What could this mean? Worried

Basically I've had asthma all my life. It used to be very bad when I was a child but I hadn't had any attacks for over a decade. Over the last year my asthma has deteriorated again. I was put on Fostair which helped a lot until recently. About 3/4 weeks ago I had an attack and was given Prednisolone  which relieved it. I was also given Montelukast by my GP as he could see my asthma wasn't under control. Well a week ago I had another attack. It was simultaneous with an allergic reaction I had to a product which made me break out in eczema. I've been to the A&E about 6 times in the last week as I keep struggling to breathe. The first time I went a week ago they gave me steroids again but this time it's not getting rid of the breathless. Every time I go to the A&E all my stats are fine. I've had blood tests and x rays which have all come back fine. Of course they keep not taking me seriously/telling me I have anxiety (which I know isn't the problem) and one doctor even made me see a psychiatrist (the doctors have actually treated me horribly but thats another story). The psychiatrist confirmed that it was a physical problem and not a mental one. I have a respiratory appointment in a couple of weeks but in the mean time I'm worried. I can't even walk out of my house because of breathlessness. Inhalers don't seem to do much. Some doctors even say it can't be asthma if my inhalers/steroids aren't helping. I saw one private GP and she was the only one who found that my chest wasn't clear when breathing out. She gave me antibiotics to eliminate the possibility and some different antihistamines. But the possibility of a chest infection is unlikely as it didn't come up in my tests.

Has anyone had any experience similar to this? It's been over a week and I don't understand why I still feel like this. Thanks

8 Replies

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  • Anyone?

  • I'm breathless all throughout the day and night with no improvement from steroids/inhalers over the last week

  • Everyones asthma is very different. I've only had it for 4 years myself (only been severe for 2) and have been very up and down with it until recently in summer. I had quite a few attacks over course of summer and at end of summer I had a 3 week period where I couldn't make it to the shops and if I did I was very SOB and exhausted and upset about how debilitating my asthma was being. After a course of pred and days and days of being in bed I finallly started to feel OK again. I have no idea what caused this, didn't have cold or chest infection or anything of the sort, hadn't changed meds - was the weirdest thing. Asthma is a very unpredictable disease and I really feel for you as I've been there.

    All I can recommend is try taking your meds at same time every day, don't push yourself, get plenty of rest and then gradually work your way back into things - don't do it all at once and this can have the reverse effect. I've learnt now when not to push myself. Hope this helps and hope you feel better soon

  • Thank you for your response UniGirl. May I asked how long after you started taking pred that you started to feel yourself improve? I can relate to your story so much as I can't do anything without getting the SOB and can't understand why this has been happening. What makes it more frustrating is that most doctors don't recognise it as asthma because my chest seems clear to them etc which just makes me feel more helpless. But you're right, it does seem to be asthma which is unpredictable as you said. I will take your advice and hopefully will rest it out. Thanks a lot and take care

  • AmaniC, I had a long and hard battle with lots of doctors to get an official asthma label on my condition. This being because I am not typical in any way - PF doesn't always react (does with colds though always dips), don't wheeze (that I know of), don't cough lots - I just the whole tight chest thing. I have had many tests and some I did not react too which means I'm in a small percent of asthmatics which didn't react to typical test. Interestingly enough I reacted to exercise test meaning my FEV1s dropped significantly 15 mins after exercise. Most attacks I've had I've been able to control on my own, a lot of times I have had family or friends with me to help get my meds for me and its a comfort having them there. You just need to plod on annoying as it is. I always found it frustrating that I can look perfectly well, especially being a girl means I can cover up with make up, and on the inside I can feel absolutely terrible. Obviously I do not want to look ill all the time but then again it would help in terms of docs.

    In regards to pred I did not notice until a few days after I'd finished the course - my body has always been weird like that and needs extra time to recover but I think the pred really did help me. I was only on a 5 day course. Glad you are taking my advice, hopefully christmas means you can rest and hopefully your family will understand you aren't up to the same things you always are. last christmas I was not well at all, had to leave dinner table to take inhaler, went bed about 7pm as I couldn't last any longer. I think my mum was upset about this but understanding too.

  • Thanks again for your reply. I can relate so much, especially about looking well on the outside. I've felt bad about being ill over the Christmas period but there's nothing that can be done really. Yesterday wasn't actually as bas as I thought it'd be. I hope you had a good Christmas!

  • AmaniC that is great to hear. Well on this board I think most of us have been there with the being ill over xmas, I think there is a lot of pressure to enjoy the day to the max aswell so you want to be well but sometimes you can't help it. I think I have been ill on a few xmases pre asthma with stuff like sickness bug etc but still manage to have a great day every time!!

  • Hi

    Ususally when i am bad with asthma i get all good results good sats skyhigh heartrate pf not too bad and i walk into a& e and they think i am having a panic attack not asthma, i did actually have a registrar tell me that it was all in the head and my GP went bonkers. The last few weeks my pf has been low and been back to the doctors twice and finally given some pred which has sort of helped.

    If anyone tells you its all in the mind its them who need to go and see the looney ayslem not you.!!!!!!!!! Somtimes i can just get sob even though i am a cough asthmatic, i did in June and ended up in back of ambulance. Although on that occasion i think it was some paint fumes set me off!! which was strange as it don;t usually affect me.

    Are you under a consultant if not asked to be referred its within your rights as everytime you are admitted they are not sorting the issue and perhaps a chest consultant might see things diffenerently.

    glad u had a good xmas

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