Wheezing Only

Ever since a chest infection 7 years ago, i have developed a winter wheeze. This year the wheezing seemed to last most of the year. I have had spirometry in the past, and most recently and it shows that i maybe borderline Asthmatic but nothing obvious. I never get a tight chest it is just the wheezing. Has anyone else experienced this? The GP said i didn't need a chest xray as i didn't have a cough. I just get a bit preoccupied that they are missing something else, but mainly the wheezing is getting very annoying as it flares up most and night and keeps either me or my partner awake.

9 Replies

  • Hi ,CathyFox sorry I cannot help you but of you call the helpline during office hours they will be able to advise you, good luck ♥

  • hi have you had tests for other allergies? i too wheeze alot more in winter following a cold though my oxygen levels also drop causing me to turn a little blue this has been treated as asthma most of my life however not sure if it actually is as my lung fuction is better than predicted and a recent echo scan has revilled a problem with the blood flow between heart and lungs.

  • Cold weather causes inflammation of the airways, although I'm not sure if it's fully understood why. And when your airways become inflamed that in turn is a cause of wheezing, so my unqualified guess would be that you probably have mild asthma (I don't personally think there's such a thing as 'borderline'; you either have it or you don't), but there are degrees of severity & it sounds like you are fairly mild.

    However if it is keeping you awake at night, that's a standard trigger (as anyone who has ever had an asthma review can confirm) for them to start to pay attention. It might be as simple as needing a puff of ventolin at bedtime on cold nights.

    The other thing for me would be that if you have mild symptoms there is always the potential for it to deteriorate if left untreated so I don't think they should just brush you aside even if the spirometry is not entirely conclusive. Out of interest did they give you ventolin during the spirometry to test for differential levels? And were you experiencing symptoms when they tested you?

    All of that is cautionary more than advisory so don't worry too much, but I'd be tempted to keep pressing the GP to try you on a bronchodilator for a trial period to see if it relieves your symptoms.

    Good luck.

  • This might sound like an odd question but is your wheeze in your lungs or your throat? I had similar problem after a bad chest infection and was treated for asthma and bronchiectasis but as treatment wasnt working I was prescribed more and more inhalers and ended up on the highest dose of symbicort plus spriva. Spent several years getting increasingly frustrated because I wasn't convinced my diagnosis was right. Eventually persuaded my gp to refer me back to a resp consultant whose opinion was that I have mild asthma which was ovemedicated and my main problem is layngeal rather than lung and the inhalers were making things worse not better. Have reduced my inhalers and have an ENT appointment in Feb. So my advice for what it is worth is to be really clear about what your symptoms are and be firm with your gp. Somthing is making you wheeze and if you dont have a cough and your spirometry is OK then they need to think about what, other than asthma, is the cause. Hope you can get some sensible answers and help.

  • Really interested in how your appt goes with the ENT people. It is definitely more in my throat than chest. I have the brown inhaler which does works little as a preventative but my blue inhaler prevents the wheezing for 20mins or so and seems to come back fairly soon after. I don't get SOB or A tight chest. It's mainly just noisy and annoying! Am beginning to think it might be food allergies ... Am heading back to the drs shortly but getting appointments is difficult at my surgery.

  • Hi Cathy ENT appt was very interesting. I have a some inflammation of larynx and a vocal cord problem which is the main reason why I cough and have voice problems. If you look for information on vocal cord dysfunction you will find that all the symptoms of asthma without the lung bit are often down to vocal cord problems. This is a really good article


    ENT bloke couldn't say why my larynx reacts the way it does. He did give me Omeprazole and Gaviscon to take for a month in case silent refluxe was the cause of larygngeal inflammation but he did not think that was likely. Had to stop taking it after a couple of weeks as I had side effects. I have been referred for some vocal cord therapy to train them to work better which wont make the problem go away but will help with managing it. Reducing my inhalers has made a big difference, I dont react as much to triggers and reactions are less severe. Also knowing that it is my vocal cords not my lungs has given me the confidence to do more exercise which has helped too.

    Seeing resp consultant again in April and hoping he will change my inhaler to a non steroid one as my asthma is mild.

    When you go back to your GP I think you should definitely ask whether it might be laryx rather than lungs. Good luck and let me know how you get on.

  • Hi. Taken a while to get back to these posts. I didn't get a chance to go back to the doctors, I started to use my brown inhaler for a period of two weeks and it seemed to die down. I then had a few months of very little wheezing, just started to re trigger now, last night I sounded like I was breathing through cotton wool if that makes any sense! I had noticed that I had quite a lot of diet ginger beer and I just wonder if that is triggering a reaction. Also been reading the posts about itchy chin and chest, I certainly get this but again it isn't followed by any type of ashtma attack...don't get me wrong I am certainly grateful for that! I have my ashtma check with the practice nurse in a couple of weeks so am going to ask if I can be sent to allegy clinic.

  • I decided to go see a GP privately, for a second opinion on asthma diagnosis and the wheezing in particular. She was excellent, sent me straight up for chest X-ray and was very surprised I hadn't already had one given my spirometry was inconclusive. Am a bit nervous about the results as she said they will have a look to check for any lung lesions. Go back for results next Tuesday.

  • X-ray clear. Reccomemded stronger dose of steroid inhaler. Regrettably now have oral trush!! Have stopped inhaler whilst this clears up and at the moment not flare up of wheezing and waiting thrush to clear. Have daktarin to take and avoiding anything sugary!

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