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can asthma medication make your condition deteriorate - just fed up



Im still sort of stuck with the same symptoms and im not even getting any better since the addition of the third inhaler. Im still waking up with a headache, hyperventilating and have the heart palpitation (due to singluair) im not getting any better instead im developing more symptoms like a spasm feeling in my throat and a jaw ache below my ear.

im really fed up as it seems as though everytime i moan about my asthma it keeps getting 10 times worse? Can medication make it worse? that sounds odd but im on three inhalers and singulair and its still uncontrolled in a different way. I dont get nasty embarrasing attacks but i get the odd headache that travels around my head when i turn it then the odd ear and jaw ache im just a fed up - dont think i'll ever get back to normal..(cant even remeber a day when i was utterly healthy and happy anymore)

11 Replies

Ditto. Don't seem to have been right since chilly weather started back in December. Plus can't remembering having had a decent sleep since came back from holiday in September. Myself I'm blaming the building site just over our back fence and maybe volcanic ash. Suspect though, I'm in denial about how severe my asthma is becoming. The MILD label I've been clinging to - cos never been sleepover in costa and not under consultant either - is, since PF never out of Yellow Zone for over a year, probably not quite true.

GrannyMo W.F.K.O.


4 inhaler juggling in the next step!

I just fed up suffering i think i know my remedy to the morning issues i have as the third inhaler has drastically helped me during the day. Im so fed up - i want my life back! I've impressed myself at how much i have learnt about the medications and im almost at the stage where i've almost become my own doctor/pharmacist. Im impressed at how in tune i am with my own body - but i know im not sorted out yet!

Im sick of the inhaler routine im on. I seem to be fine during the day as i take three puffs of three different inhalers my issue is during the night im bad and that effects me every morning. Im so frustrated that three inhalers - one singulair tablet and my evil asthma is still in charge!

Im now even dredding going to the GP in case she gives me yet another one as i top up to seretide! (I think i might need this though - she has been totally right so far in terms of stepping it up! She added flixotide in the morning and its been a great help as a top up to the seretide. But what more can she give? Serevent?)

Grannymo, I agree im in denial about how bad my asthma is too that it dawned on me when my doctor was hesistating about giving me a course of antibiotics he was concerned about the combination of my cocktail of medications! Its when he said your on the highest dose available that i sat there and felt guilty about not paying attention to my mildly deteriorating asthma years ago!

Im just blaming myself for not making the GP's pay attention to this before i got here!


the propellent can contribute in a very small number of cases, but only temporary. The combination your on of Ventolin, Seretide and Flixotide plus Singulair is not that unusual, same as myself. You asked about adding in Serevent, well that wouldn't be an option and PCT's would start asking questions with Serevent and Seretide. You'd be far better off with Serevent and Flixotide and forget Seretide but you wouldn't really gain any benefit from it. I know earlier in the week I posted a max dose for clenil, should have said that once you get above a medium dose for steroids the improvements from the increased dose don't correspond. The graph diverges and at the top end dose for the steroid you only get maybe a 25% improvement in control compared to a ICS dose half the level.

There is not a lot more your GP can do for you and the next stage is a referral to a consultant.


hi woody,

I know i can understand why my GP's have still not reffered me to a consultant (although I have seen a hospital GP not sure if she's a consultant though!) - how much more suffering and nagging do i have to do? I understand its not their problem im suffering but im fed up with the suffering and all this extra work I have to do to make them refer me. I currently have the flixotide as a top up to seretide - but im really pleased how this has changed things around, but im just a tiny step away from getting the right set of inhalers and im fed up with the GP and the NHS doctor just not giving me a quick fix.

plus they (2 practice gp and hospital asthma doctor) have started to contradict each other and are getting me really confused with what to do. I have the dry powder accuhalers and im getting fed up with the new symptoms. I may ask for a switch to serevent and see how that goes?




Confused, Singulair may take (up to) 2 months to start working, so try to give the current combination a bit more time. It can be stressful but probably a good strategy is to wait and see - but keep an eye on the asthma in the meantime and see a doctor if your symptoms appear to be getting worse.

Edited in brackets.



I have been on singulair for about a 3 months now i think and seretide too (i did have a gap for a week or two from singulair as i had to get the heart palpitations checked out) Im due for a check up soon but im starting to think i need same sort of top up at night.

now that i have been on the flixotide top up for a few weeks my asthma is a lot more controlled during the day but its waking up with the hyperventilating sand horrible headache everyday thats getting on my nerves! I dont think i'll get this under control...its like asthma controls my life now. Im now an indoors type compared to the former outdoor shopaholic type of person.

im a little reluctant to switch as seretide has really worked for me but im getting excellent results with the top up idea but I wish there was a magic pill to fix everything in one go.


