PSP Association

Coughing and coughing

Mom is having a rough night...she wasn't hungry all day and literally choked down a few bites of roasted potatoes and carrots for dinner. Apparently she had inhaled something from dinner and is just coughing and coughing...every so often she will cough up some phlegm. I asked her if she wanted to go to the hospital and she refuses. So here we sit. It breaks my heart to hear her struggle. I hate psp!!!

4 Replies

I would guess you are right and that she has inhaled something. Has she had difficulty swallowing before? If so, for how long?

Try sitting her up higher. If she is able to cough it up, it might help her.

Otherwise I imagine she will need to see a doctor/hospital for assessment to see if there infection there and need an antibiotic. At same time check how good her swallowing is.

When pneumonia is present, and in right lung only, it is direct result of inhaling something, be it water, phlegm or food. If you search on this site for 'aspiration pneumonia', you will get plenty of feedback.

Don't be too alarmed at what you find! It can be overcome with antibiotics in some cases. However, each time it seems to weaken the patient.

I have nursed CBD not PSP, and though problems are similar, PSP suffers seem to manage better. As long as they don't have ongoing swallowing difficulties.

So you probably need to persuade your mum to see a doctor asap, to check for infection and to see how good her swallow is.

Good luck and gentle persuasion!!

Hugs. It its a hard road!!



I would recommend taking her to a doctor - it might be the onset of an infection and only a dose of anti-biotics helps if it's an infection

1 like

I'm so sorry . It's been 4 hours, so she may be sleeping....I do not know how dangerous it is to the whole function of aspiring except to contract pneumonia...but you might watch her throughout the night to make sure she is breathing well.

Good luck God speed


1 like

I agree with all replies, hope the cough has cleared. I hope no pneumonia found. I take it that she can usually eat/swallow with only a little difficulty.

Have you discussed with your mum about indirect feeding via a PEG for the future as it does seem from experience and reading other posts that swallow function can deteriorate from occasional chokes on puréed food to constant chokes very quickly. As with all PSP steps, it is best to discuss and agree with sufferers before loss of function and speech.

The idea of indirect feeding can be daunting and you both need to be informed and agree the procedure, it stops the choking ensures hydration and nutrition, thus making life easier for the sufferer, but it does extend life even as other facilities disappear. Indirect feeding can improve quality of life for a while but does not stop other later stage PSP problems.

Again hope your mum better. Best wishes Tim


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