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Q. I have a severe dry cough with a feeling of an object in my throat. Please help.

Answered by
Dr. B. Vageesh Padiyar
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Jun 20, 2021

Hi doctor,

I am a 38-year-old male with a height of 5'7 feet and a weight of 69 kg. Six months before, I had a severe dry cough, and that got over by a week on its own I did not take any medicine. I also got few ulcers in my mouth, and that healed in a week. That time, I noticed four small red bumps on the back of my tongue. I did not visit a clinic due to this pandemic. It has been six months now, but still, it is the same size and did not reduce or increase. Please find the attached picture of it. And, for the past six months, I feel something stuck in my throat. I feel good in the early morning, but sometimes I feel less pain inside the throat when I start eating. Sometimes, I have light irritation. Earlier, I used to get this feeling I used to gargle with salt water, but it is back again for the past two months. I need your help on these two issues, doctor. Thank you.

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Hi,

Welcome to icliniq.com.

The most common reason for this irritation in the throat with a feeling of a lump or something obstructing while swallowing saliva can be a feature of chronic silent GERD with LPR (gastroesophageal reflux with laryngopharyngeal reflux). Bumps at the back of your tongue represent taste buds that can increase in size owing to constant reflux.

Even though you might be asymptomatic or never had gastric issues in between, the inflammation in the throat often exists in the hidden form and can resurface when adequate care is not taken.

Why does hidden acid reflux become so problematic?

As you know, the stomach usually has got cells that release hydrochloric acid and thus keep the gastric environment acidic.

Your entire mucosal lining from the mouth, throat, and food pipe (esophagus) is not meant to handle anything acidic. However, the throat is the most sensitive of the three structures due to its rich nerve supply. Therefore, if your mouth, throat, or food pipe chronically comes in contact with acidic contents in a given situation, an inflammation starts which the body initially takes care of, but once this compensation wears out, you start developing symptoms that you have mentioned.

Please try to follow the below advice:

1) Maintain a strict diet, eating on time.

2) Avoid spicy, oily, and cold food or drinks.

3) Keep a gap of two hours between meals and going to bed.

4) Do not overeat. Instead, keep your stomach half empty and have regular intermittent light food like fresh-cut fruits between main meals.

5) Saltwater gargling 8 to 10 times a day for 15 days.

6) Avoid alcohol and smoking as they can potentiate reflux.

7) Try to maintain a left lateral position while sleeping to reduce the chance of reflux.

I suggest you with:

  • Tablet Pan-D 40 mg (Pantoprazole 40 mg and Domperidone 30 mg) once in the morning before breakfast for one month.
  • Syrup Mucaine gel (Oxetacaine, Alumunium hydroxide, Milk of Magnesia) one teaspoon three times a day 20 minutes before meals for one month.

Ensure you follow the precautionary measures as much as possible as mere medications will not fetch long-term relief.

Please understand that this typically takes four to six weeks for things to normalize and for symptoms to subside and chiefly depends on how much you have been able to follow the precautions mentioned above as 80 percent of the treatment lies in it.

Do not worry, as this is a treatable entity, and things will be fine.

I hope I have answered your query in detail. If there is anything more you need to know or enquire, please do let me know.

Warm Regards.


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