Pulmonary fibrosis (PF) is a chronic lung condition where the tissue fibers in the lungs become scarred. There are a few specific symptoms associated with the disease: shortness of breath, fatigue, clubbing of fingers, and a dry, persistent cough.
A cough is considered persistent when it carries on for more than a month. Coughing is the body’s natural reflex to help loosen mucus from the lungs but in pulmonary fibrosis, the cough is dry so is not due to an excess of mucus but due to progressive scarring of the lungs. It can also occur due to other symptoms of pulmonary fibrosis including a post-nasal drip or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).
As pulmonary fibrosis is a progressive disease, patients will find that their coughing continually worsens over time. Typically, coughing in PF patients is treated with over-the-counter medications which help to soothe the throat if it becomes irritated by coughing and to suppress the cough reflex. Find out more about coughing in pulmonary fibrosis here.
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