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British Lung Foundation
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Persistent cough after childhood pneumonia

My partner, 18 now, mentioned he had pneumonia as a child and recovered. He now links that to his current cough.

We've been dating for 9 months, and he began coughing around the 5 month mark.

He says the cough comes and goes, sometimes it stays for weeks, sometimes months, sometimes he doesn't have a cough at all. I've seen some pretty bad coughing fits, it sounds very dry and like it's from deep in his lungs.

He mentioned his doctor once told him he had slight lung scarring, but I don't have anymore information than that.

He's around 6ft, weighs the same as I do (69kg), and doesn't eat much meat (around 20% meat to 80% vegetables/fruit).

I'm recommending we go back to see his doctor for advice, but I was wondering if there was anyway to alleviate his coughs. He likes to use, I'm not sure, organic(?) or 'alternative' products (I've recently purchased him some Eucalyptus oil for steaming like my grandmother used to do for my colds/asthma), but I'm adamant that if it's in any way serious I'm taking him to get medical help immediately.

Thanks for reading xx Hope there's a way to help him.

6 Replies
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Hello afost99 .

This must be extremely worrying for the both of you. Any mysterious cough should be investigated thoroughly. The best advice I can give is to see a specialist, if possible. He will need various tests as the cough appears to be chronic and unexplained. Out of curiosity, is the cough productive or dry?

I'm sorry I can't give any advice about soothing the cough apart from sucking on strong mints, like Fisherman's Friend. That's the only thing that takes away my tickly throat when I have one.

I really hope you get answers to his condition. Take care of yourselves.

Warm wishes,

Cas xx 🌸

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Thank you, Caspiana. As far as I know, he doesn't create any sputum. Very dry, very rough sounding. Sometimes I worry that he's going to tear something! But not often. We drink a lot of teas, and I make a mean lemon and honey, but I just worry.

I booked into my GP to ask about it.

Thank you for the concern xx

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Hang in there. xx 🌿

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Hi afost99, it’s clear you care very much for your partner and that’s great. I would definitely recommend medical intervention to determine whats going on.

Some people use honey to relieve a cough with lemon in a hot drink and that may help a little.

Wishing you and your partner well. Xxxxx

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Thank you. Anything to relieve his cough. I've asked around but no one's had a suggestion as to what's causing it, so GP it is. I've been making enough lemon and honey to come out my ears haha, but it seems to be working, if for a short while.

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Hi one of my sisters (doesn't have any health issues) had a dry cough for years which got bad enough to interfere with her life. She went to the doctors who totally ignored it and fobbed her off.

She had heard that dairy foods could cause this so cut out the whole food group and re-introduced items one by one. She found she was intolerant to cows milk and ice cream. As soon as she stopped eating those her cough went completely. One day we were out having a coffee and it returned, then she realised she had put milk in her coffee!

I recommend your partner tries this. Obviously go to the doctors first to make sure it is nothing serious. x

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