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laryngo spasms

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Old 05-25-2003, 07:07 PM   #1
Join Date: May 2003
Location: vancouver, wa, usa
Posts: 1
olstyl1972 HB User
Exclamation laryngo spasms

recently i got an ambulance ride to the e r after a coughing spell made my throat close and i couldn't breathe. The doctor said i was having laryngo spasms. These spasms occur the worst first thing in the morning when i first cough. usally it only lasts for a second but this morning it lasted almost to the point of my losing conciousness. I also saw a throat specialist a week ago who confirmed the laryngo spasm diagnosis and advised me to try not to cough and it would just go away, but the doctors cant seem to figure out why i'm coughing to begin with. they seem to think i have athsma and acid reflux. both of which i can live with but my throat closing when i cough has got me pretty scared. does anyone else have this problem that can offer my some tips as to what i can do when i cant suck a breath in besides wait untill i pass out so my throat will relax. by the way i'm 30 and never have smoked. please help thank you

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Old 05-25-2003, 08:44 PM   #2
Senior Member
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Chilliwack, BC, Canada
Posts: 172
charleyhorse HB User

Hi ... that sounds like a terribly frightening experience. Your symptoms made me think Vocal Cord Dysfunction so I looked up a few references and found this quote on several sites: "there is controversy and disagreement among doctors about the difference(s) between laryngospasm and VCD. There is also disagreement about how to define laryngospasm." With that in mind, you might do well checking out references on the Net to VCD (there are lots of them) -There are some breathing exercises in particular that are supposed to be quite helpful during an attack. I have a friend with VCD - during an attack she finds it easier to breathe through her nose - if she panics and tries to force breaths through her mouth it just makes it worse.

Old 07-03-2005, 09:32 AM   #3
Junior Member
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 44
hannahbob04 HB User
Re: laryngo spasms

I have been diagnosed with having laryngospasms. Mine tend to happen when I'm laughing/crying/coughing really hard. The best thing to do is NOT panic, I know this is difficult, but it will make it pass much quicker. Educate yourself on this...knowing what's going on and finding what triggers it for you will help a lot. Mine tend to last longer than most...usually at least 3 minutes, sometimes up to 10. I had to have the ambulance called twice from my high school and twice from my home and my parents had taken me to the ER 2-3 times before I went to a lung doctor who told me it had nothing to do with my lungs, but my vocal cords. I will try to explain the breathing exercise I do...but this might not make any sense...haha...when I'm having an episode, I kinda do this puckering thing with my lips and I just focus on EXHALING (even if I don't feel like I need to exhale & I have to breathe through my mouth) and pushing the air out as hard as I can. As soon as I'm able to do that, I take a breath in. And I repeat the process until the spasms stop. It sounds weird cuz when you can't breathe all you think about is getting air in, but when I do what I typed above it really helps. I have GAD and Acid Reflux, so perhaps those are some valid causes of this problem.

Last edited by hannahbob04; 07-03-2005 at 09:33 AM.

Old 07-04-2005, 09:39 PM   #4
Junior Member
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 14
cmotzel HB User
Re: laryngo spasms

I was so glad to read this post! I am experiencing coughing and difficulty breathing! They keep saying it is asthma. I say that it isn't. It feels like a wheeze in my throat. One time I coughed so hard I couldn't breath at all for a while.

How often do you get these spasms? Also, do you have any ther symptoms (shortness of breath, rapid heart rate)

Old 07-27-2005, 12:59 PM   #5
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 1
kitten29710 HB User
Re: laryngo spasms

I had the same thing to happen to me , it was very freightnenig , my dr suggested i get a small cylindr of O2 becasue i felt better after being given O2 and Nitroglycerine so he suggested i keep nitro aqith me and use it when it happens and getting a O2 cylinder .

Old 07-14-2006, 11:32 AM   #6
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Fort Pierce, Fl
Posts: 1
Tiffany37 HB User
Exclamation Re: laryngo spasms

Wow I cant believe that so many people have the same problem as me. About 3 weeks ago I started out with a dry cough. Just a minor cold I thought, until one night I was sleeping and I coughed once and I noticed that I couldnt breathe. I PANICKED. I had no idea what had happened. A friend of mine thought I was choking and so they gave me the Heimlich manuvor.I began to vomit white foam all over the place. After what seemed like 10 miniutes I began to slowly breathe. It felt like I was breathing through a straw.
The next day I went to the doctor and they told me that I have Syringitis (inflammation of the throat) and they gave me a shot in the booty and drew my blood and cotton swabbed me. Everything was found negative and the shot of antibiotics didnt help. After a few more times of my throat closing up I was able to not panick as much, but thats hard to do. I decided to go to the Ears, nose, and throat doctor. They stuck that long camera down my nose and looked around. The doctor diagnosed me with Laryngo Spasms as well. Since I dont have asthma he said it was a severe case of acid reflux. He said that the white foam I vomit is stomach acid. I couldnt see how that was since I never felt any heartburn or soreness at all. My diet has always been the same. Isnt it abnormal for me to be so young and have acid reflux? Im only 18!
He gave me a ten day supply of Nexium and told me to get on Prilosec OTC for 6 weeks. When I asked him what should I do if another attack comes and he said he didnt know he just knew that I wouldnt die, just simply pass out. I DONT WANT TO PASS OUT! I noticed that some of you are doing breathing exercises. What am I suppose to do within the next 6 weeks? I hate these attacks and it scares me to death to go to sleep at night. Please give me your suggestions.

