Hi all, I'm a new member but have been reading the boards for a while. I've had asthma for about 5 years, and mostly it's been well controlled till I had a bad exacerbation at the beginning of this year that resulted in an admittance.
Since then my asthma has never got back to being how it was , and I'm really confused about it since I saw a consultant last month and she seemed really disinterested and has left me feeling like I'd be wasting her time and mine if I continue to see her.
My exacerbation came after several months of going back and forth to my asthma nurse because after being a victim of an assault last year I was feeling pretty stressed out. I don't know if that was the eventual trigger for the exacerbation, since none of the doctors actually told me anything, choosing instead to talk to each other over my bed and not to me. I was treated for a chest infection that 3 doctors and a chest x-ray said I didn't have, but they gave me antibiotics 'just in case', and I'd also had 2 colds in the weeks preceding it which also could have caused it, but since no one's told me anything I'm confused and unsure of the real cause, and the notes from the hospital just say 'shortness of breath' as the reason for admittance, which seems pretty general to me.
My asthma nurse had been trying to get me referred to the consultant for a while before I was admitted, because whenever I did have any problems I didn't seem to follow the 'normal rules' for symptoms etc, but my GP always wanted to hold out. Since I was admitted I automatically got an appointment with the consultant, which my asthma nurse was pretty pleased about, and she told me to do peak flows and write down everytime I had symptoms, and what I was doing at the time. She also said they'd be doing a spirometry test and generally getting to the bottom of my triggers etc.
The exacerbation was in January, and the cons appt in June, and since January I was really struggling some mornings with shortness of breath at work, to the point sometimes where I just had to sit down for a breather before carrying on (I'm a care assistant in a nursing home, pretty physical especially in the mornings), and taking the reliever didn't seem to make much difference, probably because I was still working. The s.o.b would only really go once all the running around was done with and I could take things slower. It wasn't every shift where it happened, just a couple of mornings a week, so I kinda figured it wasn't just me being unfit since I'd expect it to be every shift if that was the case.
I saw the consultant last month, and although I know better than to expect some miracle cure, I was at least hoping for a little interest in my symptoms and maybe a change of medication to see if the s.o.b could be eased. She hardly looked at my peak flow charts, when she did she pulled a figure out of thin air for my 'best' (480, which I haven't blown since early last year when I was actually 'well'), and when I asked about the shortness of breath she said there was nothing she could do about that unless I quit my job. No spirometry was done, so I have no idea if the exacerbation has left my lungs worse than they were before, or if the s.o.b is even connected.
I'm supposed to be going back in 6 months to see her again, but I really don't want to. I don't see the point if I'm just gonna be wasting 3 hours on buses and sat in waiting rooms for the sake of a 2 minute one-sided conversation.
I have spoken to my asthma nurse since seeing the cons, and she was pretty annoyed too. She's now put me on singulair, which, although it's only been 2 weeks I think is helping, at least I'm feeling the best I've felt all year, and I'm seeing my GP at the end of this month and she wants me to tell him everything that happened with the cons.
This is where I'm after your opinions; if I tell the GP is it likely to make any difference? I know a lot of you see consultants a lot, I don't really know what to expect from them, so I don't know if I'm just being petty and pathetic in expecting more from them. I'd really appreciate any input here!
Sorry it's such a long one, I kinda figured the whole story kinda connects the dots