Chronic Cough

Posted by Vickie @vikcha, Jun 23, 2017

I have had a chronic cough for about 17 years. It's gotten worse over time and for the past several years it has really adversely affected my life. I've spent literally thousands of dollars on gastroenterology, pulmonary, allergist, naturopathy, endoscopy, acupuncture.... all to no avail. Dr's consensus is that it's caused by reflux. Have been on ppi's for years, along with gaviscon. Have gotten as far as considering surgery (nissen fundiplication) but dr says there's only a 50-50 chance it would help. Does not seem like good odds for letting someone cut into my digestive system. Have tried cutting out coffee, dairy, wheat, alcohol: no help. Formerly a very active long-distance bike rider, I've had to pretty much stop cycling as it (and almost any form of exercise) makes me cough. As a result I've gained close to 30 pounds. SOOOOO frustrating!!!!!!!!!!! Any ideas much appreciated!

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@vikcha, Hi. My name is Diane. I too have GERD. I also have gastroparesis, hypothyroidism, and had a heart attck last September. I also have had a chronic cough for about 2 years. Sometimes i have a sore throat. Ive been taking ppi since the early 1980's starting wit Tagamet. Do you ever feel short of breath? Have you explored the possibility that your condition might be related to heart disease? My shortness of breath was telling for heart disease. I couldn't walk across my living room or vacuum without getting breathless.
If you haven't considered heart disease i strongly suggest you talk to your. Dr. sooner rather than later.m


I have a close friend who suffers from chronic cough and after a long time she went into the City and saw a pulmonologist who diagnosed her with TB.


Hi @vikcha,

Here's a discussion that you may wish to view; feel free to scroll through and tag members:
Acid Reflux and its Symptoms

I'd also like to invite @jbhmaine @cowboy1997 @lovefish @rlgfarms @sophiasmom @saucy and @masonmom, (who recently visited Mayo Clinic about chronic cough), to join this conversation as they may have more information and insight for you.
@kdubois, would you share your experience and thoughts about nissen fundoplication with Vickie?

@vikcha, a few medical journals have reported that chronic cough can be symptom of obstructive sleep apnea, (Cough,; have you been tested for this sleep disorder?


Hi @vikcha, this past October, I had a Nissen Fundoplication surgery performed at Mayo to fix my failing sphincter muscle, hiatal hernia, and GERD issues, and the GERD also caused me to have mild asthma and coughing. Since having the surgery, I experience no GERD at all, and I have very little shortness of breathe ornate occasions but I no longer have any coughing. This surgery has helped me significantly!

The reason we decided to do the Nissen was that I had been on Nexium (or it's generic equivalents) for 12 years, and Mayo figured out that I don't properly-metabolize PPIs due to genetic polymorphisms, and the PPIs I had been taking were actually making me sick in a variety of ways, including heavy weight gain. So since taking the PPIs wasn't an option, but not treating GERD is also not an option because esophageal issues can occur due to long-term acid exposure, we decided to do the surgery. One of the best decisions I ever made!

If you choose to do this surgery, just be sure to consult with an experienced thoracic surgeon who has done hundreds of these.

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