16 January 2019 At the hospital

World-first research to redefine wet cough treatment

A cough is the single most common reason for children to present to GPs, which is why the Children’s Hospital Foundation has awarded Children’s Health Queensland’s Professor Anne Chang $299,400 for her world-first clinical trial into treating wet cough.

Professor Anne Chang has been researching the optimal duration of antibiotics required to treat wet cough and prevent it coming back for the past two years. Her latest study aims to determine whether four weeks of oral antibiotic treatment is more effective in resolving cough and preventing its recurrence than a two-week course.

The results of this clinical trial, involving around 100 children, will be incorporated into national and international clinical practice guidelines, and change the way doctors around the world treat children with this condition.

Professor Chang’s previous work found that some children with prolonged wet coughs had bacteria in their lungs, and suffered from a syndrome called protracted bacterial bronchitis (PBB). When not treated properly, PBB progresses to chronic lung disease and bronchiectasis. Currently, the duration of antibiotics required to treat PBB effectively is not definitively known, which can have negative implications for the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

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