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July 14, 1978

Technique of Coughing

JAMA. 1978;240(2):109. doi:10.1001/jama.1978.03290020031007

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To the Editor.—  I am subject to attacks of allergic asthma complicated by bronchitis. I discovered a technique for coughing that has served me well in clearing large numbers of mucus plugs.The technique consists of exhaling as completely as possible (really forcing the air out), coughing hard a couple of times (with all the air completely expelled), taking in a small amount of air, coughing again a couple of times, taking in a little more air, coughing again, taking in still more air, coughing again, and so on, until I was taking in large amounts of air and coughing in the usual way. As I was doing this, I could feel the secretions moving up my bronchi and being coughed out.This technique may already be described or be in widespread use, but I have never heard of it.