Looking to find answers for the latest Covid symptoms – the barking cough? Here is the union of Western and Chinese Medicine to help you navigate your way through health choices.

“During the Omicron surge, pediatricians and emergency departments (EDs) began noticingCovid Barking Cough something new: a surge in croup among infants and young children. Marked by a distinctive “barking” cough and sometimes noisy, high-pitched intakes of breath, croup can happen when colds and other viral infections cause the voice box, windpipe, and bronchial tubes to become inflamed and swollen.”

Nancy Fliesler, Health and Parenting, Research

“In clinical practice, especially during the winter, many cases of cough come into the clinic. One should think about the possibility of pertussis in the following circumstances. The first consideration is whether there are reported outbreaks of pertussis in your community. The second consideration is whether the patient has had the cough for longer than two or three weeks. Third is whether the patient has “cough attacks” of repeated coughing, ending in the inability to catch one’s breath, with a long inspiration followed again by coughing. The cough tends to be a sharp bark, similar to that observed in croup, and is more pronounced at nighttime.”

-Jake Paul Fratkin, OMD, LAC

Starting with the Omicron variant, some children and adults were experiencing a whooping cough with their symptoms. It is common in the Omicron and subsequent variants.

In Western Medicine, there is a vaccine for whooping cough. Because it is viral, there is little else that can be done for it.

In Chinese Medicine there are a whole range of herbs and formulations based on the different stages of cough. Jake Fratkin writes an excellent article on the different stages and the different formulas you can use in these stages.

As this latest surge of BA2 has been exploding in Washington State, I’ve seen many individuals come in with what they would term “horrible sinuses and fatigue” to a full-on barking cough and difficulty breathing.

This is very different than the previous strains and I have been excited to see the BA2 can be treated with formulas that are commonly used for colds and flu as these formulas focus on the bronchi instead of the lungs. It’s interesting to note the formulas Jake Fratkin references are the formulas where I am finding most of my success.

The previous strains of Covid took very strong herbs to pull this out of the lungs. It was in much deeper than the bronchi. As the patient improved, the formulas needed to be changed as much as four or five times based on what was happening with their symptoms.