Rant is this normal?

As a life long asthma sufferer I don't tend to deal with my gp often as I attend the hospital and have done for years. A close friend has just been diagnosed with asthma, got given a ventolin inhaler a course of pred and no follow up. I was appauled that they hadn't showed her how to use the inhaler or given her a aerochamber to use it with. No peak flow or appointment with the surgeries asthma nurse. She is still having problems desite the pred finishing. I suspect she's not getting full relief from her inhaler as no one has shown her how to use it. I just find this very frustrating at the lack of education she has been given. I suppose as an adult they presume she can deal with it, just makes me mad grrr!

Have others had similar experiences?

8 Replies

  • That is dreadful. I'm disgusted that they would give a diagnosis of asthm and then send her off with pred and ventolin and no follow up!!!

    If I were your friend I would be complaining vociferously.

  • Doesn't sound like great service! Mind you, no-one recently has shown me how to use an inhaler (they did when I was diagnosed at 7, but now they just rely on the leaflet I think).

    I have to wonder though...Ventolin and straight to pred? That sounds a bit odd, what happened to the add a reliever, then add a LABA if reliever not working? Did they tell your friend why they were hopping straight to pred? It just seems a bit odd to be on Ventolin and pred with nothing else!

    Your friend should defo go back, maybe see a different GP if possible and ask to see the nurse. Being an adult obv doesn't mean you don't need advice and they have really left her in the dark. I would be making a fuss if I were her.

  • She was having a mild attack when she first went to the drs hence the pred for the exacerbation. She went to the doctors today as she was feeling no better got told it was anxiety and to go home and rest despite her poor breathing. Think I'll advise her to see a different gp at the practice!

  • Sounds like GP practice have just left. Left with diagnosis of asthma but no leaflets or any real advice. By sheer chance, found this site and never looked back. Only here, did I learn about aero chambers, peak flow meters and what to ask my GP. Not that they listened much. Asking nurse for Action Plan was told it involved some calculation and she didn't have the time to do it. So yes, sadly this is the norm.

    PS Glad your friend has you as her friend. :) Look forward to seeing them on AUK.

    Edit: PPS Changing GPs can make all the difference. I

  • Oh, not the 'anxiety' routine again! Why do some doctors seem to go straight to that and not even listen if you tell them actually you're not anxious, or at least you weren't until you started not being able to breathe properly?

    Different GP is the way forward, amazed by the difference you can get in a single practice (and the disturbing uselessness of the odd one - though the worst I have met yet was an OOH GP). Hope your friend does get some more useful advice soon.

  • I wasn't given much information either when I was diagnosed a few months ago. Have since started seeing asthma nurse rather than GP as she has seemed far more helpful. I agree that GPs do seem to think that adults can just get on with it, even when they've had no experience whatsoever of asthma up until point of diagnosis!

  • I discovered that my GP, who is generally ok, has been leaving me and the cons to it a bit too much - understandable, she has no idea what's going on with me and prefers to leave it to the experts (who also have no idea what's going on with me), but a bit naughty as a) cons is hardly available for advice b) I discovered from AUK adviceline actually there is something she could be doing, so I'm going to harass her tomorrow. She must be sick of the sight of me by now but have learned GPs are supposed to be there to help you as much as they can - so your friend definitely needs to be as uppity as she can till they find a solution! (though can't say yet how well it works...)

    Hoping to maybe see your friend on here!

  • seems to be..

    a friend was given a rx for anitbiotics and ventolin when she had a chest infection. told not to fill the ventolin for a few days as the abx should do the trick. but she wasn't shown how to use her inhaler iether. that was left to a few of us as her friends. she fill both rx at the same time.

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