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COUGH after chemo and radiation therapy


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Hello --

Is there anyone out there that developed a DRY cough AFTER treatment?

I have had a cough now for 6 months. Pulmonary doctor tried everything --- even with Prednisone 60 mgs cough is still there.

I am having a Pet Scan and CT Scan this week. Could be a tumor, bronchioectasis, or pulmonary fibrosis.

Would appreciate hearing from others who developed a persistent dry cough after treatment of chemo and radiation ( for reassurance purposes).

Also -- does anyone know how Donna G's visit with Sloan Kettering went?

Thanks to all.

Carleen in New York

DX 7/02 Limited SCLC (hilar and mediastinum)

Remission 2/03 to present

COUGH

2 Rounds CPT11 & Cisplatin

2 Rounds VP16 & Cisplatin

2 more rounds in half doses due to platelets

35 radiation treatments to chest at 63 GCYs

PCI

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I coughed for ever! My Radiation Docs seemed to think this was normal & caused at least in part to irritation of the lungs from the high doses of radiation. I don't cough as much anymore, I still cough probably more then "normal" but a lot less then I was immediately after my last radiation treatment, occasionally I have fits of coughing but those are few & far between.

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I actually have NSCLC and don't usually venture into the SCLC section, but for some reason I did today and your post caught my eye!

I HAVE HAD AN ANNOYING DRY COUGH FOR MONTHS!!! IT DRIVES ME CRAZY!

I finished up chemo/radiation in mid-June. I started coughing around the end of July and still am. Since finishing treatment, I have had a PET Scan, a CT scan, an X-ray, I've taken a cough medicine w/ codine, my pulminary doc has prescribed an inhaler this week (which doesn't seem to be doing anything) and I am scheduled for a Broncoscopy tomorrow to see if there is an infection going on in there.......if not, then it is on to the Presnisone......my radiation oncologist seems to think that it is still just residual effects from radiation treatment, but I have heard a rumor that those radiation oncologist don't like to diagnose radiation pnemonitis -- that would actually be admitting that they caused it! :wink:

As much as I would really like to determine the cause of this cough, if it is in fact just residual effects from radiation, I can live with that -- it beats the alternative!!!!!!

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I have been coughing for the better part of the last year. Right after my diagnosis, I quit for a few weeks, until I had surgery and it became painful to cough. Since the end of chemo and radiation, I have had a constant cough. Every now and then it is wet, but usually it is just the dry itchy kind. I have been diagnosed with radiation pneumonitis. I take 20 mg of prednisone every day and cough medicine every day, and I still cough. As soon as I get the lest bit out of breath, the coughing starts. I don't know when or if I'll ever stop coughing, so I guess all I can say is you aren't alone in dry cough land.

Becky

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I have been coughing for the better part of the last year. Right after my diagnosis, I quit for a few weeks, until I had surgery and it became painful to cough. Since the end of chemo and radiation, I have had a constant cough. Every now and then it is wet, but usually it is just the dry itchy kind. I have been diagnosed with radiation pneumonitis. I take 20 mg of prednisone every day and cough medicine every day, and I still cough. As soon as I get the lest bit out of breath, the coughing starts. I don't know when or if I'll ever stop coughing, so I guess all I can say is you aren't alone in dry cough land.

Becky

Thats usually when I have my worst coughing fits, is it I get out of breath, I guess though I've been pretty lucky because otherwise the cough doesn't really bother me too much anymore.

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My cough was what brought me to the doctor before my diagnosis. I had the flu and it went away but I was left with this dry cough, never had a cough all that years that I smoked, go figure. Since my diagnosis and chemo I still have the damn cough, it has gotten much less than it was thank God but I still have it a little, drives you crazy but the oncologist does not seem alarmed by it, she says its is much better and it is. I haven't taken anything for it but over the counter cough medicine which does help but I try not to take it too often.

Bess B

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My Dad has dry cough as well now, especially every evening the cough happens more frequent. Dad has asked the oncologist about the dry cough and asked if X-ray should be done for that dry cough. The answer was "NO NEED", the oncologist changed the type of drinking medicine, my Dad told me this medicine makes him cough less and feels better.

My Dad thinks the dry cough is caused by the radiation. He thinks that the lung becomes more thinner after chest radiation that it is irritated by anything easier than before. He thinks his lung becomes more sensitive than ever before..

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Speaking for Dave, he finished chemo and lung radiation months ago, but has a persistent cough, I guess it's a dry cough. He had some pneumonia after the radiation and a recent CT scan shows what looks like scarring which is probably causing it.

He's getting another CT Scan and a PET Scan in the upcoming couple of weeks so we'll see, but I suspect it's pretty common after all that bombardment to the lungs.

Karen C.

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  • 1 month later...

I know this post has been here awhile but I just got to read it. I have had a dry cough since I finished radiation also. It seems to get worse if I bend over or if I lay a certain way at night. I asked my Dr. about it after my last scan and he said I do have some fluid on my right lung. He said it is very common after radiation and it should start to clear up on it's own. I sure hope so because it can be pretty annoying. Then again, if that is the worst of it, I think I can learn to LIVE with it.

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MO_Sugar, Darrell also has a dry cough and his has just started getting worse when he bends over, or breaths deeply. Anyway he called the radiation oncologist and we are going tomorrow to see him.. Just to make sure nothing else is going on.. He also on his last ct scan had a new pleural effusion.. So wanted to make sure symptoms wasn't something to worry about... I'm gonna send him this post on dry coughs... I found this by doing a search on dry coughs.. He doesn't get on this site, but I send him stuff when I think its something he'll find interesting or that relates to things he is going through... Good luck..

Christy

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