What is a cough? Learn more about chronic cough conditions in this overview and discover how treating a cough focuses primarily on types, causes, and symptoms of your cough for effective relief.

What is a cough?

Coughing is a normal reflex reaction due to stimulation of the cough receptors. However, coughing can be a symptom of a number of problems.

Treating a cough

To effectively treat a cough, the cause must first be identified and the expected duration estimated.

Symptoms a cough

Some conditions may present with coughing or have cough as part of their presenting symptoms.

Prevent coughing

An ongoing coughing is an indication that something could be wrong and shouldn’t be ignored.

Causes of a cough

Causes of a cough can be a symptom of a wide variety of different health conditions, ranging from a foreign body to infective diseases and even cancer.

Risk factors

Dusty environments and simple viral illnesses will make most of us cough, but there are certain situations that could increase the risk.

Diagnosing a cough

Your doctor will identify the type of cough you have, as well as other related symptoms you may be suffering from.

Types of cough

It is important to know what type of cough you have in order to treat it properly.

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Professor Keertan Dheda has received several prestigious awards including the 2014 Oppenheimer Award, and has published over 160 peer-reviewed papers and holds 3 patents related to new TB diagnostic or infection control technologies. He serves on the editorial board of the journals PLoS One, the International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Medicine, Lancet Respiratory Diseases and Nature Scientific Reports, amongst others. Read his full biography at the University of Cape Town Lung Institute.

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