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Pulmonary Fibrosis

Dizziness Caused by Violent Coughing



I sometimes have violent coughing (not often), but when it happens the inside of my head does strange things. It appears at times that my whole brain is trying to turn inside my head, or I want to blackout, or faint, or at one time it felt like a buzz saw sound in between my brain and the skull. The effects usually last from 5 seconds to 20 seconds. The problems have been ocurring on and off for the last 2 or 3 years, increasing with time.

I don`t smoke or drink alot. I do a little training on the weekends but slightly overweight (82kg). My age is 50 and I am a male. My health is generally good.

Is it just old age, or is there an explanation for it?

Your advice and early reply will be appreciated.


There are many things that can cause chronic cough. Some of the more common causes include esophageal reflux, asthma, nasal drainage, and medications (particularly drugs in the ACE inhibitor class). Some patients with severe cough can develop "cough syncope" when they get dizzy and can even pass out from coughing. However, it is important to be sure that there are no other, more serious causes of the blacking out so speaking with your doctor would be in order.

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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