British Lung Foundation
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Coughing and blacking out

I have had a cough for several weeks now. Have been given two types of antibiotics. I don't cough at night only during day. Have had three episodes of when i cough i have blacked out. Very frightening. Cough doesn't seem to be getting and better. I stripped a lot of ivy off a garage. Was wondering if that might be something to do with it.

4 Replies

I once stripped some old ivy off a garden wall and I was surprised at how much dust was in there once the outer leaves had been pulled away. I was a lot younger back then and didn't have any health issues but it still made me cough, and I only had a small area to clear. It's possible that you've been inhaling dust.


I would go docs really might have fungus or spur chest infection.

If you have rash round neck like chain i would defo go doctors anyway to rule stuff out as cant be nice.


The blacking out issue was caused by Marlboro for me! A really strong cigarette and, quite soon after I changed to them the cough/blackout issues began. I discussed with GP and he said that, the cough caused a blood vessel to the brain to become trapped stopping the blood supply. This caused the brain to temporarily "shutdown" so the coughing stopped and released the blood vessel. The flow began again and I'd come round within seconds.

He shrugged his shoulders and said "Until you stop smoking, or at least change brands, then this is likely to continue!" - at the time I thought he was quite uncaring; with hindsight I was just a numpty!

So, hopefully this helps explain the blackouts, as to the cause (unless it's Marlboro) I'm afraid I can't help.

Best wishes

1 like

From personal experience - it can be caused by cough combined with stomach acid regurgitated/any reflux issues.medically it is deemed cough syncope, basically cough caused fainting! Don't know your circumstance but if there's a h.hernia it probably adds to the reflux.then again it could be just you are coughing so hard-if it's temporary(you say cough only been for 3 weeks) and you have no real lung/stomach issues then it will probably pass and nothing to be too concerned over. Be aware though if it occurs like you have said several times in a short period, then dvla should really be informed if you are a driver- that depends to a great degree on how your GP views things. It can mean the temporary withdrawal of driving licence until cause and treatment are identified and condition is under control. If it's just an infection and you are fit and well - it will pass soon and all is hunky dory!


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