Children who have continuing recurrence of cough and croup could be suffering from stomach acid reflux problems.

Croup or ‘Kali Khansi’ as it is called in local parlance is recognized by a loud cough that often sounds like the barking of a seal. It can cause rapid or difficult breathing, and sometimes wheezing. Croup is thought to be caused by a virus, but reflux acidity has been suggested as a possible trigger.

In gastroesophageal reflux disease, stomach acid causes swelling and inflammation of the larynx, which narrows the airway. It can trigger more swelling with any kind of viral or respiratory infection.

Identifying children with gastroesophageal reflux disease could help treat and improve recurring croup. It is unusual for a child to have three or more bouts of croup over a short period of time. These children need to be evaluated.

The same is true for adults also. Patients with non responding asthma should be investigated for underlying acidity as the cause of acute asthma.

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