Vol. 94 No. 8 August 2001

Chronic Cough in Otolaryngology

Kensei Naito (Fujita Health University)

   Chronic cough without accurate pathological findings in the lower respiratory airway can present a difficult diagnostic dilemma. The most common causes, such as chronic bronchitis, asthma, postnasal drip, cough variant asthma, atopic cough, laryngeal allergy and gastroesophageal reflux, can usually be suspected on the basis of the history and physical examination and subsequently confirmed by appropriate diagnostic tests and responses to specific therapy. In otolaryngology, postnasal drip, laryngeal allergy and tracheobronchial foreign body are the primary causes of chronic cough and these clinical features are described in this review. However, when we examine patients complaining of chronic cough, we must take into account the possibility of severe conditions, such as lung cancer, bronchial tuberculosis, hypopharyngeal cancer, maxillary malignancy and mycosis.

Key words : chronic cough, cough variant asthma, atopic cough, laryngeal allergy, gastroesophageal reflux, postnasal drip