Old 07-15-2006, 08:00 AM   #7
Senior Veteran
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 564
aswaer HB Useraswaer HB User
Re: laryngo spasms

Hi everyone, your doctors are idiots!!!!! I get so frustrated hearing about ENT and asthma doctors who clearly haven't been reading their own trade magazines like "Laryngoscope".

Acid reflux is likely the root cause of all of your problems. When acid causes more throat/coughing/lump sensation/constrictions problems than symptoms like hearburn, you likely have a version of acid reflux called "laryngopharyngeal reflux". It's known informally as "LPR".
It's a nasty bugger because it ususally will never heal, and needs to be aggressively treated for life with a double dose of a PPI every day. Got that?

First of all, Prilosec OTC is not going to work - just toss it out. Here's why - the dosage is too low, but more importantly, it's not "real Prilosec". Real Prilosec is still sold by prescription. It's makers, Astrazeneca, to make some money, liscensed the name "Prilosec" out to another company, that produces the "Prilosec OTC". I switched to it temporarily when it came out on the market (cause it was cheaper), and not only did all my old symptoms returned, but it even gave me new ones! There is NOT ONE SINGLE PERSON on the acid reflux message board who has been helped by Prilosec OTC. Go ask them yourself.

Than said, I'll tell you what you can take. You will need 2 doses a day of any of these PPIs (all available by presciription):
-Prilosec (BRAND, manufactured by Astrazenec)

In my opinion, Nexium works the best and Protonix is pretty ineffective.
However, many people have to experiment to find what works best for them. Just ask your doctor for free samples of all the PPIs he's got in his closet from the drug reps and start experimenting.

Timing is another factor. Do you take the 2 doses together, or space them out? There is no good answer to this. On the Acid Reflux board, this has been debated many times, and it comes down to you doing whatever works best for yourself. For me, I must have the double dose at the same time. I've found that spacing them out brings back the symptoms. Other people swear that they need to space them out. I take my 2 doses together in the morning.
I had been on 1 dose of Nexium per day for 4 months, and was ready to jump off a bridge I was so sick. The day my doctor changed my dosage to 2 pills a day, I experienced total symptom relief within 30 minutes of my first double dose. Typically, people get relief between 1-30 days of starting the double dose therapy.

Just in case you are bowled over in disbelief, I'm providing you with links to a U.S. government hosted research database called pubmed - which contains citations of all medical and scientific research articles. You just pop in "laryngopharyngeal reflux" or "LPR" and you get abstracts of all the cutting edge research. you can bring these citations to your wonderful doctors, seeing as they'll probably not believe you without them. You can access it yourself by going to [url][/url] .

I'm allowed to post this web address because it is a U.S. government web address.

To make your first foray a little easier, here are links to some of the most relevant citations on pubmed for you:

[url] [/url] bstract&list_uids=16598989&query_hl=17&i tool=pubmed_DocSum

[url] [/url] bstract&list_uids=16189367&query_hl=37&i tool=pubmed_docsum

[url] [/url] bstract&list_uids=15995512&query_hl=37&i tool=pubmed_docsum (NOTE THAT "BID" means "2 pills per day")

[url] [/url] bstract&list_uids=16615600&query_hl=17&i tool=pubmed_DocSum

[url] [/url] bstract&list_uids=16817916&query_hl=1&it ool=pubmed_docsum

[url] [/url] bstract&list_uids=16787744&query_hl=1&it ool=pubmed_DocSum

[url] [/url] bstract&list_uids=16778364&query_hl=1&it ool=pubmed_DocSum

[url] [/url] bstract&list_uids=16816932&query_hl=14&i tool=pubmed_DocSum

[url] [/url] bstract&list_uids=11593175&query_hl=37&i tool=pubmed_docsum

Old 02-18-2008, 11:42 AM   #8
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Houston TX USA
Posts: 4
Bulldogmom12 HB User
Exclamation Re: laryngo spasms

My son also has laryngospasms. He used to clear his throat alot, have a dry cough & vomit clear liquid. This is not only stomach acid, but also saliva, caused from swallowing a lot in trying to clear the vocal cords. He started having spasms during the night occasionally, Yes, they are very scary, especially since my son has muscular dystrophy with impaired lung capacity. We have elevated the head of his bed several inches, but may have to go to a hospital bed since his reflux is mainly caused by the fact that he has trouble sitting up straight & his stomach is pushed out of place & up higher than it should be. He takes Prevacid twice daily, but may have to go back to Zegerid which he was on for a while. Also, if you have reflux remember not to eat 3 hours before bedtime to allow the stomach to empty some.

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