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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Suggest treatment for severe cough and irritation in the throat

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Dr. Michelle Gibson James

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2001

Answered : 15829 Questions

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Posted on Thu, 19 Apr 2018 in Medicines and Side Effects
Question: I've had a bad "cold" for several days now. It began 5 days ago, when my voice suddenly disappeared.
I've spit up sputum only once, but the worst part about this is that there is an irritation in my throat, that causes me to cough once, twice, or three times, and then I'm OK for a bit, and then it happens again.
I'm beginning to feel better with regard to other symptoms (lack of appetite, some possible slight fever for a bit, some minor aching in my two shoulders and upper arm). What can I do or take to allow me to stop coughing and sleep better? Thanks, XXXXXXX XXXX
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Answered by Dr. Michelle Gibson James 23 minutes later
Brief Answer:
different aspects of treatment

Detailed Answer:
HI, thanks for using healthcare magic

Coughing can be due to irritation of the airway and also drip of mucus to the back of the throat. The drip itself may not be detected, the person may mainly present with a cough.

Dextromethorphan is a cough suppressant , some cough medications use codeine as a cough suppressant instead

Robitussin has the cough suppressant dextromethorphan, if you combine this with sudafed which has a decongestant, this may help. There is also a form of sudafed that has both the decongestant and cough suppressant

The decongestant helps reduce the dripping to the back of the throat

If the cough is wet then a mucolytic, which helps to break up the mucus, may be needed eg bisolvan, guaifenesin, mucomyst

There are some persons who unfortunately may have a cough that persists after all of the other symptoms have resolved.
This is called post viral or post infectious cough and it can persist for weeks in those persons

I hope this helps, feel free to ask any other questions
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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