Respiratory Disorders Expert Forum
Excessive coughing/mucus after eating
About This Forum:

This forum is for questions and support regarding lung and respiratory issues. such as: Allergies, Asthma, Bronchitis, Colds - Flu, Chronic Cough, COPD, Cystic Fibrosis, Emphysema, Fibrosis, Lung Abscess, Nasal Polyps, Pleurisy, Pneumonia, Sarcoidosis, Sinusitis, Tuberculosis.

Font Size:
A
A
A
Background:
Blank
Blank
Blank
This expert forum is not accepting new questions. Please post your question in one of our medical support communities.
Blank Blank

Excessive coughing/mucus after eating

For many years I have had a problem where after every meal I immediately begin choking and coughing, which can last for a good half hour or more.  It feels like all of my air passages become blocked with mucus and I have trouble breathing.  Sometimes the coughing is so severe I end up vomiting or I often gag almost to the point of vomiting (It's very exhausting.)  It doesn't seem to matter what I eat, and it happens pretty much after every meal.  I have never been diagnosed with any kind of respiratory problem like asthma or anything like that, nor do I have any food allergies, but I was wondering if maybe I should tell my doctor about this problem and if maybe it is a fixable thing?  Does anyone else have a similar problem?
Related Discussions
251132_tn?1198082422
You should tell your doctor about this problem so that you can find out if it is fixable.  Food allergy doesn
27 Comments
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
I have quite similar symptoms like you. Do you clear your throat a lot during the day? I do and everytime I eat or drink something I experience also a lot of mucus in the throat which makes me clear my throat again. But the funny thing is, that I never have to cough.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
Yes, I am always clearing my throat after ingesting anything, people often ask if I have a cold.  Most of the time I don't realize I am doing it, until someone comments.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
This sounds a lot like Acid Reflux. It can cause inflammation in the lungs. When the stomach refluxes the acid up, it can go into the airways causing an asthma like attack. This is my son's main problem at this time although we are persuing futher testing to rule out other chronic problems. Talk to your Doctor for sure. Anything causing breathing problems, be it temporary or permanent is serious stuff. And if it is reflux, an over the counter acid reducer may be all you need.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
It can be acid reflux too. You can check that if you have symptoms like heartburn too. F.e. if you feel uncomfortable after eating foods like spaghetti you most likely have acid reflux. On the other hand I have experienced that the more you clear your throat the more mucus is being produced and your throat will be very dry and sore when you keep clearing. I know, after a while you don't even notice anymore when you're clearing. I know try to swallow or drink something everytime I feel like mucus is stuck. What's the color of the mucus? Do you have a congested nose too?
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
I'm not sure about the posibility of acid reflux.  I'm not prone to heartburn, but on the occassions where I do take over the counter meds for heartburn it has not stopped the clogged breathing/choking.  I do get congested in the nose as well as lungs/chest and throat, and to me it seems like I produce too much phlegm immediately after eating and it blocks my air passages.  It does not seem to be related to heartburn, nor to specific foods.  I thought maybe this was more of a respiratory problem which is why I decided to post on this board instead of the gastric board.  I guess I will talk to my doctor and see where that leads me.  Thanks everyone for the input.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
Firstly Do you smoke?
Smokers suffer from an excess of pleghm although not normally associated with eating.
Secondly a reflux problem certainly can give you these feelings
but the lack of heartburn would make me question that.  
I have Asthma and when my asthma is bad I eat very little because the fuller I am the worse my breathing is - Infact just eating an orange can set it off!
Do go to the Doc and check this out it could be simply helped and there is no use suffering with it.


J.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
constant clearing of the throat may be a sign of Post nasal drip syndrome.  mY whole family has it, they all are always clearing their throats.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
Hi,

