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Doctor insights on: Productive Cough After Flu

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Dr. Sue Ferranti
3,613 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


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I get persistent non productive cough when I get flue like infection which last continuously upto 3 months. Come back again when I get next flu or cold?

I get persistent non productive cough when I get flue like infection which last continuously upto 3 months. Come back again when I get next flu or cold?

Bronchospasm...: This likely represents bronchospasm as a result of the infection. It can be treated with bronchodilator and steroid inhalers, which should control the cough. See your doctor the next time this occurs so this treatment can be rendered. ...Read more

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Had cold/flu symptoms for 8 days, fever and productive cough stopping sleep for last 3. when should I go to the dr? How to stay asleep?

Had cold/flu symptoms for 8 days, fever and productive cough stopping sleep for last 3. when should I go to the dr? How to stay asleep?

Mgt: Most uncomplicated viral illnesses should resolve within 10 days. If you have had a fever for more than three days or a prolonged course, I would advise a follow up visit. ...Read more

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I’ve had a fever and a productive cough now for 5 days. Negative for flu and chest X-ray normal. Pinkish and green phlegm. Finished zpack with no change in symptoms. What could this be and what tests should I ask for next?

I’ve had a fever and a productive cough now for 5 days. Negative for flu and chest X-ray normal. Pinkish and green phlegm. Finished zpack with no change in symptoms. What could this be and what tests should I ask for next?

Mgt: If you are still producing sputum, please see your PCP for a sputum culture, screening for Strep and other bacterial causes. If there is a prolonged viral illness, inflammatory changes may occur in the airway, and the need for an anti inflammatory drug can be evaluated.
A virtual appointment may be helpful to you and your PCP. Your medical record and chest Radiograph result may be uploaded. ...Read more

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Took tamiflu (oseltamivir) last week to get over flu. Still have a bad, deep, non-productive cough and tight lungs. When should I worry/return to doctor's office?

Took tamiflu (oseltamivir) last week to get over flu. Still have a bad, deep, non-productive cough and tight lungs. When should I worry/return to doctor's office?

Yes: You may have a pneumonia, which can happen after the flu. If you are not getting better, you should definitely go back to the doctor's office to get checked out. Better safe than sorry. ...Read more

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Is this the flu or a cold. No fever. Congestion productive cough but with small amount of blood in phlegm. I have a sore throat and neck hurts.

Is this the flu or a cold. No fever. Congestion productive cough but with small amount of blood in phlegm. I have a sore throat and neck hurts.

Could be either: Symptoms of flu and routine viral respiratory disease overlap. If it is within the first couple days then get viral cultures for flu and start tamiflu (oseltamivir) if positive to shorten and decrease illness. Otherwise treat symptoms. ...Read more

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Why would it be that after take a cold shower, I fall sick (phlegm, cough, flu etc)?

Why would it be that after take a cold shower, I fall sick (phlegm, cough, flu etc)?

May be: May be you lungs shiver too, pl take only hot shower cleans you better and no falling sick and cough common sense. ...Read more

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I have been coughing green phlegm for two months now and I also have a cough and flu?

I have been coughing green phlegm for two months now and I also have a cough and flu?

Green: phlegm may mean you have a tracheobronchitis which is often due to PNEUMOCOCCUS a BACTERIA which may appear green in mucous!

You may need a short course of antibiotics at this point!

Call your PCP (Primary Care Provider) as soon as practicable!
Hope this helps!
Dr Z ...Read more

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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. ...Read more

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I have been coughing for a week after I had the flu? Last week I had the flu and didn't cough very much. When I started to feel better I started coughing. The first day it didn't bring up much phlegm, the second day did though. The days after that I have

I have been coughing for a week after I had the flu? Last week I had the flu and didn't cough very much. When I started to feel better I started coughing. The first day it didn't bring up much phlegm, the second day did though. The days after that I have

Hello.: Hello. Don't know how old you are or if you have asthma. I can't diagnose your condition. It sounds like you may have had a viral infection which may have developed into bronchitis. What is of significant concern is that you are wheezing every time you breath and your inhaler is not helping. Regardless of the cause, your airways are overly reactive. If you are having trouble breathing, you need to go to the emergency room right now. If your breathing is not labored with just a little wheeze, than recommend you call your doctor in the morning. Since you are not responding to the medication that you have, your doctor may need to prescribe additional medication, at least temporarily to reduce spasm in your airways. Take care. ...Read more

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Had the flu 3 weeks ago, lasted just over a week and since then have had a cough. Just recently I have been coughing up green phlegm. Is that bad?

