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Dr. David
Dr. David, Board Certified MD
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 45993
Experience:  Board Certified Physician
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Hello. Ive had my thyroid removed in 2000 with complications.

Customer Question

Hello.
I've had my thyroid removed in 2000 with complications. My vocal chords are both damaged,only one is moving a little bit. I have got a bad cold at the moment again and my problem is that have difficulty breathing as unable to cough up the mucus and feels like I am choking. I've seen a specialist in Bath few years ago and he looked at it with a camera and said there can't be anything done,just have to live with it. Is there anything that could dissolve mucus at all? Or can you please tell me about any group of people who I could contact?
Thank you for your help.
Eva.x
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. David replied 3 years ago.

Dr. David :

This is Dr. David

Dr. David :

I am sorry your doctors have paralyzed your vocal cords with your thyorid surgery.

Dr. David :

this is why you are aspirating and choking on liquids and phlegm as they are trickling into your lungs.

Dr. David :

you will eventually get a pneumonia with all of the fluid which is trickling into your lungs.

Dr. David :

there is nothing which will dissolve the mucous, but you can try mucinex which will thin out the mucous and make it easier to cough up.

Dr. David :

and when you cough up the phlegm you have to try to spit it out

Dr. David :

so you don't choke back on it.

Dr. David :

those little green pills were to do what? help thin out the mucous?

Dr. David :

they could have been pills with guaifenesin in them.

Dr. David :

this is the same medication which is in over the counter robitussin.

Dr. David :

there are specialty centers like in London probably and in the US where they can inject the paralized vocal cord to keep it stiff and midline so the other vocal cord can possibly move against it and help create a bit of a better voice for you and possibly help protect your airway a bit better.

Dr. David :

this is called sclerosing a paralyzed vocal cord.

Dr. David :

you would have to be seen at a university teaching medical center by an ENT doctor there

Dr. David :

hello?

Dr. David :

do you have any questions?

Dr. David :

also when you drink fluids, you have to be very careful of thin fluids. it is easier for thin fluids like water or coffee to trickle down into your lungs and cause you to cough.

Dr. David :

one way to help is to drink only think liquids like milk shakes or liquids thickened by thickeners.

Dr. David :

this can get some getting use to.

Dr. David :

do you have any questions?

Customer:

Thank you for your help. I am not too keen on milk shakes but drink a lot of juices now. Hope that is good too. Also a friend told me to eat more oranges as she thinks the acid will thin the mucus. Don't know if that is true.

Dr. David and other Medical Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Dr. David replied 3 years ago.
oranges really don't thin mucous, but have lots of good vitamin C to help your infection.

see if you can find mucinex at your local pharmacy. if not, try robitussin cough medication which will contain guaifenesin in it. and that will help thin the mucous. you have to drink lots of water when you take guaifenesin. thinning out the mucous will help you cough it up easier and hopefully you can spit it out and the mucous won't go back into your lungs.

juices are fine if you don't choke on the liquids. the best test to see if liquids you are drinking are trickling into your lungs is a barium swallow study. your doctor can order this to see if you are aspirating liquids. I bet you most likely are with a paralyzed vocal cord on both sides.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you very much for your help. I will get mucinex and will ask my gp to do that barium swallow study.


 


Eva.

Expert:  Dr. David replied 3 years ago.
I hope the mucinex helps

let me know what happens.