Chronic Dry Coughing

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Hi, first time poster.  I'm a 45yo man, 215lbs, 6'/1.83m with a Aortic Arch Aneurysm @ 4.9cm.  I ran a couple 5k's within the last month and after the last one, developed a cough.  The cough is non-productive.  Dry tickling right at the base of my neck (like if you were to put your fingers in the small area where your collarbones meet in the center, below the adam's apple).  I've had it for two weeks without change.  I saw a generalist and he gave me an inhaler but it does nothing to stop the cough.  No allergy syptoms, no cold symptoms, no mucous.  Just a dry cough.  Oh, and it's positional.  I sleep like a baby, no coughing.  But as soon as I'm up and about it lasts all day.  I feel fine otherwise.  Could this be related to my aneurysm?  Pressure related maybe?  I've seen it listed as a possible symptom but I've never seen any postings from actual experience. I'm traveling in Holland and won't be able to see my doc for a few more weeks.  Any info would be greatly appreciated.

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  • Posted

    I too have an acending aortic aneurysm, last measured at 5.1 cm and I also have a bicuspid aortic valve, with mild to moderate leakage. I had a lung function test a week or so ago, and found that although my lungs are clear and the capicity is good, they are not getting enought oxygen, most likely due to my leaking heart valve. I too have a dry cough, but only when active. 
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  • Posted

    Hi, I had 5cm aortic route replacement and aortic mechanical valve at the same time, I had a cough and given an inhaler also my legs went into spasms at night which kept me awake, didn't know until i saw my consultant that it's all connected. you must go see about asap.


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  • Posted

    It's funny that you said your legs spasmed.  About a month ago, I had a calf cramp (full on cramp) for more than 48 hours.  Then had both cramp about two nights ago (not while in bed, just walking around).  Just assumed I was dehydrated (which I could have been).
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  • Posted

    I don't know if I would describe them as full on cramps. but I occasionalluy get the feeling like JUST BEFORE you get those calf cramps that wake you up? I've had that feeling in my arms and other parts of my body as well. two have me thinking that I'd better be speaking to my Doctor/Mr. (cardiothorasic surgeon) next time I see them. 
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  • Posted

    Sounds like your aneurysm might be showing symptoms--chronic cough is one of the symptoms listed for an aortic aneurysm.  World class aneurysm specialist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN told me that aneurysms "speak to us."  Any aneurysm showing symptoms MUST be repaired quickly, so it's always good to listen especially since yours is almost 5.0cm.  This article will explain a lot just google "Beating a Sudden Killer" and then keep your blood pressure down, don't lift weights, and get to a competent cardiothoracic surgeon--fast. (I'm a researcher, not a doctor so this is simply my advice)  My ascending aortic aneurysm is 4.3 but it's causing occasional symptoms (cough, pain in upper back radiating downward and then up to the front of the chest, pressure in the throat and throbbing in the ear)
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    • Posted

      Hi Jill,

      That's a good post...I like that..." Aneurysms, speak to us".....

      I wore a "Survivor" T-Shirt recently at a Heart Health Day, an event put on annually by my area cardiac physician ( he does heart surgery as well..) He was the doc that did all the numerous tests on me before I even met him...And referred me onto a very reputable Vascular Surgeon in a University Hospital, in London, Ontario Canada.

      I  researched the Internet, once I had obtained all my medical reports and CD pics of my X-rays, CT scans and an MRI...I had a very vivid look at some amazing 3-D pics of my 8cm saccular aortic arch aneurysm. 

      I had a previous operation over this same site, 40 years ago. At the age of 18 yrs., I had a congenital coarctation of the aorta on the "Arch",not uncommon, but with an additional anomaly, an "Aberrant origin of the R. Subclavian Artery", which was very close to my "Coarctation", such that, in those days, they didn't have access to the imaging techniques that they have today!  

      I was having the open surgery not knowing whether they would go with Plan "A" or Plan "B"... 

      It ended up being successful, in that the cardiac surgeon had enough room to Replace the narrowing with a Dacron graft, but opted NOT to re-implant the R. Subclavian Artery back to it's normal "proximal" location on the "Arch" ...   I think it would only have proved to be a further surgical insult that they did not want to risk at that time....for which I am grateful, because obviously I lived another 40 years!  They did the surgery on my left side, I had a thoracotomy...two ribs left out...4th and 5th..  It was easily accessible. as I was a small frame in my upper body!  I'm 5'6"....I was 117lbs at that time!  ( I believe this is the reason my recent graphs also showed that my left lung was/is stuck to the Arch...C'est la vie!)

      I fortunately had no heart anomaly specifically, but did have an enlargement of my R. Innominate/ & Common Carotid Artery at the neck level...which developed over the earlier 18 years of my fact, that's what was noticeable....a protruding vein over this rather prominently, throbbing artery in my neck, such that one could take my pulse, just looking at me from across the room....

      I guess I had long Dad was the one seeing this and went with me for a check up.  

      Mum was busy with five kids...she was the oldest of twelve... Also, more attention was focused to my sensorineural hearing loss from early on which was diagnosed officially  at age five yrs...when I was in kindergarten school.  I got to attend a Special Needs school to get Speech Therapy and to learn to talk...I had a 70-75 % deafness ( or 25% hearing, positively speaking!!)

      Anyway, I was eventually referred to the Toronto Hospital  for the available place to do Angiograms...

      My presentation, at 18 yrs, with those anomalies, was such that:

      ... my right arm was hypotensive,  (the R. Subclavian A. arose posterior to the coarctation).  I did not have Marfan's.

      The Left arm  was hypertensive ( the Left Subclavian Artery was situated BEFORE/ proximal to my narrowing ...) 

      They described me as having almost total absence of pulses in three of my extremities. The highest systolic detectable in the R. Arm was 90 and no pulse was palpable from the groin down.  ( I remember after the first surgery, laying awake, I could feel my foot pulsing...quite significantly but nicely, kinda like opening up a dam! Lol...)

      I'm rereading my notes with more realizations every time I go over them...I didn't have a Kommerell aneurysm which may also be asymptomatic, or cause symptoms of oesophageal or tracheal obstruction....which funnily are the symptoms I had this second time around...pand what prompted me to get it checked after almost three years of these symptoms...or more?

      Jill, I have a boyfriend, also a "Researcher" in the Medical Field who lived in Dallas, Texas at the time of my latest scenario and he connected me with a prominent, well-respected cardiac doc in Texas who I was very fortunate to communicate with via e-mail!  He offered to see me but also referred me to a student/ mentor of his, that is practising as a Cardiac-Thoracic surgeon in Toronto and was fortunately able to see me as well.  "She" is one of two female cardiac surgeons in Ontario, specializing in this particular area...of aortic aneurysms.  She is part of a Cardiac team at the hospital where I had my original surgery.  She operated on one side and the Vascular Specialist operated on the other side...of course they worked together alongside with the the radiologists and the two anesthetists on the day of my surgery just last year.

      This USA doctor was instrumental in getting me another opinion and for that I'm grateful.  

      He is a Professor of Surgery and of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics, a Vice Chair for Research, Michael E. DeBakey Department of Surgery, a Director of Research, for the Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the Cardiovascular Research Institute for Baylor College of Medicine. He is also associated with the Department of Cardiovascular Surgery at Texas Heart Institute, Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center and CHI St. Luke’s Health...

      Thank you Scott!!....from the bottom of my heart!!!


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