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Doctor insights on: Coughing Up Dark Green

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Dr. David Martin Dr. Martin
ENT - Head & Neck Surgery
24 years in practice
New York University School of Medicine
1

1
Why do I cough up dark green almost black mucus?

Why do I cough up dark green almost black mucus?

Cough: It depends where the mucous is coming from. It can be from the lungs or sinuses. See your doctor to be evaluated.

Dr. Sue Ferranti
3,562 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. Heidi Fowler Dr. Fowler
Psychiatry
21 years in practice
Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences F. Edward Hebert School of Medicine
2
Dr. Patrick Connerly Dr. Connerly
Family Medicine
45 years in practice
Indiana University School of Medicine
3
Dr. John Munshower Dr. Munshower
Family Medicine
26 years in practice
Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine - Georgia Campus
4

4
My husband has a had a wet cough for about a week. No previous cold or flu. He's now coughing up very dark green phlegm. What could be the cause?

My husband has a had a wet cough for about a week. No previous cold or flu. He's now coughing up very dark green phlegm. What could be the cause?

Infection: Viral infections are common and usually go away in time. When the symptoms persist and the color of mucus changes form clear/yellow to dark green/brown, etc. It could signify the condition is caused by a bacterial infection and your husband may need to see a dr. For definitive diagnosis and treatment with antibiotics. Best wishes.

Dr. Oscar Novick Dr. Novick
Pediatrics
54 years in practice
University of Bern Faculty of Medicine
5
Dr. Diane Minich Dr. Minich
Family Medicine
33 years in practice
University of Toledo College of Medicine
6
Dr. Lori Semel Dr. Semel
Pediatrics
31 years in practice
Ross University School of Medicine
8

8
I have sharp chest pain each time I cough, plus I bring up dark green mucas. I have a constant headache and all my muscles hurt?

I have sharp chest pain each time I cough, plus I bring up dark green mucas. I have a constant headache and all my muscles hurt?

Cough: Sounds like you might have bronchitis or pneumonia. You don't mention if you have a fever. Good idea to be seen by your doctor.

Dr. Sheila Calderon Dr. Calderon
Internal Medicine
37 years in practice
Meharry Medical College School of Medicine
9

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My nose/ chest is very congested and I'm coughing up very thick, dark green (olive colored) mucous?

My nose/ chest is very congested and I'm coughing up very thick, dark green (olive colored) mucous?

Possible infection: You may have a strep infection. Check with your doctor for culture and sensitivity or an empirical trial of antibiotics if after physical exam the doctor thinks you are infected. Hope you feel better soon.

Dr. Gutti Rao Dr. Rao
Internal Medicine - Hospital-based practice
42 years in practice
Dr M.G.R. Medical University, Madras, Christian Medical College
10

10
I woke up a had a loose cough which was green tinted with dark colored blood... Will Claritin (loratadine) help this or do I have something more?

I woke up a had a loose cough which was green tinted with dark colored blood... Will Claritin (loratadine) help this or do I have something more?

Cough: Sometimes it is normal to have coughed up a little blood and colored sputum. If this is not happening very often you need to be concerned. Claritin (loratadine) may or may not help.

Dr. Barbara Hummel Dr. Hummel
Family Medicine
29 years in practice
Medical College of Wisconsin
11

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I've had a cold for about 5 days with as cough & mucus. In the morning the mucus is dark green & the cough is NT getting any better. Should I go in?

I've had a cold for about 5 days with as cough & mucus. In the morning the mucus is dark green & the cough is NT getting any better. Should I go in?

Cough + cold symptom: It would be difficult to determine what is causing this without being seen. Green mucus can occur in the morning naturally as a cold is resolving and does not necessarily mean there is an infection. If you have a fever or the symptoms last longer then 10 days then you should see your doctor. You can try saline nasal spray and Mucinex (guaifenesin) to loosen the secretions if there is no fever.

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Dr. Martin Raff Dr. Raff
Internal Medicine - Infectious Disease
52 years in practice
University of Texas Medical Branch School of Medicine
12

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I've been taking vasican bromhexine for my cough n phlegm n also on antibiotics but I'm still coughing n my phlegm is dark green. Plse help! Thanks!

I've been taking vasican bromhexine for my cough n phlegm n also on antibiotics but I'm still coughing n my phlegm is dark green. Plse help! Thanks!

Productive cough: The purpose of a cough is to clear unwanted material from your respiratory tract. The material you are taking is a substance designed to liquify the mucous and aid in the clearing of secretions but will not stop you from coughing. If it is keeping you awake you might try something with dextromethorphan in it. Check with your friendly pharmacist. They will have suggestions.

