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Pulmonary Fibrosis

Minimal Bibasilar Atelectasis

09/23/2009

Question:

I have just received my CT back with #2 listing the above minimal bibasilar atelectasis. On one of the reviews of this on your page, it says it could be due to mucus plugs. I have a chronic cough (6 years) with mucus. Inhalers don`t seem to work. What do I do about the mucus? How do I get my cough to stop? Specialists seem to be dumbfounded at the fact that my cough usually starts at a freezing temp. and lasts until temps. are above freezing and my cough will start in the summer at above 90 degrees. HELP

Answer:

One condition that can cause cough at different temperature extremes is asthma. Sometimes "cough-variant asthma" can be difficult to identify because pulmonary function tests may be normal unless the temperature conditions are replicated.

There is a test called a methacholine challenge study that is useful to identify patients with cough-variant asthma and you should ask your pulmonologist if this test would be of help in your situation. However, most patients with cough variant asthma will improve with inhalers.

Another condition that can be worse with temperature extremes is vocal cord dysfunction which is diagnosed using a test called a videolaryngostroboscopy. You should also discuss with your physician if this test would be useful.

For more information:

Go to the Pulmonary Fibrosis health topic, where you can:

Response by:

James N Allen, Jr, MD James N Allen, Jr, MD
Clinical Professor of Pulmonary, Allergy, Critical Care & Sleep Medicine
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University