Had the flu 3 weeks ago, lasted just over a week and since then have had a cough. Just recently I have been coughing up green phlegm. Is that bad?

Not necessarily: If you are feeling well otherwise this may simply be your body clearing out material from the inflammation. If, however, you have trouble breathing, fever, chest pain, or other symptoms, go and see a doctor asap. Good luck. ...Read more

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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.?

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. ...Read more

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I've had the flu and a bad cough for a few days. Today when I cough up phlem there is a small amout of blood. What would l have irritated?

I've had the flu and a bad cough for a few days. Today when I cough up phlem there is a small amout of blood. What would l have irritated?

Probably not serious: Are you otherwise healthy? Was the blood pink or dark in colour? Are you better from the flu in every other way?
The blood could come from the oropharynx or the lung.
If you are unwell or if the symptoms persist you should see a doctor to evaluate you in detail. ...Read more

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I get flu every year, but this time after flu, when it lowered down, I noticed bloody phlegm, with fever and chest pain but there is no cough.?

I get flu every year, but this time after flu, when it lowered down, I noticed bloody phlegm, with fever and chest pain but there is no cough.?

Vaccination: If you get the flu every year, you need to be vaccinated. It will help prevent the most common strains of influenza. See your physician if you think you have it, as antiviral medications can help if taken appropriately. ...Read more

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I had a flu. Everything is gone now except for minor phlegm that I feel in my lungs. My spleen is bothering me now. No real pain except when I cough?

I had a flu. Everything is gone now except for minor phlegm that I feel in my lungs. My spleen is bothering me now. No real pain except when I cough?

Mgt: Pain with cough during or following a chest infection may be related to inflammation or infection of the pleural space/pleura.
I would suggest using a heating pad and NSAID as tolerated, but if you are having any problems breathing, then a follow up appt should be made. ...Read more

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I cough up mucus after eating. It started whilst I was recovering from a flu but it has persisted for months now. Is it serious and how is it treated?

I cough up mucus after eating. It started whilst I was recovering from a flu but it has persisted for months now. Is it serious and how is it treated?

Asthma: The most common cause of persistent cough after a flu is asthma. Even if you are not known to have asthma you could have what we call reactive airway disease, which is asthma that manifests after a cold. You should see your doctor. ...Read more

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My 9-month baby starts to cough with some phlegm for an hour after her 1st bottle of milk. Also a bit of stuffy nose. No other sympton of flu. What2d?

My 9-month baby starts to cough with some phlegm for an hour after her 1st bottle of milk. Also a bit of stuffy nose. No other sympton of flu. What2d?

Happy baby or not?: If a baby always coughs after eating or drinking, he may have some reflux problem. If a baby is normally fine, with no cough, then a little stuffy or runny nose is usually a cold. Sometimes it can be allergies, and it can also be a strep throat. A happy baby with slight symptoms can be watched a couple of days, and then see the doctor if not all well. The doctor might then do a strep throat test. ...Read more

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Had flu-like symptoms (tiredness, mild ache) 2-3 days ago; that subsided but still intermittent cough w/thick yellow-brown phlegm. What should I do?

Had flu-like symptoms (tiredness, mild ache) 2-3 days ago; that subsided but still intermittent cough w/thick yellow-brown phlegm. What should I do?

