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4-month Persistent cough, plus constant clear phlegm

Hi, back in mid-April I got a nasty cold after staying in a New Jersey hotel room for 2 days.

I had fever of like 101-102, plus cough, yellow-green phlegm and runny nose. However I got better after 2-3 days, so I never saw a doctor or took any pills besides Tylenol for symptoms.

The problem is, a dry cough has stayed with me ever since this cold. It's an unproductive cough, usually it's like a single cough after talking a lot. If I don't talk much I hardly ever cough.

Another symptom is constant mucous (phlegm) in my throat, this has lasted ever since the cold as well. I feel a lump of phlegm in the back of my throat whenever I swallow. Sometimes it feels thick enough that I bring it out of my throat and spit it out. When spit out, the phlegm is typically clear or white.

Finally I saw my primary care about 3 weeks ago. He said I have a post-nasal drip, and that I should have seen him when I first had the cold. He prescribed a 5-day dose of Zepac (azithromycin), an anti-biotic. About two days into this course of Zepac, I felt a slight soreness in my throat (the kind you feel before you get strep or a cold) that got worse for a day, then disappeared. This soreness was accompanied by a few productive coughs, which brought up yellow-green phlegm.

After I finished the Zepac, the phlegm resumed being clear/white. It is now two weeks after I finished the Zepac, the cough continues and so does the phlegm.

So I go and see an ENT, who does a laryngoscopy, throat culture and chest X-ray. All normal he said, although the laryngoscopy revealed "a little redness in the throa." He believes it could be acid reflux from stress, and told me to take Prilosec Over-the-Counter (OTC). I have been taking Prilosec for 5 days now without seeing any effect. The ENT told me he doesnt believe this is serious, and that this will self-resolve, though no idea how long it will take.

Oddly last night I felt a soreness in my throat again, it was NOT the same type of soreness. It was like a soreness as if I had been struck in the throat. It has lasted a day and is now almost gone. No change in phlegm color or anything accompanied this soreness.

In the interest of full disclosure I have also been worrying about a potential HIV risk (see this post http://www.medhelp.org/posts/show/579528), and paranoia keeps making me think this cough is somehow a symptom. Of course I have had the cough well before the HIV-scare, but still. I also am dealing with some type of penile fungal infection (http://www.medhelp.org/posts/show/582451) that my urologist believes was sexually transmitted.

So you can see why i'm worked about this long-lasting cough as well. Any ideas or thoughts or similar experiences?
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Avatar universal
I too have severe coughing for 4 months.
It started in November when I got really sick. I could not eat, sleep, or even move. I also got my boyfriend sick. He got better after a week, and I felt better but my cough never went away. I thought maybe it was just taking a little longer for me to get all better. I have not gone to the doctor in hopes that it was just going to go away. It's getting less frequent as time goes by. Now I have phlem all day when I talk. At night and in the morning is when it gets really bad. It feels like phlem is tikkling the bottom of my throat and I have to cough it out or not it just collects more phlem and I feal like my throat will close up. I dont like swallowing my phlem because I feal that you just keep the virus in you, and I have a minor gagging reflex when I swallow something thats gross. Therefore I stand up every minute to spit, or I take a whole bunch of tissue with me to bed so I can spit in it and throw it out. I have a boyfriend and he is fine now. He has been fine since he recovered 3 or so months ago. Its not cute for a woman to constantly spit or have phlem come out when youre having a serious conversation with anyone.
I've taken my HIV, AIDS, and full disease test, and I passed with flying colors. So I dont think it has to do with that. I dont know what it is and im starting to think maybe this is something that is NEVER going away.
My next step is quitting smoking. I stopped when I got sick in November, and started again in January. I've had it throughout the whole time. It is now February 25th, and I still have it.
If quitting smoking doesnt help, than I will have to go see a doctor. Even though I dont have health insurance and im broke.
What can it be?
I just got a job as a waitress, where my job is to talk to people while they're eating. How discusted would someone be when their waitress is having phlem come out as theyre eating and hearing the specials.
Could it have anything to do with the H1N1 Virus????? It started around that time... When will it go away, if ever???
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Avatar universal
I had a cough about 8 years ago. & it never went away. at one point in the years I had these little hard yellowish things that would come out of my mouth from the back of my throat. I cough up phlem every day. Sometimes its clear, sometimes its milky, somethimes yellow or green. I never really get sick. in the past 8 years I had a upper respatory infection once. but then I find usually once in the begining of fall and the begining of spring I get chest pain, coughing worst & it feels like I can feel the phlem in my chest then I cough it up. I had blood test, which are fine. & I had an EKG & an echocardiogram.
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