As others have posted, I think you need to give it more time for the singulair to work. I know nothing about this medication but if it takes 2 months to kick in then you have to persevere.

But, as I have just posted on another question you have asked, I do think, with all that you have posted on here, whether there is a serious possibility of you having too much medication which is actually making you hyperventilate.

The symptoms you describe - aching jaw, headaches - are classic signs of hyperventilation syndrome which, in itself, is a very serious illness. The headaches are the result of your body's Oxygen/CO2 levels been completely wrong.

If I take too much asthma medication, especially my long-term broncodilator or my emergency reliever, I have the same issues of headache and hyperventilation and no matter how much I try to slow my breathing, no matter how much I keep my mouth closed and breathe through my nose I cannot help but hyperventilate because, quite simply, my airways are TOO OPEN and I am losing too much CO2 - which results in headache, tight chest (When you hyperventilate and you lose too much CO2 from your body your chest airways tighten with the exact same feeling as asthma), palpitations, anxiety and full-scale panic attacks.

My asthma is up and down at different times of the year - in the Winter I have a nightmare with the cold constrciting my airways but, as the temps warm in the Summer, I, touch wood, get better. This means for me, for example, in the Summer I do not need my long-term broncodilator as much as I need it in the Winter - if I take it twice a day every day then I just hyperventilate and make myself ill.

Have you not talked to your GP about hyperventilation?

I am fortunate in that my GP is very aware that the symptoms of asthma and silent hyperventilation are virtually identical and virtually impossible to work out which is which.

The problem is that you are, and your GP for that matter, are convinced that everything is asthma related with you then if you are actually hyperventilating all that more and more medication is going to do is make you hyperventilate more and result in more sore throats, more aching jaws, worse headaches, tighter chests and, frankly, long-term chronic hyperventilation can kill you just as easily as asthma can.

There are probably thousands of people in the UK being treated for asthma who, reality, are silent hyperventilators.

You need to go back and have a serious talk with your GP.

Best of luck.



Confused, it may still be early days with Singulair - I'm staying optimistic as the time it takes to kick in varies for different people and you had found it helped in the past :).

There's a lot going on, but in the ""frequency of prednisolone 30mg thread?"" on 19th April you posted that the hospital doctor had added Singulair back in at a higher dose of 10mg (compared to 5mg chewable tablets in an older post). There was break of about a month in taking leukotriene modifiers after stopping Accolate around 20th March (""i am my own lab rat"" thread).


hi ginny & bob,

yeah your right there was a lot of playing around with the tablet - i forgot about the accolate saga! - Im so close to getting sorted out though. I intentionally now (only recently though) only see the one GP as the first practice doctor gave me singulair then i had the heart palpitations and he reduced it then switched it accolate..the Hospital GP switched it back to Singluair 10mg after i got a mouth ulcer problem. that was about 3 weeks off i think as i had two A&E trips between here I think and then decided to stick to singulair no matter what.

the thing is the singulair gives me really bad heart palpitations but does wonders for the whole rhinistis/sinusits thing that i will put up with that - but the hyperventialtion + heart palpitation + headache and jaw ache that building up thats making me feel a horrible first thing in the morning.

I haven't mentioned the hyperventialation to my gp so far as there so many complications the last few times. Im trying really hard to get back to normal that i have been more active this morning (this resulted in a attack and im on the ventolin again!) my patience is wearing out now its been almost 2 years now that my asthma kicked off (it all started off with one odd bout of sinusitis during hayfever season!)

in a nutshell, im depressed as it seems like im stuck like this. No matter what Im doing i end up right back here. Im just going round in circles but now stick to the one GP who seems to understand my frustration.


Finding the right combination of treatments is incredibly frustrating, I can empathise completely. Last time I went to my GP I was so tired and upset with it all that she ended up giving me a verbal quiz to see whether the situation was causing me to be depressed on top of everything else. Fortunately that wasn't the case.

You're right in learning as much as you can and the way you're really taking ownership of your treatment is positive, but I must add my voice to the clamour of those telling you to tell your GP about the hyperventilation. Write a list with everything you need him or her to know so that you don't get nervous and miss stuff out when you get in there if you think that will help. The GP can't help you with symptoms that they don't know you've got, after all!


I have list...

Hi wheezymutt,

I think i keep missing this out at every visit so this I have a list of things i have to mention. Im just on a real downer this weekend - i guess im coming to terms that this is something i have to live with and whatevers made it pole vault from ultra mild asthma to ultra manic asthma doesnt matter. Im stuck this way.

thanks everyone for the messages!

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