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Dr. D. Evans
Dr. D. Evans, Doctor (MD)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 4464
Experience:  MS in ENT and Head and Neck Surgery , Attachment to Neurosurgery.
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I am experiencing coughing and dry heaves. What should I do?

Resolved Question:

I am experiencing coughing and dry heaves; I am keeping a journal now for the past week to determine the cause. I was abusing laxatives for weight loss for a long time but recently stopped at the advice of my doctor. I told her about the heaving but failed to mention the coughing. A friend told me the hacking dry cough followed by the heaves could be significant. I cannot get in to my doctor until May 9. It seems as if the symptoms have improved but usually come in the morning, oftentimes after a bowel movement but not always. I am concerned about cancer or other issues. I have gained weight rapidly in the past 6 months and cannot get it off primarily in the abdomen.

Thank you

Submitted: 10 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Dr. D. Evans replied 10 years ago.

Since you are online, could you please give some more information:
Do you have any sputum with the cough?
Any pain in the chest while coughing?

Any pain in the throat?

Customer: replied 10 years ago.

It is a dry hacking cough and only once did anything come up and then it wasn't vomit but clear liquid, quite a lot but I have a fairly violent attack of coughing and I had just had lunch. I did not vomit at that time and don't vomit, I just feel like it. No chest pain or throat pain at all.

Expert:  Dr. D. Evans replied 10 years ago.

This does not seem like a serious cough at all, but more a viral or allergic cough.
You should not go on to think about cancers, it is likely to get well with simple medications. I would suggest the following OTC medicines for you:
Antihistamines - Alavert 10 mg once daily (OTC)

Another important home treatment is Menthol steam inhalation - add Menthol salts (available OTC) to a bowl of steaming water and inhale the steam two - three times daily - this will relieve the heaving.

OTC antitussives: Brand names - Triaminic Cold & Cough, Robitussin Maximum Strength, Vicks 44 Cough Relief.
Logenges: such Vicks cough logenges or any hard sweets constantly, this will cause a constant flow of saliva and give you relief.

I hope this answer was helpful. If you need more information, feel free to ask.

Customer: replied 10 years ago.

Thank you for the information, my mind did start to go crazy. I have experienced allergies in Fla, I play golf and usually have a runny nose when I hit the course but I don't cough too much. I usually take a benadryl before I go. I am concerned about the heaving. When I cough it sounds like I am going to cough my lung out and then the heaving; I try to get away from anyone who would hear me as they might think I was vomiting and it sure feels like I will. Things seem to get better as the day wears on but even now I have a mild sensation of cough and a heave; maybe I am just anticipating the worst or thinking about it too much. Does this change anything?

Thank you

Expert:  Dr. D. Evans replied 10 years ago.

No, on the other hand it makes me think of allergies even more. Allergic cough is typically dry and heaving, and very much like what you describe. You should try the course I outlined for you, maybe you will get all right even before your doctor's appointment.

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