Asthma UK community forum

green phlegm(sorry)

Hi Despite having been asthmatic for over 30 yrs i have never had much of an issue with this problem before.

Since mid April i have producing rather alot of green gunk which im sure is aggravating my chest more.During my most recent admission(only home 10 days now) i was told i didnt have an infection as white cell count was ok and CRP was normal for me - so im confused as to why im having an issue with the gunk as its normally only around with infection.

Normally i have a very dry cough unless infection is present so this persistance is becoming a bit of a bug bear both for me and hubby who has to put up with me sounding like i smoke 60 a day!!!!

Does anyone have any ideas /suggestions as to what might be the issue

7 Replies

I have always thought that green phlegm was sign of infection...but I may be wrong.

I have been given saline nebs by physio's before to help loosen phlegm...they sort of worked but ended up making me wheeze quite a lot afterwards. Also postural drainage - which is also done by physio may help.

Not sure I have anything else helpful to add but hope it clears soon.


I too have had this symptom recently, no need to apologise - some people have worse!

I started coughing up A LOT of phlegm (In various colours) when I moved to Europe in October 2010. I usually don't cough up anything. I thought it was an infection and a doctor gave me antibiotics for 5 days. This helped moderately. After that, I still had a lot of phlegm (one time it was almost black) and I have been told by a respiratory specialist that it is not an infection, it is severe asthma. She gave me a nebuliser type of treatment and it really helped. I still am having thick, colourful phlegm but, not as bad as before.


Might be best get a sample sent off at your docs xxx


Have had similar issues with sinusitis & post nasal thick green phlegm since christmas. Had cold/flu twice over Christmas which kicked it off. Also had clear blood tests with only one slightly high reading. Had sample taken only after third lot of antibiotics and even then had to ask GP. I was told asthma/allergy gunge much more likely to be clear/white/yellow than green. Hope it gets sorted soon.


I don't have any suggestion as to what it might be, but I just wanted to say that something similar happens to me too.

I either have a dry cough or cough up typical asthma phlegm (clearish or whiteish). Occassionally I cough up very infected looking yellow or green phlegm. When this happens my bloods are fine, there is definitely no infection present.

I have absolutely no idea why it happens, but you're not alone!

Dawn x


Strangely enough I have been coughing up some disgusting stuff recently (green, yellow, bit of old blood). I have had a really good few weeks and when that happens I seem to clear out the bottom of my lungs and clear stuff which I imagine is from previous colds etc. I guess this isn't the case for you as it was happening in hospital! Unless you have changed meds which is allowing you to cough up more???

It isn't viral is it?? That wouldn't affect your white cell count would it?? Green phlegm does tend to suggest a viral infection. Even if it was viral surely it wouldn't last 6 weeks?

Take care



Thanks for your replies - i havent changed any meds in quite a while so that cant be a cause. The way things are going i amy well end up back in as the grass pollen peaks in which case i think i wil get the drs to send off a sample just to check for more deep seated problems


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