I used to have the problem of coughing and lot's of mucus after eating. If I laid down right afterward, the mucus would come up in my throat and it would feel as though I couldn't breathe. None of the over-the-counter antiacids helped me. It wasn't until I started taking Nexium that I got any relief at all. I also have post-nasal drip, so it was a combination of things that was causing the cough, but once I got those things treated, the cough and the mucus went away.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
Yesterday I rushed myself to the ER because I had 2 bouts of not being able to breathe, as my air ways were completely blocked by mucus that I tried to clear from my throat. This was made possible due to a severe sore throat. The MD told me it was due to nerves and then when the the third attack took place before his eyes the nurse wanted to suction my throat . He told her not to do it, while I struggled to regain my breath. I whooped and struggled for 10 seconds at least but slowly I regained my breath. He then Xrayed my throat and found it to be unobstructed. I had a fourth attack in the Xray room but i was able to spit the mucus out and regain breathing. He sent me home and since the sore throat has subsided, I have not had any more attacks. I am a 65 year old male. Can anyone help?
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
I have had exessive coughing and mucus after eating for about 5 years. I had GERD and had been sleeping with the head of the bed raised for 2 years. In 2000 my doctor found I had a large hiatal hernia. I had laproscopic surgery to correct my hernia. I no longer have any heartburn but still have the cough and mucus. I did notice that when I eat ketchup or some type of acidic food I get the cough and mucus but sometimes even drinking sweetened ice tea will give it to me. Any ideas?
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
I have exactly (to the letter) what Desertpoppy is talking about...excessive mucus after eating.  I constantly have to clear my throat to breathe.  It truly is horrible.  I'm 28 (female) and it started when I was 12 years old. The past year I have been aggressively seeking a solution.  It is so miserable after anything is ingested to have to clear your throat for the next 30 minutes.  It's exactly what Desertpoppy said "I do get congested in the nose as well as lungs/chest and throat, and to me it seems like I produce too much phlegm immediately after eating and it blocks my air passages. It does not seem to be related to heartburn, nor to specific foods."

I will detail what I have come across so far........
I went to an allergy/asthma doctor. I wasn't allergic to anything except a few weeds and some grasses.  I tested negative for asthma.  I then went to an ear/nose/throat doctor.  I had a CT Scan of my sinus.  I even ate a big meal, knowing it would activate the mucus.  I could hardly stay still for the scan, but at least they could possibly catch the problem in the act.  The scan looked fine, still no solution.  Then she looked down my throat with this long rubbery thing that went in through my nose.  She found a very thick sticky mucus covering my vocal cords.  I was happy to hear some evidence to my symptoms.  She had me take Pepsid AC (thinking it might be acid reflux/ heartburn), even though an Upper GI indicated I had no evidence of acid reflux.  Within the last couple of months I've been prescribed Protonic, then Nexium and Claritin D together and if that didn't help (which it didn't) take Nexium by itself.  I have 4 days left and it is not helping yet.  

I am so desperate to find an answer!  I am going to seek help at a local herb store.  I think I am also going to get a second opinion of the ear/nose/throat doctor.  If anyone has other directions or thoughts or possibly solutions to which I can explore, prevent or cure  please reply.  

Note:  I do not smoke--never have.  I have never experienced heartburn.

Force10
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
There are several possible suspects with regard to your symptoms. The most direct cause for long-term symptoms is probably an irritant affecting an existing inflamation (inflammation) in the lungs. The irritant can be a chemical or powder from an external source like pollution, construction, cleaning, mold spores, pollen, weather, smoking, dusty roads and people with horrendously unimaginable dandruff. Ok, I made up the last one. Or it can be from the caustic fumes from stomache acid as it flows unimpeded through a tired valve. The inflammation can be from either repeated exposure or massive exposure to the above, or it can be from some disease which affects the lungs.

After 9/11, I involuntarily put down my keyboard and took up the hammer. It's amazing how much airborne **** is involved in Home Improvement, both solid and chemical.
It didn't help that I was also a sculptor of sandstone.
What I have is a chronic bronchitis form of silicosis. One unprotected breath of paint fumes or concrete dust is paid for with a week of morning and after-meal sputum expectorating. Even without the silicosis, any foreign matter that gets through to normal lungs can cause an inflamation (inflammation) or wake a sleepy one.

What do you do? First, get the swelling down in the tubes or there will be permanent damage. Your doctor will have to help with that. Wear a dust mask designed for fine dust or a respirator if you are affected by chemicals. Find out if you have acid reflux desease and stay on the treatment. If you suspect it, then get the over the counter acid reducers and use them religiously. Acid reflux seems to like cycles too, so be diligent. Check your house for mold and watch the weather pollution reports to monitor any corellation with sputum production. If your doctor can't help or is disinclined to help...find one who will. It's your life.  Ask yourself where dust or chemicals might be coming from in your world. Type in the words "excessive mucus" in your Internet search engine and see what grabs you. Nobody knows you or trusts you like you do.

