Important drugs for cough in advanced cancer

  title={Important drugs for cough in advanced cancer},
  author={Jade Homsi and Declan Walsh and Kristine A. Nelson},
  journal={Supportive Care in Cancer},
Abstract. Cough is a defense mechanism that prevents the entry of noxious materials into the respiratory system and clears foreign materials and excess secretions from the lungs and respiratory tract. In advanced cancer, it is a common symptom that interferes with the patient's daily activity and quality of life. Empiric treatment with antitussive agents is often needed. Two classes of antitussive drugs are available: (1) centrally acting: (a) opioids and (b) nonopioids; (2) peripherally acting… 

Chronic cough

  • B. Wee
  • Medicine
    Current opinion in supportive and palliative care
  • 2008
The availability of simple assessment tools places the imperative on clinicians to be more systematic in assessment of cough and its interventions, and the mainstay of oral therapy for symptom control remains dextromethorphan, codeine and morphine.

Management of cough in advanced cancer.

Managing cough is directed at correcting the reversible causes, and hydrocodone is preferred as first-line empiric treatment, but when the cough is resistant to this, the second-line therapy would be the addition or substitution of benzonatate.

Shortness of breath and cough in patients in palliative care.

In most patients, shortness of breath and cough can be relieved by a series of therapeutic measures, and opioids, including morphine and dextromethorphan, are effective antitussants with low toxicity.

Chronic Cough Due to Lung Tumors

Goals/objectives: To review the scientific evidence on cough associated with tumors in the lungs. Methods: MEDLINE literature review (through March 2004) for all studies published in the English

Chronic cough due to lung tumors: ACCP evidence-based clinical practice guidelines.

The scientific evidence on cough associated with tumors in the lungs is reviewed, showing that lung cancer is the cause of chronic cough in <or=2% of all patients who present with a chronic cough.

Levodropropizine in the Management of Cough Associated with Cancer or Nonmalignant Chronic Disease–A Systematic Review

The authors conclude that the evidence for the antitussive efficacy of levodropropizine in these patients is scarce, and is further limited by the methodological weaknesses of the primary studies.

Pharmacological modulation of cough reflex

Interventions for cough in cancer.

Overall, there was an absence of credible evidence and the majority of studies were of low methodological quality and at high risk of bias, suggesting that possibly the lowest effective dose should be used to minimise side effects.




  • S. Simon
  • Medicine
    Journal of the American Geriatrics Society
  • 1960
This paper concerns itself with the results of a double-blind study to assess the value of benzonatate when used in this liquid form to add the antitussive agent to a cough mixture rather than give two such medications separately.

Benzonatate for opioid-resistant cough in advanced cancer

It is reported three patients with an opioid-resistant cough who achieved symptomatic relief with the peripherally acting nonopioid drug benzonatate.

Efficacy and safety of levodropropizine and dihydrocodeine on nonproductive cough in primary and metastatic lung cancer.

The antitussive effectiveness of levodropropizine is confirmed and a more favourable benefit/risk profile when compared to dihydrocodeine is suggested.

Management of dyspnea and cough in patients with cancer.

A phase II study of hydrocodone for cough in advanced cancer

Cough severity, frequency, associated symptoms and complications, and activities of daily living improved significantly and a starting dose of 10 mg per day in divided doses seems effective.

Hydrocodone for cough in advanced cancer

The highest median duration of treatment was for esophageal cancer and the highest median maximum daily dose and total dose were for treating kidney cancer, while lung cancer as a primary cancer site was strongly related to the use of hydrocodone.

Dextromethorphan and Codeine: Objective Assessment of Antitussive Activity in Patients with Chronic Cough

Dextromethorphan, the most widely used cough suppressant in the U.S.A., was compared with codeine in a double-blind, crossover trial and was considered the better antitussive by the majority of patients.

Fixed-drug eruption due to dextromethorphan.

A healthy 45-year-old woman who had been using antitussive drugs containing dextromethorphan for two or three periods of 2 to 3 weeks a year developed an erythematous patch, 3 cm in diameter, on her right upper arm in March 1989.

Management of Intractable Cough

The patient diedpeacefully and free of cough, 16 days after the last dose of narcotic treatment, with very successful coughcontrol.

Symptom control in advanced cancer: important drugs and routes of administration.

This article will discuss some drugs presently available to achieve good symptom control, and the list presented here is not exhaustive, but does reflect core drugs currently available in the United States.