I live in the forest in Berkshire and the tree pollen is/was particularly difficult in 2009 I had a really bad year; it was particularly difficult to breathe with all the usual hay fever symptoms.
I have had chest/breathing problems since 1990. I have always been treated for Asthma and seasonal hay fever. I was referred recently to my local Chest Clinic, as my breathing problems became worse and none of the Asthma treatment seemed to work. Since then I have had several appointments with the Chest Consultant, he told me that he could find nothing other than Asthma and he could not explain why I couldnâ€™t breathe.
He too has always diagnosed/treated me for Asthma and seasonal hay fever. Over the years I have had, what my GP calls a â€˜bucketfulâ€™ of Prednisolone, all the known hay fever medications, and more recently antibiotics. In the last attempt by the Chest Consultant he decided that I should take Prednisolone and antibiotics together, which I did, no change. During that time I also had several chest x-rays, lung functions tests and a CAT scan; During the lung functions tests, I had a reaction to the medication the technician gave me in the middle of the tests to see if that changed anything. I was sweaty, heart rate was up and I had right side chest pains however, the following tests were better, but not great.
On my last appointment with the Consultant, he told me that I had Psychological problems and there was nothing more he could do. I thought he was condescending and patronising and I told him so. During this debacle I told him that the medication in the middle of the LFTâ€™s had actually helped me breath better. He grudgingly said that he would give me an anticholinergic bronchodilator but because it was for COPD and there was no way I had COPD because I had never smoked and because of that â€˜it would be of no help to meâ€™. He reluctantly prescribed Spiriva Respimat. I took this medication and the relief was almost instant, I had no chest constriction, I was able to breathe without having to think about it and after a day I had loads of energy back, and I feel so much better than I have for ten or more years. My question is was I miss-diagnosed? Is it possible to have COPD without having smoked?