Chronic cough - occupational considerations

Chron Respir Dis. 2008;5(4):211-21. doi: 10.1177/1479972308095935.


Chronic cough is a common symptom in a wide range of respiratory conditions, and may also occur as a result of upper airway or gastro-esophageal problems. Whilst chronic cough of any cause may be exacerbated by work, in some cases it has a direct occupational cause, resulting from a harmful acute or chronic workplace exposure. Such occupational conditions may only be suspected by taking a detailed occupational history, and directly asking employed patients whether their cough improves away from work. Early and accurate diagnosis, linked with tailored drug therapy, modification of workplace exposures, and expert compensation advice is likely to offer the best outcome for this group of patients.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Chronic Disease
  • Cough / diagnosis*
  • Cough / etiology*
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Humans
  • Occupational Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Occupational Diseases / etiology*
  • Occupational Exposure / adverse effects*