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Bad cough that won't go away

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by Smallpotatoes, Jan 23, 2010.

  1. Smallpotatoes

    Smallpotatoes Well-Known Member

    For the last 12 days I've had a really bad cough. It's been pretty uncontrolable at times. It's messed up my sleep patterns, it's affected my work (once, when leaving a voice message, I broke into an uncontrolable coughing fit). I haven't been to the gym in two weeks. I've coughed to the point where I briefly had an outer-body experience because of a lack of oxygen getting to my brain.
    I've sought medical attention for it twice. Both times I was told it was an upper respiratory virus, so antibiotics wouldn't work. It's post nasal drip that's caughing the cough. My lungs are clear, no wheezing, no pneumonia. They told me to use Affrin and Claritan, use a dehumidifier, etc.
    I've done those things. I've called in sick to work. I'm getting as much rest as I can. I'm not getting better. I'm worried it might be something more serious than what they've said and that I'm not going to get over it, that it may be a chronic thing.
    Should I see another doctor?
    Is there anything else I can do or is it just going to have to run its course?
  2. RickStain

    RickStain Well-Known Member

    Have you tried burning all your asbestos clothes?

    Okay, that didn't work...
  3. Rosie

    Rosie Active Member


    Get a second opinion - doctors are not infallible.
  4. Steak Snabler

    Steak Snabler Well-Known Member

  5. forever_town

    forever_town Well-Known Member

    I also have a cough that just won't go away. I've bought maximum strength Robitussin, I've bought more jars of Vicks Vapo Rub than I can count. I've popped so many Halls Maximum Strength cough drops with syrup in them that I don't know what to do. It's still there.

    My father also had a bad coughing fit, so he went to his doctor and his doctor prescribed an antibiotic. When the doctor asked him if someone else was having the same thing, Dad told him that I did and I didn't have health insurance. The doctor then gave Dad double the prescription and said the other part was for me to take.

    I think it must have helped because my cough is certainly less frequent now.

    But, yeah I agree with Rosie. Get a second opinion. Perhaps a third.
  6. bagelchick

    bagelchick Active Member

    Being that it's the weekend, you might want to try one of the drugstore clinics that are in Walgreens and CVS. There's also MedExpress depending on where you live. www.medexpress.com

    I also would not hesitate going to the ER, which will take an extraordinary amount of time and perhaps some out of pocket money, but if you are that concerned about what's happening with you, go now and do not question it.
  7. Smallpotatoes

    Smallpotatoes Well-Known Member

    My sister-in-law tells me that there is a virus that has coughing as its main symptom and it last for 12 weeks.
    If that's what I have somebody please shoot me now.
  8. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    It's going around . seems low grade but a pain in the butt to have.
  9. Lugnuts

    Lugnuts Well-Known Member

    Is it a dry cough, or is it wet and productive?
  10. Smallpotatoes

    Smallpotatoes Well-Known Member

    Wet and productive.
  11. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    Is it a hacking cough?

    I get them following a cold or the flu. And they won't go away. I'll be better, but left with this god-awful cough. Every time I breathe in, I feel the urge to cough. And when I coug, it is a dry, hacking cough that sounds like I have typhoid. Whole subway cars filled with people have piled into the other end of the car to get away from me.

    It happened three years in a row to me. Cold or flu, then that cough, and it wouldn't go away. My doctor tried some pills, codeine, etc., and the cough was impervious to the drugs.

    Same deal as you. It kept me up at night (it got worse at night) and my neighbors were as miserable as I was. The ONLY thing that took care of it was an oral steroid -- prednisone. My doctor never wanted to put me on it, so I'd suffer a few weeks before he'd finally give in, because they are not good for you to take too often. But he'd give me the pack and after 2 or 3 days, the steroid would get rid of the cough.

    The third year in a row this happened, he sent me to a pulmonary specialist; a lung doctor. She examined me and said, "You have asthma." I was in my late 30s and had no clue. She said that because of the asthma, anything that inflames my respiratory tract won't heal on its own. She then gave me a few inhalers, including one that is an inhaled oral steroid that I breathe in (much better for you than taking prednisone), and whenever I feel a cold coming on, I use it preventively. I haven't had a problem since.

    It also makes sense that when I used to play sports in the cold, I'd often have trouble breathing. I never thought very much about it, though. You don't realize something is a problem sometimes, until someone points it out to you. I just dealt with it, even though I'd always have trouble breathing and cough a lot in the cold.

    The night after I saw her, I called my dad and I told him the doctor told me I had asthma. He said, "Yeah, they told us that when you were a baby." Gee, thanks for filling me in, dad.
  12. Lugnuts

    Lugnuts Well-Known Member

    Have they sent you for a chest x-ray? How do they know the lungs are clear?

    The only thing that worked for me when I had a 2-week cough was prescription cough medicine with codeine. I would wake up with a jag in the night, swig it, then try very very hard not to cough.

    It's hard to get better if you can't sleep.
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