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Old 02-18-2006, 08:34 AM   #1
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Unhappy Persistent Cough times 3 months

Sorry if this long, but I am scared.

I have had this persistent dry cough since the first week of December 2005 and just saw the GI doctor yesterday thinking it may be acid reflux related, but he thinks it isn't, but gave me some Nexium to take just in case until I can get in to see the Pulmonary Specialist next week. I see the GI doc because of gastritis and I have had this cough since the day I had my upper endoscopy done the first week of December which was performed by a different GI doc then the one I saw yesterday.

I am 34 and a non-smoker and my bf is a smoker, but I make him smoke outside My cough is a dry cough and comes and goes all day long. For the most part, I can't finish a sentence without coughing. I have had chest x-rays (this done twice) and sinus x-rays done, been on two different inhalers (Advair and Combivent), two rounds of antibiotics and also taken over the counter medications. I also had a breathing test done too.

During all of this, I happened to get stung by a wasp and had to be put on Prednisone and that didn't even help with the cough. I have had a history of severe endometriosis and had a complete hysterectomy because of it and I had endometriosis on my liver and diaphragm (which it could not be lasered off on the liver when they did my surgery) and my doc said yesterday that there may be a possibility it could have come spread to my throat, but said that could just be one of many possibilities Another thing he did during my exam yesterday, was feel the front, lower part of my neck feeling the nodules and it hurt like heck

Like I mentioned earlier, he doesn't believe it is GI related and now I am off to see the pulmonary specialist next Wednesday. What should I expect. I am scared to death on what they will find. Not knowing what this cough is, is scaring me, especially when I woke up yesterday morning and had a little blood in both ears Any insight would be great!!

Thanks bunches!

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Old 02-18-2006, 07:51 PM   #2
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Re: Persistent Cough times 3 months

Just one thought, has anyone checked tonsils?

Plus I would call the pulmonary specialist and tell them about the blood they may want to see you sooner. Not sure what that means.

Last edited by dazedandconfused10; 02-18-2006 at 07:52 PM.

 
Old 03-12-2006, 10:15 AM   #3
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Re: Persistent Cough times 3 months

I had the same situation that lasted for more than six months. I then fell and broke my collar bone and the doctor gave me vicodin. In short, the cough stopped immediately. He kept me on vicodin for a month and I never once had a persistent cough. Immediately after being taken off the vicodin the persistant cough returned. I explained this to my Doctor and he prescribed one vicodin a day thereafter. I take it prior to going to bed and have never had a persistent cough again. (6 years)

 
Old 03-12-2006, 02:49 PM   #4
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Question Re: Persistent Cough times 3 months

did he say why he thought the vicodin worked, what he thought was going on? Thanks

 
Old 03-14-2006, 02:18 PM   #5
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Re: Persistent Cough times 3 months

Acid Reflux is one of the MAJOR causes of chronic cough. You have probably heart of acid reflux as it relates to heartburn - but that's only half of the story. Heartburn (GERD) occurs when acid backs up into the esophagous because the lower esophageal spinchter muscle (which keeps the acid in the stomach) is weak.

But there is a whole other kind of acid reflux called laryngopharyngeal reflux (LPR). LPR occurs when the acid (and it can be a very small amount) backs up into the esophagous - and keeps on going into your throat instead. In this case, not only is your lower esophageal spinchter muscle week, but so is the upper esophageal spinchter muscle . The acid then damages the sensitve larynegal and pharyngeal tissues that have no natural protection against acid. A drop of the acid lands on your larynx, and you have to cough - there is nothing you can do to stop that cough because the larynx has no natural protection against acid.

This is really serious stuff. Over time, the acid can cause changes in the cells lining the esophagous and throat. At worst, it can turn cancerous after many years.

But the same treatment for GERD works for LPR, only the dose is different. You need to take 2 doses per day of a Proton-Pump Inhibitor (like Nexium) to reduce the amount of acid in your stomach. Obviously, your stomach isn't producing too much acid and we're only treating the symptoms, but there is no pill for restoring pressure to the esophageal spinchter muscles.

