Coughing up phlem? Is this a normal asthma symptom?

Hi everyone,

I hope everyone here is well...I know I haven't been around for a while. My doctors are still debating if I have asthma or not, but I just had a question. When I try to go down a step in asthma treatment (as they advise me to), everytime I start coughing up clear/white phlem in about 4 days. Also, when they've had me completely off of the inhalers since ""you don't have asthma"" when I go to my doctor who thinks I do, and puts me back on the inhalers, again I spend several days coughing up white stuff until I'm on an upward trend again.

So I thought I ask. Is this a normal asthma symptom? Does anyone else get this? I'd really like to know.



16 Replies

  • I usually don't cough stuff up with my asthma but when I was coughing up a lot my GP said it was normal for a lot of asthmatics to, not 100% sure about it though!

  • Thanks for the note :). I figured if anyone would know that the people who hang out on this board would.


  • I do tend to cough up stuff but it is not white in colour so i would not be able to help :) hope it makes sense

    lots of love

    Amy xxx

  • Hi Bee. I very often do exactly the same - I usually see it as a bit of an early warning and step up the meds a bit when it happens. As long as it stays clear or white it's ok, but if it changes colour you've probably got some sort of infection and you need to see your GP. You'll probably also find that a cold makes it a lot worse maybe over several weeks (my record is 5 months) so watch out for that one, it's exhausting.

    I should mention it to the GP if I were you. It's another bit of evidence in the debate as to whether you have asthma or not.


  • I get it really bad constantly so have do take meds for it xxx

  • I've often wondered whether other people cough up phlegm like I do!

    I tend to cough it up several times a day. For me not coughing anything up is a bad sign (airways are too tight to cough it up). As I get better and my airways open up I tend to cough up lots, which sounds a bit like you are describing.

    Have you mentionned this to your doctors? Hope you get things sorted.

    Take care


  • Hi there,

    I'm glad I'm not the only one (although I wish none of us had this problem!). Strangely it's never occured to me to mention this to my doctors. I'm seeing my pulmonologist though in a few weeks so I will run it past him.

    Take care,


  • I regularly cough up phlegm (mainly first thing in the morning), usually when do I feel a bit better.

  • When my daughters Asthma is uncontrolled, she coughs up white frothy phlegm several times a day. She often seems better once its up. My husband coughs up most mornings too.

    I hope you get your symptoms under controls very soon. X

  • Hi Bee,

    Welcome to one of the more glamorous aspects of asthma.

    I always feel bit better after coughing it up.


  • HI BeeThere,

    I get lots of mucus every day and a big problem for me

    so the doctor put me on carbocisteine. to thin it down .

    love Glynis xxx

  • LOL. Yes, one of the more glamorous aspects of asthma is right! Thanks so much for letting me know I'm not the only one. I really should run this past my doctor, but sadly it's so normal for me never thought to. Taking something to make it thinner is a good idea too.


  • Coughing up phlem

    Yes I cough up clear phlem regularly.

  • I tend to get a lot of phlegm aswell and when I do get it within a few days it changes colour and then I have a chest infection. It used to last all winter only this time its lasting longer, I just finished a two week course of antibiotics last week and and then four days later I got an other two weeks course. Cant seem to get rid of chest infections.

  • Hi, I often cough up phlegm and as its a side effect of inflammation I'm sure it means my asthma isn't quite controlled. Interesting that it was coming on as you stepped down meds. Hope you are now well.

  • I cough up white phlegm after i've been taking prednisolone and then stop. This leads to breathing problems and having to eventually go back on steroids.

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