nevertheless if you were my patient I also would recommend a chest CT for you.
This is for the reason to evaluate the lung tissue (interstitial) better than it is seen in chest X ray.Do not worry this is just to be more sure about your actual lung situation
If you do chest CT you can attach it and I will try to help you again.

Regards

Dr.Jolanda
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Vaishalee Punj
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Jnikolla (56 minutes later)
Thank you. I will follow up with the CT results when I have them. I am a 39 year old female, overweight, never smoked. I have elevated blood pressure that is not being medicated. Since the cough started, I have moved from an apartment to a house with no change in the cough. I work in an office environment and have not seen any change in cough when I am away on business trips (generally 1-2 weeks at a time). I rode horses until 6 months ago. I am currently (since the xray was taken) on a steroid, cough suppressant, PPI, allergy med. My doctor wanted to throw multiple meds at it to try to minimize symptoms until the CT is done. I am occasionally out of breath but it has always seemed in line with my general fitness level. Currently I am walking 2-3 miles/day 4 days a week and 3-5 miles/day on weekends. Usually I have no issues there but I can have issues walking up 4-5 flights of stairs, etc. Cough is dry and worse at night/first thing in the morning.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Jnikolla (20 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
Could be acid reflux or exposure to animal dander/bird droppings

Detailed Answer:
Hi again

It is a good thing that you are a nonsmoker and with no serious comorbidities. There are cases where these findings in the chest x-ray ray may be due to chronic gastric reflux.

However do the chest CT scan and we will discuss again after the results.

Regards

Dr.Jolanda
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Vaishalee Punj
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Answered by
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Dr. Jnikolla

Pulmonologist

Practicing since :2003

Answered : 2488 Questions

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I have had a chronic cough for over a year

Brief Answer: Chest CT is needed to evaluate better lung tissue Detailed Answer: Hello and welcome in HCM I can understand your concern However it would be better for me to have some more information about your situation such as your age and gender, smoking status and your state of work if you work in polluted environment? Because there are some chronic lung diseases that might be cause from that. Nevertheless if you were my patient I also would recommend a chest CT for you. This is for the reason to evaluate the lung tissue (interstitial) better than it is seen in chest X ray.Do not worry this is just to be more sure about your actual lung situation If you do chest CT you can attach it and I will try to help you again. Regards Dr.Jolanda