An otolaryngologist (ENT) can do a simple scope of your throat in the office, and look for signs of LPR (redness and swelling, especially swelling of the larynx).

I have had LPR for over 3 years. I had a severe and unrelenting cough for 6 months with many relating complications. The first time I was given 2 Nexiums at once, my cough stopped in 20 minutes for the first time in 6 months. Since your doctor gave you Nexium already, why don't you take 2 pills together, and see how you feel.

There are many other LPR sufferers out there with the same symptoms - and they are on the GERD message board. Just look for the posts with LPR in the title.

Good luck.

 
Old 03-14-2006, 09:40 PM   #6
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Re: Persistent Cough times 3 months

Thank you aswander, that was the clearest explanation I've heard of that condition. Well I have an appt with a pulmonary dr mainly because whenever I get sick it is a nonstop cough. But if he does not see anything I will certainly ask about this. Thanks again.

 
Old 03-19-2006, 01:57 PM   #7
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Re: Persistent Cough times 3 months

I don't know how you would get blood in your ears but I would see an ear, nose and throat specialist before I would see a pulmonologist.

 
Old 03-19-2006, 05:11 PM   #8
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Re: Persistent Cough times 3 months

This is just a shot in the dark, but do you take any medication for high blood pressure? Certain hypertension medications can cause a dry cough. I know, I have been there.

 
Old 03-19-2006, 08:24 PM   #9
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Re: Persistent Cough times 3 months

Ace inhibiters cause a hacky cough without bringing anything up. Good reminder.

 
Old 04-20-2006, 10:38 AM   #10
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Re: Persistent Cough times 3 months

The coughing stopped when you took Vicodin because it has a Codeine derivitive in it and codeine will help with a cough. Hence, cough meds with codeine in them.

 
Old 04-20-2006, 11:03 AM   #11
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Re: Persistent Cough times 3 months

I have a dry cough too , I take toprol for high blood pressure..can this be why? Is that one of the medicines that cause a cough?

 
Old 04-20-2006, 08:22 PM   #12
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Re: Persistent Cough times 3 months

No bp meds for me, I saw a pulmonolgist and he did a chest xray, bloodwork and a PFT which I failed and I have asthma, now I'm just waiting to go back to see if he wants me to take anythign. Its annoying I cough day and night in bursts. Well at least nothing was on the chest xray and I have an answer.

 
Old 04-20-2006, 08:36 PM   #13
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Re: Persistent Cough times 3 months

A cough is not a side effect of Toprol. It is not an Ace Inhibitor BUT if you have any asthma it may make it worse as it can cause bronchospasms and is not recommended for someone with Asthma or other respiratory diseases. Toprol is a very specific strong BP med. Do not stop taking it but you might mention it to your Dr. and see if there is something else if you have noticed it only since you have been taking it.

Dazed, have you been allergy tested? It sounds as if you are having bronchospasms which could be allergy related. I would imagine he will put you on an inhaler to stop the spasms. There are many good ones available by prescription now.

 
Old 04-20-2006, 08:52 PM   #14
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Re: Persistent Cough times 3 months

I was allergy tested as a kid and back then it was like dust, hayfever, pollen, mustard which I outgrew. Thats a good point, it is very possible that with spring my allergies are aggravating the spasms. I guess for me the weird part is the coughing at the hospital, as the area I am usually in , is very vented, not recirculated and I think filtered but not sure and I've had the cough around the hospital. Can stress bring on an asthma attack, just seems like the timing is just bad, like maybe nerves?

 
Old 04-20-2006, 08:58 PM   #15
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Re: Persistent Cough times 3 months

Yes, stress can bring it on but it is usually acute not on and off like you mention. It does seem strange that in a virtually clean environment that you would get it unless there is a cleaning chemical or it could just be your asthma is kicking up. I would guess you will get some relief. I used to sneeze when the ground was covered with snow and not a pollen in sight. It always made my husband laugh that I could still find something to be allergic to.

 
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