Wonderful asthma uk nurse, and first cons visit - what to expect?

Hi everyone

I have been asthmatic for 12 years, after a having pleuracy, and luckily to date have had very few problems at all.

However, that all changed 6 weeks ago, I started with a tickly cough at night, and then began to cough up muck. To cut a long story short, I now wake at night every 2-3 hours, unable to breathe and choking. When i can finally get any ssalamol in and have coughed up lots of phlegm (sorry to be so graphic!) the choking subsides. I have been to the GP 6 times, been prescribed 2 courses of pred, 2 courses of anti-biotics, change from budesonide to symbicort, diazepam, along with 2 nitghts in hospital under an ENT specialist, who said my vocal chords were fine., go home!! My GP yesterday told me that it was anxiety causing the problems and stopping me from getting well! I left with a feeling of being a fraud - I typically don't wheeze unless I am in full flow of an attack - so the GP assumes its psychological.....

However, i had a particularly bad night last night so Finally at my wits end this morning I called the wonderful asthma nurse on the number on this website, she was fantastic - finally someone who understood my symptoms. She told me that I am definitely not a fraud and encouraged me to go back to my GP and ask for referral to a consultant, I am soo glad I did. I saw another GP in the practice and came away with more pred, motelukast, seretide and an appointment with a consultant. Result!! I am hoping for a better night tonight....

My question really is what can I expect for the consultant? Are there specific tests and any questions you would recommend asking?

Thanks for reading this, it really helps to type it out and I cannot praise enough the wonderful work the nurses on here do.

Xx

4 Replies

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  • Hi,

    Result! Glad you went to another GP, was going to answer and suggest that as it can make a big difference. And the AUK nurses are great, I spoke to one in particular who really seemed to understand that not everyone is the same and my oddities didn't mean it was all in my head or nothing going on.

    I've bumped up another thread for you about first appts - hope that helps. I've had a few first appts at the resp clinic due to moving around and they generally seem to like doing at least basic spirometry, maybe with the nurse who might also do height/weight/pulse and sats measurement. Or they may organise more extensive lung function tests but that's sometimes on another day. I pretty much always have a chest X-ray the first time too, and blood tests; one time I had an ECG as well. They'll probably do most on the day and possibly arrange others if needed, and if efficient and not very overloaded will probably ask you to come back in a few weeks to a month to discuss initial results.

    Re questions: firstly I would say jot anything down on a piece of paper - don't get into too much detail, just a reminder! I get very nervous in these appts and then babble like an idiot so it helps to have this reminder to keep me on track.

    I'd say see how it goes, but maybe make a list of anything you're not sure about or your GP hasn't answered. I'm sure there are some standard ones to ask but my mind has gone blank for some reason - will let you know if I remember!

    Hope this helps; good luck and hope the meds GP gave you start working and you don't have long to wait for a chest clinic appt.

  • Thanks Philomela

    A really useful insight, and I will definitely jot some questions down, probably when I next wake In the small hours! It's strange that although I have been asthmatic for 12 years I have had very few problems, so much so that I sometimes doubted whether I actually had it, but I guess that my asthma nurse had it so well managed that it was almost perfectly controlled.

    I'll also take a look at the other thread, thanks again, hope you are staying well at the moment.

    Xx

  • Hi

    The asthma nurses on the website were very helpful

    and encouraging when my GP was not listening

    Hope things improve for you soon

  • I am so glad you have had a good experience to blot out the bad one!

    Just to add to what Philomela has suggested, I would write down your asthma history, your known triggers, your typical symptoms and what has worked in the past.

    Please let us know how you get on too and good luck!

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