Chronic Cough

What's causing your chronic cough? Rush experts begin by pinpointing the reason for persistent coughing, whether it's asthma, allergies, GERD or another issue.

What's causing your chronic cough? Rush experts begin by pinpointing the reason for persistent coughing, whether it's asthma, allergies, GERD or another issue.

What's causing your chronic cough? Rush experts begin by pinpointing the reason for persistent coughing, whether it's asthma, allergies, GERD or another issue.

Everybody coughs when the nerve endings in their airway get irritated. But a cough becomes chronic, or persistent, when it lasts eight weeks in an adult or four weeks in a child. Chronic cough gets in the way of everyday life and can make it hard to sleep or rest.

If your cough, or your child's, has gone on for weeks, it's time to get checked by your primary care doctor or pediatrician. If you or your child is having trouble breathing, call 911 or go to the nearest ER right away.

What Causes Chronic Cough?

Chronic cough isn't a disease by itself, but a symptom of something else. The most common causes include the following:

Other causes that are less common include the following:

Your cough could have more than one cause, so it's important to see a physician who specializes in diagnosing and treating chronic cough and can give you a thorough assessment.

Diagnosing Chronic Cough

Diagnostic tests to find the cause of chronic cough might include the following:

  • Bronchoscopy or endoscopy for a close-up look at your lungs or throat
  • Imaging, such as an X-ray of your chest or a CT scan of your sinuses
  • Lab tests to check for infection, including blood tests, sputum tests and nasal or throat swabs
  • Lung function tests to see how well you're breathing

Chronic Cough Treatment at Rush

Specialists at Rush who treat the causes of chronic cough include allergists and immunologists; gastroenterologists; ear, nose and throat (ENT) experts; and pulmonologists.

Treatment for Adults

It's possible that you'll see more than one Rush specialist. For example, if you have GERD, you may see both a gastroenterologist and an ENT. Or, if you have more than one airway condition, the Rush Sinus, Allergy & Asthma Center gives you a one-stop location for coordinated care. Our physicians share information and work together to make sure you have a seamless experience and get the right treatment quickly.

Your treatment will depend on what's causing your cough. Potential treatments include medications such as antihistamines, decongestants, acid blockers and inhalers, or surgical treatment if you have an airway blockage. If you smoke, we'll give you the help you need to quit.

Treatment for Kids

Rush offers specialized care for children with chronic cough in the Pediatric Aerodigestive Program, where pediatric ENT, gastroenterology and pulmonology specialists work together on a thorough evaluation, a personalized treatment plan and any support your family needs.

Rush Excellence in Chronic Cough Care

  • Expertise to help you breathe easily again: Many cases of chronic cough are straightforward to diagnose and treat — but if yours isn't, you have the power of our expert team on your side. Our specialists work together to pinpoint the right diagnosis and coordinate the complex care you need.
  • Specialized care for kids: If your child has a chronic cough related to a complex condition, the pediatric ENTs, pulmonologists and gastroenterologists in Rush's Pediatric Aerodigestive Program provide seamless multidisciplinary care that meets your family's needs.
  • Convenient access to care: With locations throughout Chicago, Aurora/Fox Valley and the western suburbs, you can schedule appointments with some or all of your care team close to home.

Chronic Cough Locations

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Chicago

University Consultants in Allergy and Immunology

1725 W Harrison St
Professional Building - Suite 117
Chicago, IL 60612

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Hours:

Mon – Wed: Closed
Thu: 8:30 am – 11:30 am Immunotherapy Shot Clinic hours: 8:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Fri – Sun: Closed
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Rush Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery

1611 W Harrison St
Orthopedic Building - Suite 550
Chicago, IL 60612

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Hours:

Mon – Fri: 7:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sat – Sun: Closed
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Rush South Loop exterior

Rush South Loop

1411 S Michigan Ave
Chicago, IL 60605

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Hours:

Mon – Fri: 7:00 am – 7:00 pm
Sat: 8:00 am – 4:00 pm (only for MRI)
Sun: Closed
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Pulmonary Medicine

1725 W Harrison St
Professional Building - Suite 054
Chicago, IL 60612

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Hours:

Mon – Fri: 8:00 am – 4:30 pm
Sat – Sun: Closed
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University Gastroenterologists

1725 W Harrison St
Professional Building - Suite 207
Chicago, 60612

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Hours:

Mon – Fri: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sat – Sun: Closed
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Rush River North exterior

Rush River North

539 N Dearborn St
Chicago, IL 60654

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Hours:

Mon – Thu: 7:00 am – 7:00 pm
Fri: 7:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sat: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm (X-ray and lab hours detailed below)
Sun: Closed
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Pediatric Aerodigestive Clinic

1750 W Harrison St
708 Kellogg
Chicago, IL 60612

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Hours:

Mon – Wed: Closed
Thu: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm First and third of the month
Fri – Sun: Closed
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Pediatric Specialty Care - Rush University Children's Hospital

1725 W Harrison St
Professional Building - Suite 710
Chicago, IL 60612

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Hours:

Mon – Fri: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm Evenings after 5 p.m. by appointment only
Sat: By appointment only
Sun: Closed
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Aurora/Fox Valley

Rush Copley 2040 Physician Office Building

Rush Copley Medical Group ENT Aurora Ogden

2040 Ogden Ave
Suite 301
Aurora, IL 60504

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Office Hours:

Mon – Fri: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sat – Sun: Closed
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Rush Copley Healthcare Center

Rush Copley Medical Group ENT Yorkville

1100 W Veterans Pkwy
Suite 310
Yorkville, IL 60560

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Office Hours:

Mon: 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Tue – Thu: Closed
Fri: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sat – Sun: Closed
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Rush Copley Heart Institute

Rush Copley Pulmonary and Sleep Medicine, a Department of Rush Copley Medical Center Aurora Ogden

2088 Ogden Ave
Suite 250
Aurora, IL 60504

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Office Hours:

Mon – Thu: 8:00 am – 4:30 pm
Fri: 8:00 am – 3:00 am
Sat – Sun: Closed
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Oak Brook

Rush Oak Brook exterior

Rush Oak Brook

2011 York Rd
Oak Brook, IL 60523

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Hours:

Mon – Thu: 7:00 am – 5:00 pm
Fri: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sat: 8:00 am – 12:00 pm (Every first and third Saturday; for MRI, 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. every Saturday)
Sun: Closed
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Oak Park

University Gastroenterologists - Oak Park

610 S Maple Ave
Rush Medical Office Building - Suite 5500
Oak Park, IL 60304

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Hours:

Mon – Fri: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sat – Sun: Closed
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Rush Oak Park Physicians' Group Pulmonary Medicine

610 S Maple Ave
Rush Medical Office Building - Suite 4600
Oak Park, IL 60304

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Rush Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery - Oak Park

610 S Maple Ave
Rush Medical Office Building - Suite 3700
Oak Park, IL 60304

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Hours:

Mon – Fri: 7:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sat – Sun: Closed
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Pediatric Specialty Care - Rush Oak Park Hospital

610 S Maple Ave
Rush Medical Office Building - Suite 3440
Oak Park, IL 60304

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University Consultants in Allergy & Immunology

610 S Maple Ave
Rush Medical Office Building - Suite 5500
Oak Park, IL 60304

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