What kind of doctor should I see?
January 15, 2010 4:28 PM Subscribe
I have a persistent cough and WAY too many respiratory infections. What kind of doctor should I see? YANAD/YANMD, etc.
Over the past two years, I've had in the range of 8-12 upper respiratory infections per year. They generally clear up with antibiotics, only to come back within a month or two. When it's not infected, I have considerable post-nasal drip that inevitably turns into another bout of sinusitis or bronchitis. I am well-known as the person who is sick all the time.
I had a fairly persistent cough while growing up and typically got 1-2 URIs per year through high school and college (Seattle and Indiana). Then I moved to AZ, was great for about six months, then this started. I sometimes drive back to Seattle or Indiana and have noticed that about when I cross Oklahoma, I start feeling a lot better - the drip dries up and I feel great until I return to AZ. My thought is that it's something due to the dry, dusty air.
I've seen an allergist and had a skin test done for environmental factors but didn't react to anything (even mold and cats). He eventually diagnosed me with non-allergic rhinitis (and possibly a touch of asthma). Inhalers tend to help; I've used Nasonex and while it keeps me from being stuffed up, it doesn't particularly help. He put me on prednisone for about a week and it helped some. He comments that my nasal passages appear dry, red, and inflamed when I see him. My peak flow rate is normal and consistent. I've used a neti pot but not consistently; my husband says it helps, but I've lived with a cough for so long that I'm used to it, I guess.
I have good insurance. What can I do to combat this? What kind of doctor should I see (and, if applicable, recommendations for Tucson, AZ)?
I'm 24, female, in reasonably good health besides all this.