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Doctor insights on: Cough Syncope

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Cough Syncope (Overview)

Some people are susceptible to changes in their blood pressure when they change position, move their head suddenly, or cough. The resultant fall of blood pressure leads to decrease blood flow to the brain. Your brain's idea of a solution to this problem is to make you faint. Now that your head is at the same level as your heart, the problem is solved. A true solution is more complicated.


Dr. E. rawson Griffin iii Dr. Griffin iii
Family Medicine
39 years in practice
Medical University of South Carolina College of Medicine
1

1
What is cough syncope?

What is cough syncope?

Yes: Cough syncope is passing out in relation to coughing. It is caused by a drop in blood pressure which is caused by the cough stimulating the vagus nerve which leads to the loss in blood pressure. It is the same mechanism as the common "fainting spell" some people have. ...Read more

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Cough Syncope (Overview)

Some people are susceptible to changes in their blood pressure when they change position, move their head suddenly, or cough. The resultant fall of blood pressure leads to decrease blood flow to the brain. Your brain's idea of a solution to this problem is to make you faint. Now that your head is at the same level as your heart, the problem is solved. A true solution is more complicated.


Dr. Andrew Murphy Dr. Murphy
Internal Medicine - Allergy & Immunology
25 years in practice
Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine
2

2
What is best treatment for cough syncope besides quitting smoking?

What is best treatment for cough syncope besides quitting smoking?

See Doctor: Cough can have many causes and should be evaluated by your Doctor in order to determine the right treatment course. Stopping smoking would be appropriate. ...Read more

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Dr. Benjamin Lerner Dr. Lerner
Surgery - Vascular
15 years in practice
Medical College of Wisconsin
3

3
Managing Micturition Syncope (Checklist)

Try and stay well hydrated
once
Particularly for men, try sitting while urinating
Once
Recognize the signs, and sit down if you feel light headed
Once
Dr. Pedro Hernandez Dr. Hernandez
Internal Medicine - Geriatrics
36 years in practice
University of Costa Rica Faculty of Medicine
4

4
Is there a cure for cough syncope?

Is there a cure for cough syncope?

Yes: Stop the cough with strong cough suppressants. Evaluate pt. Why he/she coughs. ...Read more

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Dr. Ryan Phasouk Dr. Phasouk
Family Medicine
14 years in practice
St. George's University School of Medicine
6

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Treating a Cough (Checklist)

Try over-the-counter cough medications at the start of a cough
Daily
If the coughing persists or worsens, see a doctor promptly
Daily
If you have chest pain or shortness of breath with cough, see a doctor
Once
Dr. Douglas Arenberg Dr. Arenberg
Internal Medicine - Pulmonary Critical Care
27 years in practice
University of Illinois College of Medicine
7

7
Are there some genetic reasons I get cough syncope off and on?

Are there some genetic reasons I get cough syncope off and on?

Not yet, but...: I'm not aware of a genetic linkage for cough syncope. That doesn't mean it doesn't exist, just that its not strong enough to appear on current genome-wide association studies, or other linkage analyses. Single gene diseases are the easiest to track and link to a gene. Most complex diseases (like cough syncope) are caused by multiple interacting genes, and are therefore very hard to characterize. ...Read more

Dr. Michael Zacharisen Dr. Zacharisen
Internal Medicine - Allergy & Immunology
29 years in practice
Medical College of Wisconsin
8

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Can you ever cough so hard you feel like passing out?

Can you ever cough so hard you feel like passing out?

Yes: Coughing is spasms can lead to hyperventilation and near syncope (passing out). I had a patient do this at home, church and even in the urgent care. Very scary, but treatment lead to good outcome. ...Read more

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Dr. John Munshower Dr. Munshower
Family Medicine
26 years in practice
Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine - Georgia Campus
9

9
Treating Whooping Cough (Checklist)

Control the cough with medications and keep hydrated
Once
Finish all antibiotics, even if the patient is improving or better
Once
Assure all immunizations are up to date, and avoid newborns when sick
Once
Dr. E. rawson Griffin iii Dr. Griffin iii
Family Medicine
39 years in practice
Medical University of South Carolina College of Medicine
10

10
What is cough syncope?

Yes: Cough syncope is passing out in relation to coughing. It is caused by a drop in blood pressure which is caused by the cough stimulating the vagus nerve which leads to the loss in blood pressure. It is the same mechanism as the common "fainting spell" some people have. ...Read more

See 1 more doctor answer
Dr. Kevin Lingle Dr. Lingle
Internal Medicine - Cardiology
11 years in practice
University of North Carolina School of Medicine
11

11
Can you die from cough syncope?

Can you die from cough syncope?

