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Doctor insights on: Coughing Up Stringy Phlegm

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When I wake up I have to hack up some phlegm. ( very little) it is brown in color. I am 38 f. Former smoker. I don't have a cough. Is this normal?

When I wake up I have to hack up some phlegm.  ( very little) it is brown in color. I am 38 f. Former smoker. I don't have a cough. Is this normal?

Maybe postnasal drip: Mild nasal allergies can cause some muscus dripping in back of throat/mouth and collects there during sleep and can turn a bit brown in the am. During day, little mucus/drip is pulled down by gravity, but when sleeping mucus tends to stay in back of throat and thus productive coughing/coughing in the early am. If worsens, call doc for eval. Good luck. ...Read more

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Dr. Peter Kurzweil
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Dr. Heidi Fowler
719 doctors shared insights

Phlegm (Definition)

Phlegm is the thick, sticky mucus secreted by the surface of the respiratory tract during a cold or other respiratory infection. The respiratory tract includes the nose and sinuses, throat, voice box, bronchi, and lungs. Phlegm is mucus that may contain bacteria, viruses, respiratory surface cells, and inflammatory cells. Normal mucus is not phlegm, but a protective layer secreted ...Read more


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A deep cough sometimes with phlegm no other cold signs. Gets worse at night?

A deep cough sometimes with phlegm no other cold signs. Gets worse at night?

Night time cough: Coughing at night could be due to a number of conditions, including acid reflux, sleep apnea, asthma, and heart problems. A primary care physician would be able to help determine the cause. ...Read more

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Dr. Peter Kurzweil
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3
Foamy phlegm with cough lasting over 4weeks?

Foamy phlegm with cough lasting over 4weeks?

Cough: If you have not been sick it ma be silent acid reflux or LPR. If you have been sick, it may be bronchitis or walking pneumonia-see your doctor ...Read more

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I had green phlegm for about 3 weeks with a cough and phlegm is no longer green is it necessary to still seek medical attention?

I had green phlegm for about 3 weeks with a cough and phlegm is no longer green is it necessary to still seek medical attention?

Maybe not: If u r feeling better and less sick, no temperature u may have had a viral infection and ur body has won. If u continue 2 improve u may b ok. But any worsening of ur cough or u have a color change again b cn. That would b what i personally would do. 4 peace of mind u should c u r pcp? ...Read more

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Excess phlegm with cough which has never happened to me before. How do I stop this?

Excess phlegm with cough which has never happened to me before. How do I stop this?

Diagnosis first...: Before this cough can be treated, the cause needs to be diagnosed. Possibilities include acute bronchitis from an infection of the airways, chronic bronchitis, a form of copd, bronchospasm with airway inflammation, post-nasal drip or a combination of factors. The treatments for these are all different so you need to see your doctor so your cough can be diagnosed and treated. ...Read more

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I don't get sick easily, but I have had a nasty wet cough & phlegm for nearly 2 weeks. What is it?

I don't get sick easily, but I have had a nasty wet cough & phlegm for nearly 2 weeks. What is it?

Hard to tell: Perhaps seeing a doctor to listen to your lungs , check you head, ears , eyes, nose throat and vital signs will determine if you have a virus or pneumonia. Good luck ...Read more

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Dr. Peter Kurzweil
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I am producing clear thick phlegm after I recuperate from cough.. Is that normal?

I am producing clear thick phlegm after I recuperate from cough.. Is that normal?

Normal: Yes, respiratory infections by some viruses might take longer to recuperate and cause cough for several weeks after acute infections. ...Read more

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Should a worry about a cough that has been producing various shades of phlegm. Had cough for 4 days?

Should a worry about a cough that has been producing various shades of phlegm. Had cough for 4 days?

Bronchitis...: This is likely bronchitis and if you have no to minimal fever, it is likely due to a virus. It should run its course and you should begin to feel better in a few days to a week. If symptoms worsen or don't resolve, see your doctor. ...Read more

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I'm a teenager Coughing for over a month now with green phlegm and also finished a bottle of cough syrup but to no avail?

I'm a teenager Coughing for over a month now with green phlegm and also finished a bottle of cough syrup but to no avail?

Consult your Doctor: You have had cough with green phlegm for over a month You should consult you Doctor for diagnosis and treatment.You may need antibiotics after diagnosis is established ...Read more

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Is it possible to suffocate if you have a lot of phlegm that you can not cough up?

Is it possible to suffocate if you have a lot of phlegm that you can not cough up?

Yes: Technically, yes. In people who are intubated (having a tube in their throat) and cannot cough effectively, excessive secretions are suctioned via a special device. If you have normal lung function, you should be able to cough up, unless you are terminally weak or a small child who cannot do it because he doesn't know how. ...Read more

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Dr. Sue Ferranti
3,097 doctors shared insights

Cough (Definition)

Coughing is an important way to keep your throat and airways clear. However, excessive coughing may mean you have an underlying disease or disorder. Some coughs are dry, while others are considered productive. A productive cough is one ...Read more


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