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Q. Does blood in cough indicate cancer?

Answered by
Dr. Arshad Hussain Shah
and medically reviewed by Dr.Nithila A
This is a premium question & answer published on Jun 27, 2019 and last reviewed on: Jul 01, 2019

Hello doctor,

I am 25-years-old. I am a smoker, and I have smoked for five years. My issue was four months ago. I got my chest X-ray, and it was normal. Then I gave up smoking for three months then again smoked for 1.5 months, but before five months, I smoked 15 cigarettes. After some days on, I was in another place, and the temperature was low. I was riding my bike and started coughing.

My cough was dry and no mucus. So took medicine and it was gone in three days. But I have been coughing four to five times a day. So yesterday morning, while cleaning my tongue, I coughed, and blood came out. So in the night, I did it on purpose again blood came out. So I am scared, but in the morning, I did on purpose many times and heavily but no blood, mucus, fever or chest pain, and no shortness of breath. And whenever it is cold, I get a cough, and when sunny, there is no cough. I am scared to death. Is this cancer. Please help.



Welcome to

Do not usually worry this type of dry cough is due to allergy, environmental pollution, change in weather, etc. And smoking will usually worsen it. But you told that X-ray chest was normal that is a good thing. The worrying things are if in case you are suffering from recurrent fever, weight loss, shortness of breath, sweating, and persistent cough for more than three weeks.

You had one episode of blood with a cough, but without examining physically, it is difficult to comment, but it could have been due to gum bleeding. Or sometimes forced and excessive coughing can cause a mild rupture in the mucosa and cause slight bleeding. But if it is coming again and again then need a thorough check-up by a pulmonologist. So it looks some allergic type of cough. Quit smoking and try to keep away from pollution, dust, smoke, etc., take a balanced diet. In case of cough persist, or there is one more episode of blood with sputum or fever develops, consult a pulmonologist.

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