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The Medical Approach to Cough

The medical approach to the diagnosis of coughing is challenging and requires detailed information from the patient. Physicians approach the problem of simple coughing by considering the most common causes of coughing and the anatomical nature of the cough mechanism.

The Approach:
The first step is to decide where the cough starts. For example, do you feel the cough in your neck or does it feel deeper in the chest? Sometimes it is a tickle, raspiness, or soreness anywhere from you neck to lower chest. In addition, coughing mucus or phlegm of any quantity usually suggests a deeper chest cough. Finally a cough can start in the chest and progress to the neck.
It helps to take one finger and point to the area you feel your cough starts. Do not worry for now if you cannot decide, just do the best you can.

Where do you feel the cough?