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Old 07-13-2013, 10:44 PM
EmAnJ EmAnJ is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2007
Why do I sometimes get a productive and painful cough after hard cardio effort?

I competed in a time trial this morning and a criterium this afternoon (road cycling). For those that don't know, the time trial is a serious all out individual race for time, and a crit is similar but more of a group effort with a few slack periods so not quite as tough but still a sustained effort. After my time trial this morning, it felt like my lungs were bleeding and it took about 45 minutes for the burning sensation to stop, or at least become tolerable. I had a bit of a cough and some minor pain but not too bad by the time the crit started this afternoon. Since the crit, I've developed a painful but productive cough and a bit of a wheeze.

This has happened before in cycling races and also happened once or twice years ago when I first started running (and was out of shape). Why? Someone at some point told me it was something to do with lactic acid but I wasn't satisfied with that explanation. What is the medical reason for this?

I'm not a one off, by the way. Many of the other ladies and gents in the race this morning were commenting on their burning lungs and a few of us had coughs this afternoon. It just happens in hard, all out efforts like this.
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  #2  
Old 07-13-2013, 10:58 PM
Chief Pedant Chief Pedant is offline
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IMHO, it's difficult and probably not appropriate to give you a very specific tentative diagnosis.

General reasons for your symptoms can include exercise-induced bronchospasm, cardiace ischemia, or irritation from polluted air.

However it could also be something as benign as simple over exertion, drying out of the airways, and a cough/burning secondary to irritation of the airways.

Last edited by Chief Pedant; 07-13-2013 at 11:01 PM..
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Old 07-14-2013, 12:16 AM
Wesley Clark Wesley Clark is offline
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As a WAG it could be exercise induced asthma.
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