However, when a cough becomes persistent, it can indicate an overreaction of the vocal folds, leading to a chronic condition that can be both physically distressing and mentally taxing. This constant irritation can create a cycle of coughing even when there's nothing to expel.

How do we diagnose chronic cough?

At Louisiana ENT Specialists, we take a comprehensive approach to diagnosing chronic cough. After an initial evaluation by our otolaryngologists (ENT), you may be referred to a pulmonologist or gastroenterologist to evaluate potential underlying causes related to the lungs or digestive system.

  • Physical examination: This includes a comprehensive review of your medical history and symptoms.
  • Lung function test: Also known as spirometry, this test measures how much air you can inhale and exhale and how quickly you empty air from your lungs.
  • Chest x-ray: This non-invasive test helps identify any abnormalities or diseases in your lungs that might be causing the cough.
  • CT scan: A CT scan provides a detailed image of your lungs and can detect conditions like infections or tumors.
  • Bronchoscopy: This procedure allows doctors to examine your airway through a thin viewing instrument called a bronchoscope.
  • Laryngoscopy: This involves examining the back of your throat, including your larynx, with a mirror or a laryngoscope.
  • Allergy tests: Skin or blood tests can determine whether allergies might be causing your chronic cough.
  • Acid reflux test: Also known as esophageal pH monitoring, this test measures the amount of acid that flows from the stomach to the esophagus to check for signs of acid reflux.
  • Sputum culture: This test is performed to detect and identify bacteria or fungi infecting the lungs or breathing passages.
Background media

What does treatment for chronic cough include?

Treatment for chronic cough at Louisiana ENT Specialists reflects the condition of the individual. We focus on identifying and managing the contributing factors with medication, lifestyle changes, or speech therapy if necessary. Our treatment team will work closely with you to control triggers for cough and develop an exercise program to give you better control over breathing, voice, and coughing episodes.

What causes a chronic cough?

Several factors can contribute to the development of a chronic cough, such as:

  • Postnasal drip: This occurs when excess mucus from your nose drips down the back of your throat, triggering a cough reflex.
  • Asthma: Often characterized by bouts of coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath, asthma can cause a persistent cough.
  • Allergies: Allergic reactions to substances like pollen, dust, or pet dander can cause a chronic cough.
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD): This digestive disorder occurs when stomach acid frequently flows back into your esophagus, causing irritation and a chronic cough.
  • Upper respiratory tract infections: Infections such as the common cold or flu can lead to a lingering cough even after other symptoms have resolved.
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD): This group of diseases, which includes bronchitis and emphysema, causes inflammation and blockage in the airways, leading to a chronic cough.
  • Pertussis (whooping cough): This highly contagious respiratory tract infection can result in severe coughing spells.
  • Air pollution: Exposure to pollutants in the air can irritate the lungs and throat, causing a chronic cough.
  • ACE inhibitors: These medications, commonly used to treat high blood pressure and heart conditions, can have a side effect of inducing a persistent cough.
  • Angiotensin Receptor Blockers (ARBs): Like ACE inhibitors, ARBs can also cause a chronic cough in some individuals.
  • Smoking: The inhalation of smoke irritates the airways and can lead to a long-term cough.
Background media

Who are the ideal candidates for chronic cough treatment?

A chronic cough, defined as a cough lasting eight weeks or longer, can be distressing and disruptive. It can be triggered by various factors such as medication side effects, lung issues like asthma or COPD, environmental allergies causing nose or sinus problems, gastroesophageal/laryngopharyngeal reflux, or swallowing disorders that lead to aspiration. If your persistent cough is affecting your daily life and activities, it's time to seek expert help.

Why choose Louisiana Ear, Nose, Throat & Sinus for your ENT needs?

At Louisiana ENT Specialists, we combine exceptional medical expertise with a patient-centered approach. We're proud of our team of over 25 physicians and specialists who bring their deep understanding of ear, nose, and throat health to each patient interaction.

We understand that convenience matters. That's why we offer easy access to our services across six locations in Louisiana, with more on the horizon. We also offer same-day appointments to accommodate busy schedules.

We have served Louisiana for over 45 years and deliver the full spectrum of ENT care under one roof. We are committed to helping you regain your quality of life. Choose Louisiana ENT Specialists for your chronic cough treatment and experience our unique blend of community care and global expertise.

With 6 convenient locations around the Louisiana area, we're never far away.

Find Your ENT Request Appointment
Contact us media
Accessibility: If you are vision-impaired or have some other impairment covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act or a similar law, and you wish to discuss potential accommodations related to using this website, please contact our Accessibility Manager at (225) 769-2222.

We are aware of an issue impacting AT&T wireless customer ability to make phone calls to our facilities. If you are unable to reach us, please use this phone number 786-348-2775. We are in touch with AT&T to resolve this issue.

You can request an appointment HERE.