I'd tell you more, but I gotta spit.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&ie=ISO-8859-1&as_qdr=all&q=%22excessive+mucus%22&btnG=Google+Search
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
It sounds like we could form a support group - Mucus Producers of America United!  I have all that everyone here as described and it has become such an embarrassing problem that I don't want to eat in public!  And my profession is very public and social oriented.  I just know that it isn't GERD.  From all that I've read it seems that it is probably chronic postnasal drip.  Thank you because you have given me some ideas that I might try, including maybe taking an antihistamine a little while before a meal.  We might all give that a try and see how it works.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
I have excessive mucus and don't know how to cough it up i do believe its food allergies but when i catch a cold it gets worse what can you sugest i do what kind of treatment can i take for this. please help someone.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
I have had this problem for about 6 years.  It started out after I visited the Palm Springs area from Colorado (I have always lived in Southern Calif near the beach) except for a period of 5 years.  It started with a really weird stringy stuff at the back of my throat.  For years I accepted that I had post nasal drip. I have used everything you can think of.  Prescription, over the counter, etc.  Nothing ever helped.  I have always had a frog in my throat but now I have a feeling like something is stuck in my throat.  I have been to several different type of drs.  ENT, gastro, etc.  I am now living  in the palm springs area.  Now I have been diagnosed with a hiatal hernia and reflux.  I don't really get the stringy stuff in my throat but the phlegm is still there.  I get heartburn occasionally.  It is weird but when I get in the swimming pool and especially a hot tub I feel like I am going to suffocate. I also have respiratory issues.  Not severe but just enough to be a real pain in the neck.  I vote for a club for us 'MUCOUS MAKERS".  I am so sick and tired to going to the Dr. and health food stores.

Anyway, thought I would comment. I just found this site.
Have a good one!!!
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
Ok..I am not alone in this matter. I have been having this problem with excessive SNOT after eating or drinking (even water). I don't think it's GERD because I don't get the burn that would be associated with a GERD. From what I have read thus far, multiple people have this problem and have tried about everything to cure it. It's annoying as hell for me. Nothing is worse than eating and then having to constantly clear my throat for 30 minutes or more. It doesn't matter what I eat. Hell I can drink water and get this influx of mucous at times. It's really horrible when someone comes up to me and they talk to me and I try to talk back and I'm making this gurgling noise of SNOT on my voicebox. I hope someone comes up with a cure soon. I was told that Oil of Oregano will work, but thus far I've not stuck to it. I've got the (wild Mediterranean) Oil of Oregano capsules at $20 for a 60 count. I shall see if this works...
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
PLEASE READ MY RESPONSE TO "MILES B 09/15/2003 Q. PHLEGM BUILD UP IN THROAT-SINUSES CLEAR.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
I too have this throat clearing problem occuring roughly 30 minutes after eating and around one hour after arising from bed, since June 2001 (no previous problems prior to this date). I usually have three phases of throat clearing per day, one after breakfast, lunch, then supper. The mucus does not feel as if it approaching from the back of the nose (no post nasal drip sensation - that's not to rule it out though) - I'm not sure where it is coming from. Starts with mild constriction and a tickle at the base of my throat, and gradually turns into a build up of phlegm. I rarely cough up anything substantial, usually just something very small, cloudy colour and sticky. I have red spots at the back of my throat (pharangytis from phlegm).

Here is the order of diagnosis I've had so far:
- Asthma dx by MD (2001 - non-steriod inhaler - I consider a
   false diagnosis!..based on slightly low exhilation test)
- Sinusitis diagnosis by MD ( 2002 - tried antibiotic/steriod  
   spray combo but failed)
- Rhinosinusitis by ENT ( 2002 - Nasonex steriod spray failed)
- GERD by ENT (since Feb 2004 up to present day - Lansoprazole
   30MG per day - no significant improvement yet).

ENT has put an endoscope down my nose and said there was nothing to see. CT scans showed nothing. Even had a septoplasty December 2003 which did absolutely nothing. I've had allergy tests for grasses, trees etc but I'm not allergic, nor do I have any known stomach/digestion problems. I'm a 25 yr old male in the UK.

I'm 90% sure it's either PND or GERD but how can a definateley tell ? Anyone else had any joy at fixing this problem ?

