Asthma UK community forum

GP just not helping!

My 3 year old son has had a rather bad cough for a couple of weeks now, particularly troublesome in the early part of his sleep and upon waking.

After a week I took him to the GP as I was worried because he was 'maxed out' on his inhalers ie the recommended 10 puffs salbutamol and 2 puffs atrovent, and we were only just managing to stay one step ahead of his asthma. (I do give over this if needed)

Phoned at 8am for an appointment and didn't get in til 11.30 by which time his cough had settled abit but was still present. The good news was no infection, he is prone to them, but the GP was a little less than helpful.

First when we entered I was greated with 'which is it chest or ears?' he suffers glue ear also, I was somewhat shocked by the attitude.

After the check he said 'up the becotide to double and carry on' I had already doubled it once now I had to double it again! so 4 times his usual doseage. I voiced my concerns and was left feeling very small and as if I had wasted his time by not increasing it further before making an appointment in the first place. When I said I didn't feel his asthma was controlled he kind of shrugged it off and repeated what had already been said.

What can I do? My son is ok at the moment, still coughing but has developed a little hayfever also so that's not really helping! I am very lucky in that he tells his pre school teachers if he needs his inhaler so I am carrying on as normal but it's awful that I can't do anymore to help him.

I know there are guidelines but that's all they are, guidelines, Doctors don't have to stick to them if they feel they are in control of the situation and happy to go beyond them. but it doesn't help set us troubled parents minds at ease does it?

Sorry to come on and have a rant but I am just lost at where to go from here.


3 Replies

if your son is taking full multi dosing (ie 10 puffs) he should be taken to hospital thats the guidlines!!!

i future i wouldn't tyake him to the gp as it sounds like he doesn't have a clue. increasing his preventer will not work as if takes a few weeks for the increased dose to get fully into his system.

if 10 puffs isn't lasting 4 hrs or not taking the symtoms away completely he needs to be checked out! he may need a corse of steriods or his blood oxygen levels may be low so if it was my child i would take them to hospital!!


Hi Sarah

Sorry to hear you're having a worrying time at the mo. Do you have an asthma nurse at the Gp's or are there more than one Gp at your surgery? If there is it may be an idea to see somebody different to your present doc. The surgery I go to has 7 dr's but I always see the same one, when she has been away and I have seen one of the others, they tell me I am too difficult for them to treat (I'm brittle).

At a time when you're unsure what to do you need reassurance not further worries. It is always better to be safe than sorry and you did completely the right thing about seeking dr's advice. Could you speak to yur health visitor about your problems?

Hope things get sorted for you



Thanks for your reply. Unfortunately the asthma nurse at the surgery won't see him due to his age! She says all she can do is check his weight and height because children at this age need the doctor.

We are only in a small practice and they have 3 gps there but it's pot luck as to who is in the day you need one. Unfortunately the one I feel I can talk to more without getting rushed out is never in when we need an appointment.

He is going ok at the moment and last night had a cough free night so he higher dose of preventer is now working, unfortunately high doses of becotide bring out the worst in my son so he is now suffering anger and aggression, can't win really can I ?

The doctor said to reduce it back once his cough has subsided but this is where we get into a visous cycle because after 2 or 3 weeks lowered he will become ill again. I am hoping that we have a summer like last year as he was lowered to 1 puff of 100mcgs becotide am and pm and was well from july-mid sept only needing salbutamol a little and absolutely no atrovent! Fingers crossed.


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