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Dr. Rick, MD
Dr. Rick, MD, Board Certified MD
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 11241
Experience:  20+ years as a doctor. Internal Medicine Internship in NYC
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for the last 8 days, i have had a persistent dry cough, i am

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for the last 8 days, i have had a persistent dry cough, i am exhausted, my body aches, in particular my neck glands are a little sore. very occasionally i bring up a tiny amount of white/clear sputum, but that's it. i have no fever, no cold, no chest congestion. i originally thought it was a 24 - 48 hour virus, but it has not improved at all. what is it likely to be and what is the remedy? i am a fit and otherwise helathy [non-smoking] 57 year old female. also, no vomiting or headache - decreased appetite though.

RickMD :

I am online and happy to help you with your question today.

RickMD :

Do you have any medical problems or take any medications?

RickMD :

Has anyone near you been sick recently?

RickMD :

We have been experiencing problems with the chat system for the last few days. Our engineers are working on it. However, I'll switch over to the Q&A system. This system works a lot like 'text messaging' but an email is sent to each of us anytime something is posted to this thread. We can continue to work on your question there..... :)

We have been experiencing technical difficulties with the chat system. Please allow me to retype my chat here for your review:

RickMD : I am online and happy to help you with your question today.
RickMD : Do you have any medical problems or take any medications?
RickMD : Has anyone near you been sick recently?

I look forward to your reply.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

no-one near me has been sick; i do take some supplements, but no medication

Hi Gillian,

Sorry about the chat system freezing up on us. But, just as an aside, by pressing the "bad" feedback button you have left a dark stain on my quality report for this site. :(

Hopefully, when we are done discussing your issue you will be willing to give me good ( I prefer excellent) feedback so that this black mark can be removed.

Just a couple more questions, if you don't mind:

Do you smoke?

Has this been getting better, worse or staying the same over the last few days?

Has anything you tried at home (tylenol, humidifier etc) helped at all?

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

never smoked, also i am a healthy weight, the condition seems to be the same, although my body is aching more, and i have notice my neck glands to be a little sorer, and no, i don't think the cough medicine has helped at all.


Ok. Well, from what you have posted it does sound like you have a viral syndrome, most likely the flu -- which has started show up around the country.

It is possible that you now, however, have a secondary bronchitis. Since none of the things you have done at home are helping I think it is time, especially with the weekend rapidly approaching, for you to let a doctor examine you.

At the very least she will be able to suppress your cough and give you medication to make you feel better while at the same time making sure you don't have anything else going on.

I will tell you, however, that some people are taking up to a month to get over this years flu is a nasty one :(

Does this answer your question to your satisfaction?

I hope this information was helpful for you. But I do work for tips so I want to make sure you are happy with me before rating me. If you have another question on this or a related issue feel free to fire away. And please let me know if the rating system gives you any troubles.

Thanks in advance,

Dr. Rick
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

so, i could have the flu, even though i have a flu injection every year without fail [ever since i turned 50]?

Yes. I also get the flu shot every year and two years ago I could not operate for almost 3 weeks from catching the flu.

The shot doesn't cover every single flu bug out there, just the most likely ones the CDC thinks is going to be a problem. Also, even if the shot does cover the bug you are exposed to sometime you get infected anyway.

From what you have posted the most likely cause for your symptoms is an extended viral infection -- most likely the flu -- with possible secondary issues.

Does this make sense to you?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

thank you, XXXXX XXXXX! great xmas present to myself! i NEVER get sick, so it is really frustrating me! and yes, i will get to a doctor, we have a very good after hours surgery here that operates from 7pm fridays to 7pm sundays.....:)

My pleasure :)

It's safe for you to press the positive feedback button now if you so desire. And, never fear, even after you press that button I don't go up in a puff of smoke -- I'll still be right here to continue helping you, but, as I do work for tips, I want to make sure you are happy before rating me.
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