Sounds viral: Drink plenty of fluids and get eight hours of sleep every night! Eat healthy and take some decongestant/ expectorant if allergy medicine does not help with coughing from Postnasal drip. See doctor if condition worsened, you may have a bacterial infection that requires antibiotics. ...Read more

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I just taken one ciprofloxacin for flu and cough with yellow phlegm by doctor. Can I stop, know antibiotic dun not treat flu..

I just taken one ciprofloxacin for flu and cough with yellow phlegm by doctor. Can I stop, know antibiotic dun not treat flu..

Ask your own doctor: You need to ask the doctor who prescribed the med. If you do have documented influenza, the antibiotic will not help. However, it may help an acute bronchitis. ...Read more

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What to do if I have a bad cough and flu, my throat is very itchy and What to do if I have greenish phlegm. What can I do?

What to do if I have a bad cough and flu, my throat is very itchy and What to do if I have greenish phlegm. What can I do?

Cough: It would be a good idea to visit your doctor and get a culture of the greenish phlegm as it appears highly suspicious for an infection. Your doctor may consider prescribing antibiotics as well as other treatments for your other symptoms. ...Read more

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Flu. High fever that has gone down now. Some night sweats. Mild cough. No chest pain. Blood in phlegm at morning that clears up during the day.?

Flu. High fever that has gone down now. Some night sweats. Mild cough. No chest pain. Blood in phlegm at morning that clears up during the day.?

Give it time: What you described fits in with upper respiratory viral infection and it is healing. Give it time.
For good health - Have a diet rich in fresh vegetables, fruits, whole grains, milk and milk products, nuts, beans, legumes, lentils and small amounts of lean meats. Avoid saturated fats. Drink enough water daily, so that your urine is mostly colorless. Exercise at least 150 minutes/week and increase the intensity of exercise gradually. Do not use tobacco, alcohol, weed or street drugs in any form.
Practice safe sex. ...Read more

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Just recovering from a flu. What is causing a sharp pain under the right breast whenever I breathe or cough? Also coughs up phlegm w blood 2x now.

Pulled muscle likely: To sort this out completely would require a physical examination, but you probably injured your rib cage in some way during a coughing spell. Such injuries are not rare and usually heal on their own, in time. An inflammation on the outer lining of the lung (pleurisy) is another possibility. The bloody phlegm is a concern. It may simply be due to bronchitis, but have your doctor check it out. ...Read more

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Cold/Flu 2mo ago & heavy cough hasn't gone away. Dr. Put me on meds and it didn't help. Green phlegm, throat irritat. Cough til I get red. Xray ok?

Cold/Flu 2mo ago & heavy cough hasn't gone away. Dr. Put me on meds and it didn't help. Green phlegm, throat irritat. Cough til I get red. Xray ok?

Cough: Xray ok means was it normal or getting chest xray us ok? I guess snyibiotic trial at this point should be appropriate if you have tried over the counter medications. ...Read more

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I received the flu shot a couple months ago but now im sick with an runny clogged nose, a constant cough along with spitting up phlegm, is it the flu?

I received the flu shot a couple months ago but now im sick with an runny clogged nose, a constant cough along with spitting up phlegm, is it the flu?

This sounds more: Like a cold. Cold symptoms can include nasal congestion, runny nose, coughing, headache, sneezing, sore throat, watery eyes, mild fever, feeling tired ; watery eyes. Tips: sore throat – gargle with warm salt water (1/2 tsp salt in 8 oz of water). Get strep test/culture if very sore. Congestion – saline nose drops or netti pot. For anti-inflammatory effect ; mobilizing mucus- homemade chicken>. ...Read more

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3yrs boy gets dry cough every month for 10 days, then 39C fever, phlegm, then chesty cough. Flu panel neg on all occasions, RSV pos only once. Allergy panel neg. Chest x-ray clear. Lungs always clear. What reasons for 12 upp respi infections a year?

3yrs boy gets dry cough every month for 10 days, then 39C fever, phlegm, then chesty cough. Flu panel neg on all occasions, RSV pos only once. Allergy panel neg. Chest x-ray clear. Lungs always clear. What reasons for 12 upp respi infections a year?

