How to get medical help?

Hi, I'm an asthmatic. I'm experiencing a lot of horrible things I've never had before and I hope we can help each other by sharing advice :)

After my asthma being managed for a long time, it's made a surprise comeback :(

I have a chronic cough with chest tightness. I sometimes cough up phlegm and even vomit. I don't wheeze but sometimes I hear a purring sound in my airway and a high-pitched gasping sound when my chest tightens and I can't breath. My inhaler does miracles during these times, but it also conceals my asthma from the paramedics. I've seen numerous doctors, all of which say different things. I've taken loads of medicines, but my symptoms are still up and down.

What's the best way to make sure this is asthma? Is there any other point of care aside from my GP/A&E who can help me?

Thanks!

5 Replies

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  • HI and welcome!

    That sounds a bit rubbish - I know the feeling of having loads of different opinions! When you say you've seen lots of doctors, does that include consultants - have you been referred to a chest clinic? Seems like if you haven't and the GP is stuck that should be next on the list.

    I think everyone is going to get bored of me saying it, but I'd also recommend ringing the asthma nurses on here (number top left) - they are lovely and very knowledgeable, and will listen while you tell them the whole story then give you some helpful advice to take back to your GP.

    Good luck! And this board is a good place to be -obviously not a substitute for medical advice, but you can still learn a lot.

  • HI and welcome!

    That sounds a bit rubbish - I know the feeling of having loads of different opinions! When you say you've seen lots of doctors, does that include consultants - have you been referred to a chest clinic? Seems like if you haven't and the GP is stuck that should be next on the list.

    I think everyone is going to get bored of me saying it, but I'd also recommend ringing the asthma nurses on here (number top left) - they are lovely and very knowledgeable, and will listen while you tell them the whole story then give you some helpful advice to take back to your GP.

    Good luck! And this board is a good place to be -obviously not a substitute for medical advice, but you can still learn a lot.

    Hi, thanks :)

    I've only seen GPs & A&E doctors. Normal temperature/chest x-ray but still given antibiotics. Anti-nausea & proton pump inhibitors to stop me vomiting, still feel sick when the cough gets severe. Also given a cough suppressant which I suspect worsened my asthma till my airway completely closed :(

    I'd love to hear from fellow asthmatics. Judging by the way I've been treated by a few of the ""professionals"", I feel like the only asthmatic in the world. One of them laughed when I said I feel my chest go inwards as he told me that's impossible. Not fun being made to feel like you're crazy :(

    I'd love to see a consultant. Do I have to ask my GP to refer me?

  • I think all this will sound very familiar to several people on here - including me! Not been to A&E but have had the 'well that can't happen and you're fine but it's in your head' etc. so much sympathy there. Not really impressed with the cough suppressant thing - at least they just told me to try and suppress it myself and it did actually help a little though was hard!

    You would need your GP to refer you yes. How is your GP - is s/he helpful and willing to listen and consider all the possibilities? If not, I would try another one in the practice if you haven't already; even if you do end up seeing a consultant, it's important to have a supportive GP if you can. If they don't want to refer, you can insist - if they are stumped and can't do anything useful for you then they really should be considering referral.

  • I think all this will sound very familiar to several people on here - including me! Not been to A&E but have had the 'well that can't happen and you're fine but it's in your head' etc. so much sympathy there. Not really impressed with the cough suppressant thing - at least they just told me to try and suppress it myself and it did actually help a little though was hard!

    You would need your GP to refer you yes. How is your GP - is s/he helpful and willing to listen and consider all the possibilities? If not, I would try another one in the practice if you haven't already; even if you do end up seeing a consultant, it's important to have a supportive GP if you can. If they don't want to refer, you can insist - if they are stumped and can't do anything useful for you then they really should be considering referral.

    Sad to hear others received similar treatment. It really hurts being treated like you're crazy or lying. I have an attack every night, but when I drag myself to hospital, it doesn't seem to matter. I try to resist coughing as it's becoming more and more painful. Not fun seeing blood in your phlegm or puking.

    My GP is nice but won't referrals take weeks? Thanks :)

  • Blood in your phlegm?! And they didn't pay attention to that?! OK, someone slipped up. Think you need to get in to see someone asap - can you see GP today and explain the problem? Referral will take a few weeks but sounds like you need treatment sooner than that; maybe your GP can send you up to the hospital and tell them what's been going on? Or obviously, if you're feeling bad now and you can't get to see your GP today, take yourself back to A&E and tell them about the blood if you haven't already.

    This is just my take on it - don't know the best approach but do think you should be seen as soon as you can. If you're still not getting anywhere or not sure what to do I would ring the AUK nurses asap as they will be able to advise you about what to do, but they're not an urgent service so I'd start with GP or hospital.

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