Epidemiology of chronic cough, management, quality of life

Cough is the most common symptom-related diagnosis associated with a clinician visit in the United States, according to John Russel, MD, who presented on the diagnosis and management of chronic cough during the Practical Updates virtual series of primary care 2022.

“Acute cough is one that lasts less than 3 weeks, then we have subacute cough that lasts 3-8 weeks, then we have chronic cough, and that’s what we’re going to focus on. […] is a cough that has lasted for more than 8 weeks,” Dr. Russel said.

Dr. Russel is chairman of the Department of Family Medicine and director of the family medicine residency program at Abington-Jefferson Health in Abington, Pennsylvania. He presented a session during the Practical Updates in Primary Care 2022 virtual series titled “Chronic Cough Essential Guidance for Optimal Diagnosis and Management in Primary Care,” with Albert Rizzo, MD, Pulmonary Physician at the Center for Virtual Health at ChristianaCare in Newark, Delaware; clinical assistant professor of medicine at Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and Chief Medical Officer of the American Lung Association.

The learning objectives of Drs. Russel and Rizzo’s presentation on chronic cough included:

  • How to identify and assess the mechanisms of chronic cough and the burden that chronic cough places on a patient’s quality of life.
  • How to apply current evidence-based guideline recommendations for the best assessment, diagnosis, and management of patients with chronic cough.
  • A summary of clinical data on current and investigational drugs for the treatment of refractory chronic cough or unexplained chronic cough.

In most cases, chronic cough represents a symptom of common respiratory and non-respiratory diseases. And when chronic cough persists despite treatment for these conditions, a systematic approach and consideration of neuromodulation, pharmacology and speech therapy are needed, Dr. Rizzo noted.

For more meeting coverage, visit the Practical Updates in Primary Care newsroom.

For more information on the PUPC 2022 Virtual Series and to register for upcoming sessions, visit https://practicalupdates.consultant360.com.

–Jessica Bard


Russel J, Rizzo A. Essential chronic cough advice for optimal diagnosis and management in primary care. Conference presented at: Practical Updates in Primary Care 2022 Virtual Series; September 7, 2022; Virtual.

Comments are closed.