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Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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What causes a dry cough, clogging of the throat, shortness of breath, and headache?

Answered by
Dr. Monish De


Practicing since :2004

Answered : 2083 Questions

Posted on Thu, 11 Oct 2018 in Cancer
Question: I am having a dry cough for month now - sometimes more sometimes less. more annoying than serious. I am on a vacation in the keys FL right now. the cough got worse lately and last night I woke up and could not breath. my throat was clogged. fortunately I had an inhaler with me - because I get short of breath sometimes - especially in airports - due to long ways. The experience last night was scary. And it was on a weekend.
I am very tired right now - sleeping is not easy when you have trouble breathing. Also severe headaches from coughing. I am 69 years old and overweight.
Answered by Dr. Monish De 16 minutes later
Brief Answer:

CT scan of chest recommended.

Detailed Answer:


As you are having dry cough for a month now and had an episode where you could not breathe, I would advise you to do a CT scan of chest.

For cough, I would start syrup Dextromethorphan hydrobromide sold in the market in the name of syrup Grillinctus twice daily after food for a week.

Since you had shortness of breath than apart from using inhaler Guafenisin, I would advise you to take Tablet Asthalin twice daily after food for 5 days with your doctors advise.

As you are having headache from coughing you can take tablet paracetamol once daily after food for 3 days

To find the exact cause of your cough and shortness of breath the CT chest is necessary to see:

-if there is any fluid accumulated in your lungs called pleural effusion or

-there is a space occupying lesion which could be a sign of malignancy or

-any changes suggestive of infection in your lungs.

As sleeping is not easy I would start tablet Alprazolam at night once daily after dinner for 5 days.

These are prescription medication which your local doctor will know.

Hope I have answered your query. If you have any more queries I will be glad to help.

Dr Monish De
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Prasad
Follow up: Dr. Monish De 7 hours later
I used PROAIR HFA (albuterol sulfate) - is that ok ?
Answered by Dr. Monish De 7 hours later
Brief Answer:

Yes you can use Albuterol sulfate

Detailed Answer:


PROAIR HFA used by you which contains Albuterol sulfate is okay.

It is a good bronchodilator used to treat or prevent bronchospasm in people with reversible obstructive airway disease and prevents shortness of breath.

It can has side effects such as bronchospasm ,nervousness, shaking headache, chest pain, palpitations, confusion, uneven heart rate, extreme thirst, increased urination, leg discomfort, muscle weakness or limp, dangerously high blood pressure, confusion, chest pain, shortness of breath, uneven heartbeats and seizure.

If you are having any of the above mentioned symptoms them you must consult your local doctor.

Hope I have answer your query.

Dr Monish De

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Kampana

The User accepted the expert's answer

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