Hi, it's been 6 months since I've posted & happy to say my partner is recovering really well, we are now 7 months post Ivor Lewis.

The only new ish problem he has is he is coughing when swallowing certain foods & also seems to cough throughout the night too. The cough seems to be tickly & dry.

His GP prescribed him a simple linctus to have prior to a meal to line his throat but that doesn't seem to have made much difference. Does or did anyone experience this dry coughing post op? Many thanks in advance.

16 Replies

  • Hi l had this problem and it was decided it was sensitive scar tissue. One thing I found helped me was an antihistamine. Not sure why it worked but it did. But the 'cough' is quite common and it really does get better. It is still early days for your partner so tell them to be gentle with themselves, it does get better - honest 😊


    Edwina x

  • That's reassuring, thanks for your reply x

  • Hi Edwina, 8 years this july,since my op. most of these worries come around

    now and again. sometimes they come back without warning but the days that are fine of which are many now. make you feel great to be Alive.

    Regards Tony.

  • I had exactly the same thing starting from the time of my operation up until a year later or so and it was caused by acid reflux Laura, so it might be worth looking into that.

    Kind regards


  • We seem to thInk the coughing he had at night is reflux related, he's all ready on lansoprazole BD & Peptac before bed & sleeping sat up so not sure what else we can try at the moment. We will mention it at our next appointment. Thanks for your reply!

  • You could try Gaviscon at night as an extra precaution, plus sleeping propped up. It might be acid/bile trickling up. Everything is a bit nearer the lungs than they used to be.

    Plus keep drinking and keep the mouth and throat moist with liquids / pastilles etc, and maintain the dental hygiene. I suspect that the saliva glands suffer a bit sometimes like the taste buds do, but they do recover by some mysterious process over time.

  • He's having Gaviscon at night all ready as well as raising the bed plus plenty of pillows so pretty much sleeps sitting up since the day of his op.

    He's took on some advice from the gp having warm juice & dissolvable paracetamol in it throughout the day which seems to be helping a little. Just the cough whilst eating which still remains but from the replies seems a common issue which will hopefully settle in time. Thanks for the reply & advice Alan.

  • Hi, 3 years last October since I had the surgery and still cough (most times) when I start to eat. Sometimes it continues throughout the meal which can be a bit embarrassing. I no longer sprinkle pepper on my food (really enjoyed this on my soups). I have not been able to isolate which foods affect me. Must depend on how my 'system' feels on the day! I also suspect that it is due to sensitive scar tissue, but not taken steps to have this confirmed. I can live with it!

    Good Luck

  • Thankyou! Sounds similar to my partner, he always coughs at the start of the meal & like you say, depending what it is he can cough the whole way through or it settles. Reassuring to know that other people have this too & he's not on his own. Thanks for the reply!

  • I ignored one of these nasty coughs around four months from my op, thinking that it was a side effect. I ended up with a few days in bed guzzling antibiotics. It may be a chest infection. Have you checked that out?

  • Hi, yes he's seen the Dr, he's not got a productive cough where anything is coming up & no temperature so we don't think it's infection related at present. Thankyou for your reply. Hope you're doing well.

  • Thanks Laura. Nearly 3 years post op and putting on weight and muscle. Eating well and feeling very lucky.

  • This seems to be a recurring issue with many people. As I've said before I could have coughed for England for the first 2/3 years after my op but it went. I remain sensitive to dust (good excuse to avoid housework!) but nothing like those early days. I personally found Strepsils quite helpful.

  • Hi Larat

    My wife had her op almost two years ago. She also had an incessant cough, felt like she coughed every 10 seconds. Thought it would never stop! But slowly it did. Took a good number of months to subside. My theory is that your lungs take a hammering during the op, my wife also had pneumonia, it all just takes time to heal and recover.

    My wife was also taking lisonopril for high blood pressure, that is a known cause of coughing. My wife was taken off that.

    Any way the cough eventually went.

    All good now.

    Good luck


  • Thanks Steve, hope your wife is recovering well.

    We shall continue to ride it out like everything else :-)

    Take care

  • I'm 18 months post op and have the same, pretty much all the time. Occasionally I have bad reflux during the night, which makes it worse the following few days. It improves if I get regular cardiovascular exercise but I travel a lot and that makes things quite difficult. I cannot jog as the impact hurts my ribs.

    I'm also concerned about this and wondering if continuous bouts of reflux and coughing can lead to other pulmonary complications.

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