Avatar universal

Chronic nighttime cough in 4 year old

My 4 year old son coughs constantly at night.  It's a dry, hacking cough which does not bring up any phlegm.  It doesn't sound "sick" at all--it's the type of cough I wouldn't even notice except that he does it so frequently.  During the day, often when he laughs or cries, it turns into the same dry, hacking cough.  Otherwise, I haven't noticed that he does much coughing during the day.

Does this sound like asthma? He has never wheezed or had difficulty breathing.  Maybe cough-variant asthma? If it does sound like that's what it is, is there any way to diagnose it in such a young child?

He had severe RSV at age 15 months (had to be intubated and spent some time in the PICU) and we were told that this might eventually lead to asthma.  I'm wondering if this could be related to the RSV.

4 Responses
242588 tn?1224271700
This could be asthma and it could be related to the respiratory syntactical virus (RSV).  However, you or your son’s doctors should not assume that asthma or cough-variant asthma is the diagnosis.  Other causes of nocturnal cough should be investigated including, but not limited to, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), chronic rhinitis and sinusitis and cystic fibrosis (CF).  He may need to be seen by a pediatric pulmonologist.
306245 tn?1244384967
When my 4 year old had RSV when he was 5 weeks old, also on a vent for 11 days, (he had RSV a second time when he was 2 1/2 in the hospital 5 days no vent.) they said he could end up having asthma. Every time we go see the pulmonologist *sorry if I spelled it wrong, they ask how often does he couh at night. None, doen't cough in the day time either only when he is sick.
So from what I was told and understand it does sound like he has asthma. I was also told that being on a vent at such a young age also could cause him lung dameage. he was on a vent 2 tomes in less then 4 months one forRSV the other for his heart surgery)
Good luck and I hope things will work out
Avatar universal
Thanks for replying.  I just spoke with his pediatrician about it and she thinks that since we're a very atopic family, it's reasonable to assume that it's RAD or asthma.  She wants us to start Singulair every evening and if that doesn't help, we'll try inhaled steroids.  If either of those is effective, she says we can assume it's asthma.  Does that sound right to you?
Avatar universal
Thanks for that info.  

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