Unlikely: It would be very rare but possible if you past out and fell injuring your head. ...Read more

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Dr. Ryan Cooley Dr. Cooley
Internal Medicine - Cardiology
25 years in practice
University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health
12

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What sort of disorder is cough syncope?

What sort of disorder is cough syncope?

Neurocardiogenic: Coughing can stimulate nerves in the throat that cause a vasovagal response. This vasovagal response results in a drop in blood pressure which can lead to dizziness or even fainting. Treatment is directed at cough prevention. ...Read more

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Dr. Luis Villaplana Dr. Villaplana
Internal Medicine
31 years in practice
Ponce School of Medicine
13
Dr. Irv Loh Dr. Loh
Internal Medicine - Cardiology
45 years in practice
UC San Francisco School of Medicine
14

14
Do lots of people get cough syncope, or is it unusual?

Do lots of people get cough syncope, or is it unusual?

Not uncommon: Violent coughing can trigger cardio-depressive reflexes that can functionally slow the heart rate, but also because of the high pressures in the chest cavity produced by the fits of coughing, impair blood return to the heart. All this can combine to drop th cardiac output and blood pressure, resulting in faintness or overt (but very transient) loss of consciousness. ...Read more

Dr. Robert Golenbock Dr. Golenbock
Pediatrics
45 years in practice
Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University
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What is the definition or description of: cough syncope?

What is the definition or description of: cough syncope?

Fainting with cough: Some people are susceptible to changes in their blood pressure when they change position, move their head suddenly, or cough. The resultant fall of blood pressure leads to decrease blood flow to the brain. Your brain's idea of a solution to this problem is to make you faint. Now that your head is at the same level as your heart, the problem is solved. A true solution is more complicated. ...Read more

See 1 more doctor answer
Dr. Pedro Hernandez Dr. Hernandez
Internal Medicine - Geriatrics
36 years in practice
University of Costa Rica Faculty of Medicine
17

17
Is there a cure for cough syncope?

Yes: Stop the cough with strong cough suppressants. Evaluate pt. Why he/she coughs. ...Read more

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Dr. Barton Cook Dr. Cook
Pediatrics - Cardiology
27 years in practice
University of South Alabama College of Medicine
18

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Can you get a cough syncope while you sleep?

Can you get a cough syncope while you sleep?

Interesting: You can certainly become bradycardic (low heart rate) with cough, sleeping or not. You would not be aware of it if you were sleeping. If you are experiencing sleep problems, a sleep medicine specialist may help. A sleep study may be helpful. ...Read more

Dr. Douglas Arenberg Dr. Arenberg
Internal Medicine - Pulmonary Critical Care
27 years in practice
University of Illinois College of Medicine
19

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Do people with cough syncope have a lot of pain?

Do people with cough syncope have a lot of pain?

Usually not: Unless you break a bone when you pass out. Actually the cough that leads to syncope is usually a powerful cough and that can result in pain, but the syndrome itself is not associated with pain. ...Read more

Dr. Hesham Hassaballa Dr. Hassaballa
Internal Medicine - Pulmonary Critical Care
18 years in practice
Rush Medical College
20

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My doctors says I have cough syncope? What is this and will it go away?

My doctors says I have cough syncope? What is this and will it go away?

Too much pressure: Cough syncope is a condition where you pass out after a coughing spell. Many times this is due to simply being dehydrated. The reason this can happen is this: when you cough, you generate a lot of pressure in the chest. This can compress the veins leading to your heart, which then supply the rest of the body. If you are dehydrated, the veins can more easily collapse, causing the fainting. ...Read more

Dr. Sue Ferranti
3,550 doctors shared insights

Cough (Definition)

The cough reflex is a protective mechanism that uses muscles in your throat and chest to expel mucous and saliva that may contain pathogens that would otherwise possibly be inhaled via aerosol or to expel pathogens infecting the throat and respiratory system. Cough benefits the host by reducing load and benefits the pathogen which may then spread via aerosol. ...Read more


Dr. Rajiva Goyal
1,194 doctors shared insights

Syncope (Definition)

Loss of consciousness and postural tone caused by diminished cerebral blood flow. Syncope may indicate a particular medical condition, however often it may occur in an otherwise healthy individual. It is a common problem, accounting for 3% ...Read more