Stopping inhalers prior investigation. - Asthma Community ...

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Stopping inhalers prior investigation.

Spikedog66 profile image
12 Replies

I've waited a year for a hospital appointment and received a letter yesterday for a FeNO and Full pulmonary function tests with reversibility test. I have to stop Spiriva 72 hrs before no Seretide for 24 hrs and no ventolin for 6 hours prior. Im panicking to say the least I feel I will end up in hospital if I don't take my inhalers as I'm very unstable anyway I get breathless wheeze and cough very easily. My Gp increased seretide in October to 4 puff twice daily I've tried dropping back to 2 twice a day but I struggle. They won't see me unless consultant has "numbers" I've had asthma most of my life and copd for 12 years. I've never had these investigations before and really not sure what to do. Any advice will be appreciated. Thanks.

12 Replies
ReedB profile image

Hi, usually when I've had these letters it advises what to do if I feel I cant stop taking medication for whatever reason. Is there any such advice on yours? Could you call the hospital to ask? I'm sure the consultant will see you tests or no tests. If you're breathing is so unstable they are there to help.

Spikedog66 profile image
Spikedog66 in reply to ReedB

No advice just what to do beforehand. I've waited so long for this appointment for help I normally plod on... find here more help than the professionals to be honest. A previous letter stated consultant needed "numbers" before he saw me. This number could be dead!!! There's a number to ring on letter to cancel or if you have hearing or visual impairment I have both.. Basically dropping to bits. I will ring that and see what they say. Thank you.

ReedB profile image
ReedB in reply to Spikedog66

If you can't give up your meds then it's very much still worth going. Remember, the consultant is there to help so even without 'numbers' they will be able to see what state you're in and offer solutions.

I never react to the tests beforehand so there's never much to go on. My asthma only reacts to pollen and viruses so if I'm well, I'm well but when I'm not, I'm really not. Numbers aren't everything. Just be honest and tell them what's been going on.

Hope it works out well

Spikedog66 profile image

The letter states if you don't adhere to instructions they will not do the investigations so don't attend. I will see after easter bank holiday if I can speak to someone in the hospital. Thanks for your reply. Stay well.

risabel59 profile image

Hi Spike,I've been in the same situation. Panicking about stopping my medication prior to tests.

The advice that I was given by my consultant, was to try as hard as I can to stop. You can use ventolin as a stop gap the day before and up till 6 hours prior to the appointment. So I used a lot of that to get me through. It really is worth trying because they will get a much better idea of how to treat you.

Also it may mean you will qualify for one of the new biologic treatments, however if you can't do the tests you may have to wait still longer until you can do the tests. I would cross fingers and toes and hope that you can get through the 72 hours for spiriva and 24 for seretide.

Good luck, I hope you luck out with the consultant. Mine is all about numbers too. But he is fantastic.


Spikedog66 profile image

I will see appointment not until 11th may will maybe have a trial run. They upped my seretide to 4 puffs morning and night in October haven't been able to reduce it back to 2 since and have tried several times. My chest a mess, at times I take nebulisers too. Im not too good at the minute. I dont know this consultant so unsure what he's like. Thankyou anyway glad you managed.

Anselm198 profile image

I am unable to do the tests for a variety of reasons. I'm still seen by my Consultant. He sighs deeply and says he would like the numbers but 6 years in, we still carry on and he has added things into my treatment which have really worked.There are many others in the same situation. Just politely explain your situation maybe to his secretary, they are often the best people to help. Good Luck.

Spikedog66 profile image

Thanks for that I will speak to his secretary. Can I ask what medications you take if that's ok?

Pipsqueak77 profile image

Hi Spikedog66

I would agree with risabel59 in that you should try to give it a go if at all possible.

There are certain very effective asthma medications that you cannot gain access to if you don’t have the ‘ right’ numbers - so if you don’t have a go at the tests you will never know if you qualify or not. They might be life changing for you?

We all have to go through these procedures on our way to a correct asthma diagnosis and treatment regime.. and we all get worried about stopping treatment. However your cons wouldn’t ask you to do it if he really thought you were in danger.

Sometimes the stress and anxiety of over thinking the appointment can also be your worst enemy. So try to do the best you can with reducing as per instructions and try not to worry to much or over think the consequences.

It will be worth it in the end if you succeed!

Good luck🤞🤞😊👍

Spikedog66 profile image

Im going to give it a trial run and see how I go if I can't manage will ring and cancel but explain why. Someone else can have this appointment. I have other issues one being my heart and this consultant doesn't know me from Adam. They declined my appointment at first and when I asked why the secretary said only part of my letter was read and didn't realise I was as poorly so this doesn't fill me with a lot of faith so I just wanted to know people's opinion and experiences . Thanks for all your input I appreciate it.

Dogruff profile image

The two times I’ve done this I’ve been surprised that I managed better than I thought. I planned it so that I was off work the day before and so that I could take it easy. They will have a nebuliser ready for you if it is likely you will need it. First time she had it ready and ended up not doing the full tests because they got what they needed.

The reassurance given to me which helped is that it takes your lungs a few days to miss most of the medications. Anything with salmeterol would be noticed more quickly but you can use more of ventolin until a few hours beforehand.

Believe me, lungs can be complete liars and perfectly behave for these tests on occassion.

Spikedog66 profile image
Spikedog66 in reply to Dogruff

Thankyou for that information its made me feel a bit better. My lungs wont lie they are knackered. I know that without any tests. I've really struggled this past year have basically seen to myself I'm an ex children's nurse my Gp just presumes I know everything, I certainly dont!!! . I will take all medication with me I have a pocket nebuliser which is pretty good so if they don't have one Im prepared. He wants to give me montelukast but wanted this investigation because I have a heart problem. I have a few weeks to chew on about it and have a talk to myself but appreciate what you've said. Thanks again. x

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