3 yo w/ URTIs: In a 3 yo with recurrent infections would consider allergies, asthma, mycoplasma infection, reflux, sinusitis (due to environmental /food allergies often milk) immune disorder- a variant of primary immune deficiency, cystic fibrosis (usually though would have abnormal CXR), f/u/ w/ allergist ...Read more

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3yrs boy gets dry cough every month for 10 days, then 39C fever, phlegm, then chesty cough. Flu panel neg on all occasions, RSV pos only once. Allergy panel neg. Chest x-ray clear. Lungs always clear. What reasons for 12 upp respi infections a year?

3yrs boy gets dry cough every month for 10 days, then 39C fever, phlegm, then chesty cough. Flu panel neg on all occasions, RSV pos only once. Allergy panel neg. Chest x-ray clear. Lungs always clear. What reasons for 12 upp respi infections a year?

Many possibilities: Your child should have a test for cystic fibrosis. If that is negative, then I recommend he be tested for an immune deficit with quantitative immunoglobulins and IgG subsets as well as IgE level. Has he had a test for tuberculosis? Is he exposed to anyone who smokes? Is he exposed to interior fumes of any type? Consider scheduling a visit with one of our providers for an in depth assessment. ...Read more

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I am experiencing abdominal pain (side: right upper, left upper) (severity: mild), diarrhea, mucus in stool, cough (quality: blood in phlegm, with phlegm or mucus), wheezing (worsened by: in the evening, at night, during cold or flu), unintentional we

I am experiencing abdominal pain (side: right upper, left upper) (severity: mild), diarrhea, mucus in stool, cough (quality: blood in phlegm, with phlegm or mucus), wheezing (worsened by: in the evening, at night, during cold or flu), unintentional we

See a docotor: It is not unusual to experience abdominal pain from muscle strain after 4 days of severe coughing. Still, if the pain is worse when u take a deep breath, or if the pain is worsening even though the cough is improving it could be something else. A cough that is producing thick green mucus might indicate pneumonia or a bad bronchitis. Gallbladder infection won't give you cough but does abdo pain. ...Read more

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43 yr old M with slight phlegm cough, yet no nasal congestion, with headache in the temples/eyes and evening fever? Flu, cold, sinus infection??

43 yr old M with slight phlegm cough, yet no nasal congestion, with headache in the temples/eyes and evening fever? Flu, cold, sinus infection??

Very much possible: Need to see your doctor, might need an antibiotic, meanwhile keep doing the nasal washes, OTC pain killers, take care ...Read more

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Always get a flu (cough, cold, sore throat, yellow phlegm) within a week after exercise. A 1 hour gym class and I'm sick. How to prevent this pls?

Always get a flu (cough, cold, sore throat, yellow phlegm) within a week after exercise. A 1 hour gym class and I'm sick. How to prevent this pls?

Exercise/infection: There is some evidence that parameters of immune function can be slightly diminished with intense exercise but this is more than balanced by the beneficial effects of exercise. The probability here is that you are being exposed to classmates with infections that are transmitted to you, and not that your immune system is being compromised. ...Read more

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Clear thick phlegm in throat. No cough or flu symptoms. Just stuffy nose and tired. Upper abdominal is sore.

Clear thick phlegm in throat. No cough or flu symptoms. Just stuffy nose and tired. Upper abdominal is sore.

Flu or GERD: Even without flu symptoms I would first think of a generalized or abdominal flu or gerd. Gastroesophageal reflux disease. Best see your primary care md or ENT specialist. ...Read more

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I have had a recurring productive cough with some fever and a cold (once), body pains and facial pain. What could be the problem?

I have had a recurring productive cough with some fever and a cold (once), body pains and facial pain. What could be the problem?

Infection: Sounds like you have an infection, ...see the Dr. As it is not resolving and they can hopefully diagnose a viral vs a bacterial infection and treat you accordingly. Best wishes. ...Read more

Dr. Sue Ferranti
625 Doctors shared insights

Productive Cough (Definition)

Cough which ...Read more