Popping noise during inspiration


Q: Dear AskTheDoctor,

I have been experiencing a popping noise/feeling during inspiration. Although I don't get it every time I inhale, it seems to occur roughly 40 times throughout the day. I mentioned it to my GP and he said that it could be some mucus getting caught in the throat/esophagus. I would like a second opinion because I tend to focus on it and it bothers me.



A:   Your symptoms seem to be arising out of mucous hyper-secretion in the upper respiratory tract. This could be as a result of a hyper-reactive airway disease. You have also mentioned in your details about environmental allergies. I wonder if you have undergone an Allergy Skin Prick Test to decipher the same. If yes, you would have identified the specific environmental allergens to which you are sensitivity to. I would like you to share this information to enable us to suggest certain preventive measures. Exposure to specific allergens like pollens, moulds, dust mites, animal dander, etc. may cause hyper-secretion of mucous along with spasms in the airways leading to wheezing and sounds as mentioned by you. In the mean while, you may also get your Absolute Eosinophil Counts done and follow up with your treating doctor. All the best!

Comments / Follow Ups

Patient: I have undergone an Allergy Skin Prick Test, which made me aware I am allergic to environmental allergens as well as cats. I've also noticed that throughout the day I have this "congestion" and its worst at night when I try to sleep. At times it is very difficult to breathe through the night which effects my quality of sleep excessively. Are their any other preventative measures I can try to improve my sleep quality and fight off inflammation. I will be making an appointment with my treating doctor soon.

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