Hi to all my friends. Its been a while since I've posted. My mom is still hangin in there. Last two scans really freaked us out (changes all over the place in the lung) but upon further inspection all new scar tissue. The PET was totally clean. Anyway she keeps getting bouts of chronic coughing. Sometimes a week goes by and nothing and then boom she will cough all night and is exhausted. So far she hasnt used anything for the cough and I am wondering if all you guys who have experienced and continue to experience post radiation coughing can give me your two cents on the best cough meds or inhalers or both. I know there are a bunch of different ones but just wondering what has worked for you all. Oh and the cough is dry...gets worse at night for some reason.



Report post

12 replies. Join the discussion


Has she tried taking Mucinex DM? It really helps loosen the phelgm and helps stop the continuous coughing. I take it twice a day (1200/60mg tablets in the green box). My primary doc put me on it and it has worked wonders.

Also, my onc has me on low dose dilaudid when helps eliminate the cough also.

None of the over the counter cough syrups worked very well for me. The only the helped at all was the CF formula, either Robitussin or the store brand. They have the same ingredients but the store brand is much cheaper.

Hope this helps. The cough can be very nerve racking, especially at night when you lie down and try to sleep.

Good luck and God Bless

Report post

My mother has tried all over the counter meds and at the end, the only cough medicine that helps her is codeine sulfate. She started taking it every 4 hours and now is down to every 12 hours. Mom is doing her second session of chemo.

Report post

I use robitussin dm and then have one half vicodin if the cough is really bad or if I am at church or a movie or someplace quiet. Usually half a pill once or twice a week is all.
xo Nancy

Report post

I've always used the Expectorant cough meds, but if it's a dry cough I would try 1. honey/lemon cough drops 2. make sure no other medicine (like Blood Pressure med) is causing cough 3. Vaporizer to moisten air 4. drink plenty of hot liquids 5. cover mouth when resting to moisten and heat air.
When I used to get Bronchitis alot, my Dad used to bring me piping hot saltwater to sip on. Every time the cough started, I would take a sip.... It worked like cough suppressant! Good Luck.

Report post

After tearing intercostal muscles from coughing (post radiation), my Onc prescribed a codeine based cough syrup. Nothing over the counter even comes close.

Don't be afraid to ask.

Report post

Thank you all for your post. gonna ask the onc tomorrow


Report post

1/2 a tab of Percocet suppresses the cough. I only allow myself one dose per day. It also enables me to nap.

I have tried inhalers, codeine, morphine, ad nauseum. The same thing is not going to work for everyone. My cough is a dry one and between the period when it was at it's worst and the radiation, T-3 and 4 are badly damaged.

I sincerely hope you find something to help. My sleep can become very much affected and after only 2 days I would easily tell you the secret war plans, where the money is hidden, or anything else you want to know.

Take care


Report post

What about trying good old lemon and honey drinks. They soothe the throat well, and seem to reduce the cough. If the throat is sore and inflamed from coughing try a sage tea. Soak sage leaves in hot water and drink, works a treat.
You could also try an inhalation like eucalyptus and menthol to soothe a bad cough, and loosen up anything that is 'sitting' on the chest. Put a couple of drops of each on into hot water and breathe in.

Report post

Believe it or not I am prescribed generic NyQuil as a sleep aid. Had been taking it for 6+ months nightly from Xmas thru July of this year (while my cancer grew), admitted to my doc I was hooked on it - could not sleep without it - and she said she saw no reason not to continue it.

They tried moving me over to a few different sleep prescription drugs but nothing works like my syrup.

I use a 10oz bottle of CVS brand in six nights. The drugs they gave me all produced either violent or weird dreams and did not allow continuous sleep.

Report post

I give my husband 1 TBSP whiskey honey and lemon, works really well. We don't have to do this very often but none of the other things stop his cough when it does happen, and always at night.

Report post

hi - just one note. Moisture in air inhaled does help. i needed it in winter. I was warned not to use humidifier as it can start mold/mildew. We used a crock pot set on low to help in bedroom at night. I also worked on breathing with my closed, day and night. definitely helped, plus it is a good habit for when you are around crowds, since nose helps to filter 'stuf' in air. Reduce colds, etc.

Report post

my doctor predscribed BENZONATATE (generic) Perles. they are tiny gold gel caps taken every 4 hrs as needed. They are wonderful.
He also prescribed a cough syrup to be taken at bedtime TUSSINEX. hope this helps

Report post

This discussion is closed to replies. We close all discussions after 90 days.

If there's something you'd like to discuss, click below to start a new discussion.

Photo of Dave Grant

The Lung Cancer Survivors Support Community has provided support for patients, caregivers, families and friends since 2006. We welcome over 600 new members every month in the fight against lung cancer.

ALK mutations and lung cancer

Join the discussion about ALK mutations and lung cancer

Things you can do

Discussion topics

Community leaders