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Rebuttal: Cough Is an Expiratory Sound

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What is a cough was debated at much length in the European Respiratory Society’s Task Force on Cough Methodology. A definition favored by physiologists is “an inspiration followed by a characteristic expiration.” Clinicians involved in cough counting favor “an expiration with a characteristic sound.” Both are entirely arbitrary. We undertook a survey of clinicians and scientists working in the field and asked them to count examples of different coughs. The clinical definition was adopted by the majority and we suggest that it should be the gold standard.

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Correspondence to Alyn H. Morice.

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Morice, A.H. Rebuttal: Cough Is an Expiratory Sound. Lung 186 (Suppl 1), 7–9 (2008).

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