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Colds and allergies may produce mucus that drains down the back of the throat (postnasal drainage). Home treatment may be all that is needed to provide relief if you have a productive cough and postnasal drainage but do not have other symptoms.
A productive cough in a person who smokes is often a sign of lung damage. For smokers, the most effective way to treat a cough is to stop smoking. A change in the cough or in the color or quantity of sputum may mean a bacterial lung infection.
A productive cough is a more serious when:
A doctor can evaluate your symptoms and recommend appropriate treatment.
|Primary Medical Reviewer||William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine|
|Specialist Medical Reviewer||David Messenger, MD|
|Last Revised||December 21, 2011|
Last Revised: December 21, 2011
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & David Messenger, MD
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