My vocabulary is pretty good, I think (although I recently learned "metonymy" and I'm keen to find a place to use it). But I was stumped today.
I went to visit the doctor, we're still working on clearing up the last vestiges of my Dreaded Lurgi. I have a bit of a wheeze, sometimes and a bit of a cough, and slight phlegm. The doctor calls it "asthma".
So the doctor asked me to describe how it felt, and I explained about the intermittent wheeze, and that I'm coughing a bit more than I'd expect to, and then I tried to describe the other symptom, and I had a problem.
The word is "chaiseriche". That's a word I learned from my mother, and I'm guessing that it's yiddish but I don't actually know that. It's the word I've always used to describe this feeling, and ladysolly doesn't know what it means (and nor did the doctor, of course). But I can't think of an English word to describe the tickly-hoarse-coughy sensation that is encapsulated in "chaiseriche".