This pretty much sums it up: www.doctorhoffman.com/xglobus.htm
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
I have had almost identical symptoms for almost 4 yrs!  I am a 32 yr old woman, and it seems like it all started after a nose injury/nosebleed.  It took forever to heal (months), kept bleeding, crusting, etc.  Eventually I ended up w/ a perforated septum, and it seems like ever since then, I have a literally CONSTANT need to cough up/get rid of ridiculous amounts of phlegm...particularly after eating or drinking anything at all.  It's so horrible, I don't know what to do!  I am a smoker, but was a smoker for years prior to this happening and never experienced anything like this.  I also often (several times daily), in addition to the constant phlegm/spitting issue, will cough up (not from lungs...I can sometimes actually feel it coming down through my sinus cavity...hurts if it's especially thick or sticky) brown and/or green little spots/chunks of sticky mucous.  What's strange is that it is often in little round, smooth/shiny-appearing pieces.  It's so gross!  The cough is accompanied by a definite "rattling" sound (my signal that these weird colored things will be in the sputum).  But like I said, it doesn't seem or feel like it's from my chest...just my throat and sinuses.  It's really disrupting my life more than ever, as it's getting worse all the time.  It's so embarassing, because it's often uncontrollable.  I'm sure many people think I have some kind of a nervous habit of constantly clearing my throat, and often can't wait to be alone in my bathroom or in my car so I can just let loose w/ the coughing and hacking to just GET RID OF IT!  What do I do?  I'm so worried...
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
For a the last year or so immediately after eating dinner I have to clear my voice for a good half hour or so. It feels like phlem, but when I try to cough it out there isnt any. On a doctor's visit for something else I mentioned this to my doctor and he said it was common. Now it seems worse than it ever and is very irritating/fustrating to the point where I am posting this message. I now get it after lunch time and sometimes I have to clear my throat once in a while during the day. I figured that it is from myself still having my tonsils and I have a habit of sleeping with a fan on, so I figured the cold air is causing my throat/tonsils to swell or something. I am tired of this and want to find out what I have to remedy this. Thanks for any help. Thank you.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
For a the last year or so immediately after eating dinner I have to clear my voice for a good half hour or so. It feels like phlem, but when I try to cough it out there isnt any. On a doctor's visit for something else I mentioned this to my doctor and he said it was common. Now it seems worse than it ever and is very irritating/fustrating to the point where I am posting this message. I now get it after lunch time and sometimes I have to clear my throat once in a while during the day. I figured that it is from myself still having my tonsils and I have a habit of sleeping with a fan on, so I figured the cold air is causing my throat/tonsils to swell or something. I am tired of this and want to find out what I have to remedy this. Thanks for any help. Thank you.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
For a the last year or so immediately after eating dinner I have to clear my voice for a good half hour or so. It feels like phlem, but when I try to cough it out there isnt any. On a doctor's visit for something else I mentioned this to my doctor and he said it was common. Now it seems worse than it ever and is very irritating/fustrating to the point where I am posting this message. I now get it after lunch time and sometimes I have to clear my throat once in a while during the day. I figured that it is from myself still having my tonsils and I have a habit of sleeping with a fan on, so I figured the cold air is causing my throat/tonsils to swell or something. I am tired of this and want to find out what I have to remedy this. Thanks for any help. Thank you.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
I have pretty much the same issue for about 3 years now. I was previously a "causal" smoker (weekends, occasioanlly during the week, peaking at maybe 2 packs a week), but have given up smoking for nearly a year now. I get this cough that feels like im trying to force something out of my throat (not the airway, i can still breath fine..). It is MUCH worse in the morning (especially in the shower...), and after eating. I also have a stuffed\runny nose that accompanies it. So when the cough acts up, my nose does aswell. It's pretty clear to me that it has something to do with the nasal fluid, but I don't have a solution. My doctor, while a very nice guy, is pretty set on just giving me antibiotics and sending me on my way (which didn't work, by the way).  I'd like to know if there is a way I can solve this myself?
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
A related discussion, mucus in the lungs and throat after eating! was started.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
A related discussion, Coughing up Flem (phlegm) After Eating was started.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
A related discussion, I felt like I was crayz was started.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
A related discussion, OK... me too was started.
Blank
581909_tn?1218035147
A related discussion, Allergy or GERD was started.
Blank
Avatar_m_tn
A related discussion, cough after eating was started.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
A related discussion, Dry mouth and mucus after eating was started.
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
A related discussion, Does anyone suffer from hoarseness in their voice? was started.
Blank
Avatar_n_tn
A related discussion, Mucous Choking After Eating was started.
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
A related discussion, Excessive phlegm or Saliva after Eating/Drinking was started.
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
A related discussion, Choking and mucus build up in throat was started.
Blank
Avatar_m_tn
A related discussion, Little Known Facts about Mucus after Eating was started.
Blank
Avatar_m_tn
A related discussion, Mucus-Respiratory Distress after Eating was started.
Blank
Continue discussion Blank
This Forum's Experts
242587_tn?1355427710
David Tinkelman, M.D.Blank
National Jewish Health
Denver, CO
Blank
Request an Appointment
MedHelp Health Answers
Blank
Asthma Tracker
Asthma Tracker
Start Tracking Now
Blank
Allergy Tracker
Allergy Tracker
Start Tracking Now
RSS Expert Activity
233488_tn?1310696703
Blank
New Cannabis Article from NORTH Mag...
Jul 20 by John C Hagan III, MD, FACS, FAAOBlank
242532_tn?1269553979
Blank
3 Reasons Why You are Still Binge E...
Jul 14 by Roger Gould, M.D.Blank
242532_tn?1269553979
Blank
Emotional Eating: What Your Closet ...
Jul 09 by Roger Gould, M.D.Blank