Gilchrist, FJ and Carroll, WD (2016) Assessing chronic cough in children. Paediatrics and Child Health, 26 (6). pp. 273-275. ISSN 1918-1485

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Cough is a protective physiological reflex that aids the clearance of airway secretions and aspirated material. As such, it is normal to cough. Coughing becomes abnormal when the frequency or severity impacts on the child's ability to eat, sleep, play or learn. Cough is a non-specific symptom and a detailed history and examination is therefore vital when trying to elucidate the cause. Most episodes of cough in children are acute (less than 3 weeks) and secondary to a lower respiratory infection. A cough that persists beyond three weeks can be classified as prolonged acute (3–8 weeks) or chronic (more than 8 weeks). The exact prevalence of chronic cough is unknown but may be as high as 10%. It is a frequent reason for the use of over the counter remedies, appointments in primary care and referral to secondary or tertiary services. The impact of chronic cough should not be underestimated; it can have a profound adverse effect on the quality of life of both the affected child and their family. The causes of chronic cough in children are different to those in adults and adult cough protocols are therefore of no use in children. This brief review aims to give some advice for a paediatrician faced with a child who has been coughing for more than 8 weeks.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Uncontrolled Keywords: bronchiectasis; cough; inhaled foreign body; persistent bacterial bronchitis; pertussis
Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC705 Diseases of the respiratory system
R Medicine > RJ Pediatrics
Divisions: Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > Institute for Applied Clinical Sciences
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 11 May 2017 13:33
Last Modified: 12 Apr 2019 13:45

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