Hello, I'm 35 year old female, ex smoker but quit approx 11 years ago, had childhood asthma but never used inhaler and very mild,

Since September I've had a cough, sometimes plemy, sometimes dry, I've had about 2 colds aswell since then but they only last a short time, sometimes I cough a lot and get bad headaches, sometimes it keeps me awake,

It's now December and I've still got this cough, I've been to doctors a lot

1- Dr checked breathing and chest said all fine

2- cheked again and prescribed inhaler

(brown one) steroids and 2 puffs am and 2 puffs pm

Seemed to clear up a little,

3- follow up appointment approx 1 'month later, developed flu about 1/2 days before appointment so cough got worse, no sleep at night

Dr prescribed blue inhaler for emergencys, checked breathing again and uped my brown inhaler puffs to 4 in am and 4 in pm for 1 week, told to come back in a week.

So I am going back hopefully either tommorow or Monday, still coughing a lot not all day, plemy and dry cough, sometimes at night cough so much I gag.

It's really bothering me, /

Surely it should be gone by now,

Is it a chest infection or something else,

My work colleagues one who is a nurse says I shouldn't be coughing this much,

Just had enough now, any one else had similar? Is it asthma mixed in with one long cold, how can I get rid of it?

4 Replies

  • Hello.. you can get a cough..often dry with uncontrolled asthma. This cough is due to inflamed twitchy airways.This should settle with your brown inhaler. Corticosteroid inhaler. However before getting better you have got the flu which can set the asthmacontrol back again. Post flu or viral coughs can go on for months and are often worse if you have asthma because the airways become more inflammed. Phlegm is also from inflammed airways producing mucous. The dr is prescribing correctly. He needs to take into account any other symptoms such as breathlessness, chest tightness, nightime waking because of your chest and exercise. The dr should listen to your chest at your visit to check it hasn't developed into a chest infection. The phlegm often changes from yellow to green with a chest infection. If your phlegm is this colour now see a duty doctor today as you may need antibiotics. Hope this helps

  • Yes, you can have a cough that lasts this long I am afraid. But there are many unanswered questions in this post. If you're peak flow is down and you are still symptomatic despite an inhaled steroid (that I assume someone has checked that you are using ok) and this is asthma causing the cough you may need a course of oral steroids. but without a consultation I cannot be specific about anything.

  • My understanding is that it takes six to eight weeks for the Inhaled Steroids to reach full effectiveness. If things have not started to improve after being on a Steroid Inhaler for that length of time then it would certainly be advisable to review with your GP.

  • I suppose it could take 6-8 weeks but my experience is that they are usually effective within a week, maybe 10 days max.

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