Altitude-related cough

Cough. 2013 Oct 31;9(1):23. doi: 10.1186/1745-9974-9-23.


Altitude-related cough is a troublesome condition of uncertain aetiology that affects many visitors to high altitude. The traditionally held belief that it was due solely to the inspiration of cold, dry air was refuted by observations and experiments in long duration hypobaric chamber studies. It is likely that altitude-related cough is a symptom of a number of possible perturbations in the cough reflex arc that may exist independently or together. These include loss of water from the respiratory tract; respiratory tract infections and sub-clinical high altitude pulmonary oedema. The published work on altitude-related cough is reviewed and possible aetiologies for the condition are discussed.