Factors That Cause Chronic Cough


📩 21/09/2023 11:55

Acıbadem Bakırköy Hospital Chest Diseases Specialist Dr. Süha Alzafer explained the factors that cause chronic cough; He made important suggestions and warnings.


Stating that the main causes of chronic cough are smoking and exposure to smoke, Acıbadem Bakırköy Hospital Chest Diseases Specialist Dr. Süha Alzafer said, “So much so that the rate of chronic cough in smokers is 3 times higher than in people who have never smoked or have quit smoking. The reason why smoking causes chronic cough is that it irritates the respiratory tract. However, cough can also be caused by serious health problems such as lung cancer and chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases. "If smokers think that their cough is caused by smoking, this may lead to a delay in the diagnosis of important underlying diseases." he said.


Dr. Süha Alzafer: “Asthma is among the first causes of chronic cough complaints.” he said and continued as follows: "According to the studies carried out; Asthma begins with a single symptom of cough in 100 out of every 57 patients. It usually wakes you up at night or develops towards the morning. “Complaints such as shortness of breath and wheezing may also be observed.”

Gastroesophageal reflux

Gastroesophageal reflux is defined as the backflow of stomach contents into the esophagus due to looseness in the area between the esophagus and stomach, said Dr. Süha Alzafer stated that chronic cough occurs as a result of acidic content causing irritation in the vocal cords and food crumbs involuntarily entering the lungs.


Dr. stated that postnasal drip occurring in sinusitis can often cause chronic cough because some inflammatory substances in postnasal drip can irritate the throat and trigger cough, and that chronic cough caused by postnasal drip usually increases when you sleep at night. Süha Alzafer pointed out that it is often not possible to cope with a cough without the postnasal drip passing and said, "Therefore, it may be necessary to use medications for a long time in chronic cough that develops due to postnasal drip." said.


Dr. says that chronic cough can be a sign of bronchiectasis, which is a disease characterized by the expansion and deformation of the bronchi after previous pneumonia infections. Süha Alzafer stated that in this disease, in addition to chronic cough, there is also the problem of constantly and abundantly producing sputum, and said, “In addition, life-threatening bloody sputum may be observed from time to time. "The complaint of cough increases, especially when infection is added to this picture." he said.


Dr. Süha Alzafer said, “Bronchitis is divided into two groups: acute and chronic bronchitis. Chronic cough mostly develops due to chronic bronchitis and is often seen in smokers. Cough and sputum complaints that continue for at least three months, especially in autumn and winter, can be a sign of chronic bronchitis. "In acute bronchitis, the cough usually passes within days and does not lead to chronic cough." he said.


Dr. Süha Alzafer said, “Cough can last for weeks after upper respiratory tract infections such as cold, flu and Covid-19, which are common in autumn and winter, have passed. "If there is an allergic body on the floor, the likelihood of the cough prolonging increases." said.


Pointing out that chronic cough can also be a symptom of tuberculosis, which mostly affects the lungs, Dr. Süha Alzafer: "Chronic cough caused by tuberculosis can be accompanied by bloody sputum, weight loss, loss of appetite and night sweats." said. Alzafer stated that the diagnosis should be made as soon as possible in patients with chronic cough due to tuberculosis and said, "In this way, the risk of both spreading the disease throughout the body and infecting other people in the society is reduced." he warned.


Stating that upper respiratory tract and lung cancers are among the important diseases that cause chronic cough, Dr. emphasized that especially patients over the age of 40 and smokers should consult a physician for coughs of unknown origin and gradually increasing. Süha Alzafer: "Prolonged cough may be accompanied by symptoms such as bloody sputum, chest or back pain, loss of appetite and weight loss." said.

Interstitial lung disease

Dr. Süha Alzafer said, “In this large group of diseases, also defined as 'diffuse parenchymal' lung disease in new medical terminology, the lungs harden with the formation of connective tissue, almost like a crust forming while the wound on the skin is healing. "When there is not enough oxygen and carbon dioxide exchange in the body, patients may develop chronic cough and shortness of breath that increases with movement." he said.

Heart failure

Pointing out that heart failure can also be a cause of chronic cough, Dr. Süha Alzafer said, “In this disease, blood collects in the lungs because the heart cannot pump enough blood to meet our body's needs. Our body tries to cough up this blood accumulated in the lungs. Chronic cough, which develops especially after going to bed at night, gets better when standing up or sitting down, and is sometimes accompanied by wheezing and pink sputum, may indicate heart failure.” He made a statement.

the stopper

Dr. Süha Alzafer said, “Since the ears are areas where the cough reflex is stimulated, earwax, that is, earwax, can sometimes cause chronic cough. "The cough usually goes away after the earwax is removed." said.