Whats next?

Im really fed up at the mo. ive been bad with my asthma since well before christmas, following a cold/ chest infection. dr says chest is now clear but my peak flow is still 100 lower than normal and im more breathless than i should be. I have had 2 short courses of pred this year which have made a difference while im on them but as soon as i stop, im back to normal again. my dr (a new one - moved recently) seems absolutely useless and all he wants to do is keep giving silly courses of pred. please can someone tell me if this is right? i would have thought that he should now be thinking of something more long term??? thanks

3 Replies

  • I have had this discussion with some one this week, GP only work on the quick get them happy for now basis. So if you want to think about long term you have to make an appointment to see your GP and as soon as you walk in the room say i want to discuss long term asthma management and refuse to leave room till you are satisfied and have an agreed plan of action.

    Hope you manage to see your GP and get it sorted.


  • A GP Speaks...

    It may seem like GPs only practice in the here and now, but often they have a longer ""ball-game"" in mind - but we may not get the opportunity to put it into practice. As a patient I am probably also guilty of only visiting for ""fire-fighting"" - when things take a turn for the worse - but then, I have the long-term benefit of medical and GP training to sort my own asthma out! With my other ""hat"" on, I am often frustrated by only seeing people for ""fire-fighting"" as I never then get the opportunity to discuss long-term care with them. It's often inappropriate, for example, to be thinking about other long-term options when the priority is to sort out the acute problem - I might need to see how you respond to this treatment, or to that treatment, or maybe we need to clear an infection before there is any point in doing anything else. I do try to get people to come back and chat about the bigger/longer term picture, but it's not so often that my invitation to return is accepted, and I see the patient again when the acute problem has resolved.

    Anyhow. It sounds like Oxanna's acute problem isn't fully resolving after a couple of courses of pred, so it's always worth going back. Have a chat with your GP - we are human beings after all - and ask what's next, what they have in mind. Sometimes it can seem like we're a gazillion miles away and not really listening, but believe me, there are always a few hundred possibilities, diagnoses, plans and doses running through your mind when you see a patient, and we *are* listening to what you're saying, even if sometimes we have to ask you to repeat something or clarify an issue. Don't go in on the offensive - I'm sometimes a bit perturbed when people advocate going in and ""demanding"" this or that - you don't need to demand, just ask! We aren't mind-readers, and we are very human, so sometimes you need to tell us exactly what you had in mind, what you're worried about, and what you would like. What might be an entirely routine GP problem for me might be something major for you that you're worried needs to be seen by a specialist. It's not until you ask about referral that I'll realise that I need to explain it may not need referral.

    Hope this helps a bit, by putting ""the other side of the story""!


  • Have been in exactly the same boat since mid-November. I know I should probably go back to GP but feel embarrassed. Keep waiting and waiting for breathlessness to improve - but so far nothing. I have also had antibiotics and 2 courses of Pred. Same applies, symptoms OK when on them and recur as soon as they are stopped.


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