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Throat felt scratchy in cold and after drinking coffee. Getting headache and muscle soreness. What's wrong?

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Answered by

General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2009
Answered : 983 Questions
Hello.. when i was younger i remember taking a sip of some very strong coffee, and as soon as i swallowed, my throat felt very scratchy as if I had a cold.. and then i developed a very bad cold with swolen glands, headaches, muscle soreness etc.. and it lasted for over 2 weeks. I thought maybe it was a coincidence so i wasnt worried about having coffee.. and i had a cold iced coffee.. like a frappucino, and it did not make me sick. Then, later on I had another strong starbucks latte and the same thing happend where as soon as i swallowed my throat became sore and i had a cold that lasted even longer than the first one. Ever since then i've avoided all hot coffee because the almost 3 week miserable cold isnt worth it. My question is.. is there such a thing as an allergy to coffee? Could the reaction be a very bad cold? Why wouldnt iced coffee bother me? Is there a way to test for this allergy without having to just drink coffee and suffer the consequences? Thanks -Katie
Posted Tue, 31 Jul 2012 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Answered by Dr. Aparna Kohli 53 minutes later
Thanks for writing in.
There is such a thing called allergy to caffeine but I doubt you have it, since you have no problem with iced coffee. The reaction could be anything from severe cough to a bad cold to symptoms like anxiety etc
I believe there are specialized tests to check for this. Although caffeine is not a regular thing they do on allergy tests, you can find out from your local physician as to whether this test is done somewhere close.
But if this has happened like twice ( the 2 instances you mentioned in the question) , then I think its more probable that its a coincidence than a true allergy.
Let me know if I can help you further
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