My elderly aunt has large amounts of phlegm. What can be done to help this?

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my cousin and I have been taking turns taking care of our elderly aunt, who is 79. she has spells where she has dry heaves and chokes up a bunch of phlegm. and all day long she's spitting up phlegm. doesn't matter if she's sitting upright or not. she can walk around, however she's getting weak because food doesn't taste good to her. says it has a metal taste, or just doesn't set well. she really wants to eat, and tries. so far she's been given 2 kinds of nausea meds that do no good. next up they want to scope her esophagus. has anyone seen this before and is there anything that can help?

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Charrox, what caught my eye was when you wrote that your Aunt says food taste like metal.

With a metallic taste, it could be a taste disorder known as parageusia.... common causes include medications, multivitamins, and food allergies.

I was also thinking about acid reflux which can cause a terrible taste in one's mouth as the food comes back up from the stomach.

In any event, this MUST be relayed to the doctor so he/she can start looking for what is causing this problem.
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She might have dysphagia (sp?). Has she been seen by an ENT (Ear, nose, throat doctor/otolaryngologist)?
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Mom just got home from hospital has aspiration on hospice now. She can not expel the phlegm from her throat caused her to not be able to breathe. How can I get that phlegm out so it does not continue to accumulate ?
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the thing is, she's got in her mind that if she eats, she'll get sick. but she gets sick regardless of whether or not she eats. so we keep asking her to keep trying to eat, and sometimes she does, most times she won't. I went through kind of the same thing with my mom, and I'm seeing the doctors go through the same routines with my aunt, and we are getting the same results. I read an articles that geriatric medicine is at an all time low because it's one of the lowest paid. They depend primarily on Medicare. So, IMHO, that tells me that they are only in it 'for the money'. It's so hard to find a dr that will take the time to listen, try something new, etc. Especially in this town.
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she hasn't had pneumonia. she is on heart meds for a-fib. I'll ask a pharmacist about Musinex, if she can take that with the meds. She doesn't like Ensure or Boost, says it's too thick, so we'll try mixing it in with some skim milk or something. Any other ideas or suggestions would be great! Thanks!!!
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I had phenemonia (spelling?) as a child and this produces alot of phlegm but It is good she is expectorating (coughing it up). I also think this is a problem when you have congestive heart failure. I am definately not a doctor but these might be things to consider. I have asthma my self and sometimes an alergic reaction could cause phlegm. I have found that Musinex DM works great for phlegm coughs, dry's them up. I would check this with a DR. or pharmasist about combining meds. About the eating thing ensure is a great suppliment for nutrition, I know a caregiver who mixes ensure with ice cream and blueberrys, oatmeal, or anything that has nurtrition... blended and refreezes it. Honestly that has kept her Mom alive for a very long time. Hang in there!
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meant to add, also, that she is drinking up to six 8 oz glasses of water a day, along with some juices and tea.
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