Department of Respiratory Medicine, Kyoto University, Shogoin, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto, 606-8507, Japan; Department of Respiratory Medicine, The Tazuke Kofukai Medical Research Institute Kitano Hospital, 2-4-20 Ohgimachi, Kita-ku, Osaka, Japan; Department of Internal Medicine, Japan Baptist Hospital, 47 Yamanomoto-cho, Kitashirakawa, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto, 606-8273, Japan
A 15-year-old girl was referred with a 2-year history of perennial non-productive cough, which had been preceded by Mycoplasma pneumoniae pneumonia and subsequent asthma. Symptoms were only partially responsive to anti-asthma treatment including an inhaled corticosteroid and a leukotriene receptor antagonist. The patient's BMI was 27.8; she had gained over 10 kg in the previous two years. Typical symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease were not evident except for belch. Coughing worsened on eating and rising from bed. Although esophagography failed to disclose reflux esophagitis, esophageal pH monitoring revealed significant acid reflux. Asthma was considered well controlled. Treatment with the proton-pump inhibitor rabeprazole resulted in disappearance of cough. Frequency Scale for the Symptoms of Gastroesophageal reflux disease (FSSG) score, a questionnaire evaluating the symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease, was initially high but normalized after treatment. Capsaicin cough sensitivity also diminished with treatment. Chronic cough due to gastroesophageal reflux disease has been considered rare in adolescents, but this condition might be increasing in line with the recent trend in adults. Clinical features of gastroesophageal reflux disease-associated cough typical for adult patients and a specific questionnaire for evaluating gastroesophageal reflux disease validated in adults may also be useful diagnostic clues in adolescents.
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