Dr. Al Hegab Dr. Hegab
Internal Medicine - Allergy & Immunology
36 years in practice
Ain Shams University Faculty of Medicine
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I have had this coughing for the past 3 mnths, dark green, slightly hard and thick follows. Went to local doctor and gave just cough syrup. Nofever?

I have had this coughing for the past 3 mnths, dark green, slightly hard and thick follows. Went to local doctor and gave just cough syrup. Nofever?

? Sinusitis: Or probably bronchitis, kindly seek a second opinion, you may very well need an imaging study like sinus CT or Chest X-ray, after careful history and physical examination. Antibiotics may very well be needed, good luck

Dr. Michael Kleerekoper Dr. Kleerekoper
Internal Medicine - Endocrinology
47 years in practice
University of Sydney Faculty of Medicine
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Chesty cough and thick green to dark green phelgm. Nose blocked at night. Been going on for a week. How long until I should see a doctor?

Chesty cough and thick green to dark green phelgm. Nose blocked at night. Been going on for a week. How long until I should see a doctor?

Soon: If you cannot wait to see your own doctor please have a husband or friend take you to the nearest Emergency facility. PS: I left Australia for USA in 1974 and still practicing. I did enjoy Brisbane for a while but have a tough time getting back! Turned over a kayak at 15 feet - YUK!

Dr. Martin Raff Dr. Raff
Internal Medicine - Infectious Disease
52 years in practice
University of Texas Medical Branch School of Medicine
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Given steroids and antibiotics 2 weeks ago, finished both still congested with dark green phlegm/cough. Can't take decongestants. What can I do?

Neti-pot: You might want to use saline rinses and mucolytics. See your local pharmacist for suggestions. Best wishes.

Dr. Kimberly Ramsdell Dr. Ramsdell
Pediatrics
21 years in practice
University of Cincinnati College of Medicine
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Went to doc on Sat diagnosed me with flu, no tests given. I was given Tamiflu (oseltamivir) but my cough is getting worse and the phlegm is very dark green.?

Phlegm: Phlegm can be different colors throughout the day and is usually darkest (yellowish green) in the morning. Since your cough is getting worse, you may have pneumonia or sinus infection and may need another trip to see your doctor.

Dr. Shahruq Sarela Dr. Sarela
Internal Medicine
6 years in practice
Ross University School of Medicine
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I've had a cough for a few months I smoke ive been on antibiotics inhalers cough syrup now im coughing so much im throwing up dark brown green stuff?

I've had a cough for a few months I smoke ive been on antibiotics inhalers cough syrup now im coughing so much im throwing up dark brown green stuff?

Cough: This is normal. Your lungs are healing during the time your not smoking and trying to get out all the tar you have exposed your lungs over the duration of smoking.

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Dr. David Bailie Dr. Bailie
Orthopedic Surgery
27 years in practice
Indiana University School of Medicine
18

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I have a mild cough, dark green stool and slight ache and twinging in my gut. Also suffer from Acid Relux and not taking anything?

Get checked: See a board certified gastroenterologist (GI doc) to get fully evaluated. Could be a number of things

Dr. William Byars Dr. Byars
Family Medicine
40 years in practice
19

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Have had a bad cough bronchitis for 3 months. E smoker stopped 5 years ago wheezing and shortness of breath. Have bad mucus dark green for 3 months?

Have had a bad cough bronchitis for 3 months. E smoker stopped 5 years ago wheezing and shortness of breath. Have bad mucus dark green for 3 months?

Get treated: You need to get checked out and treated. Whether your problem is copd, asthma, bronchiectasis, or something else, the longer the illness goes on in a poorly-controlled state, the worse it will be for your long-term health. This applies to your entire body, including your heart, not just your lungs.

Dr. Michael DePietro Dr. DePietro
Internal Medicine - Pulmonary Critical Care
31 years in practice
Hahnemann Medical College
20

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My chest and back hurts when I cough due to chest congestion. Does this warrant a chest X-ray to rule out pneumonia. Dark green mucus.?

My chest and back hurts when I cough due to chest congestion. Does this warrant a chest X-ray to rule out pneumonia. Dark green mucus.?

Maybe: It warrants an evaluation by a physician as these symptoms are consistent with pneumonia but not specific to it. Whether a chest xray is needed depends on additional info, other symptoms, fever, physical exam findings etc.