Childhood habit cough treated with consultation by telephone: a case report

Cough. 2009 Jan 21;5:2. doi: 10.1186/1745-9974-5-2.


Background: Childhood habit cough has been treated successfully by making suggestions that it can be stopped, desensitization techniques, use of distractors, provision of rewards, and self-hypnosis. All of these techniques have involved personal contact between a health care provider and a patient.

Case presentation: A 5-year-old with cystic fibrosis was diagnosed with habit cough following evaluation by a pediatric pulmonologist and otolaryngologist. An expert in the treatment of habit cough provided instruction by telephone to the patient's mother regarding use of hypnotic techniques in this setting, which was associated with resolution of the cough within a week.

Conclusion: As this report describes a single patient, it is possible that his improvement was unrelated to the given advice. Therefore, it remains to be seen whether therapy by telephone for habit cough is applicable widely.