Diagnosis and treatment of patients with non-acid gastroesophageal reflux-induced chronic cough

Xianghuai Xu, Li Yu, Qiang Chen, Hanjing Lv, Zhongmin Qiu


Gastroesophageal reflux (GER) is one of the most common causes of chronic cough, and chronic cough due to GER represents a subtype of GER-related diseases. Gastroesophageal reflux-induced chronic cough (GERC) can be divided into two subgroups based on the pH of the GER. Nonacid GERC is less common than acid GERC, and its diagnosis and treatment strategy have not been standardized.However, nonacid GERC usually presents with its unique set of characteristics and features upon diagnosis and treatment in the clinic.Although the underlying molecular mechanism of nonacid GERC is not fully understood, it is considered to be associated with reflux theory, reflex theory and airway hypersensitivity. Multi-channel intraluminal impedance combined with pH monitoring is a promising new technique that can detect both acid and nonacid reflux, and our findings as well as those of others have shown its usefulness in diagnosing nonacid GERC. Development of new diagnostic techniques has led to an increased rate of nonacid GERC diagnosis. We summarize our experience in the diagnosis and treatment of nonacid GERC and provide a guide for future therapeutic approaches.

Key words: Chronic cough, multi-channel intraluminal impedance combined with pH monitoring, nonacid gastroesophageal reflux

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