Can peak flow be increased: My peak... - Asthma UK communi...

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Can peak flow be increased

Faith007 profile image

My peak flow has been around 320 for the last 20 years. My asthma however still remains uncontrolled. My doctor has suggested that I try another inhaler as well as 2 puffs twice a day of the Flutiform 250/10. He seems to think that there is a chance that this additional inhaler may improve my peak flow!

In anyone's experience is this possible as I am sceptical?

Thank you.

13 Replies

Does he mean Spiriva? I'm on that as well as Flutiform 250/10. If so, yes, it did increase my peak flow, plus stops it dropping as low when I'm triggered off.

Hope the added inhaler works for you,xx

Faith007 profile image
Faith007 in reply to S4r4L0u153

Thank you so much for your reply S4r4L0u153 the Spiriva is exactly what he has given me. I am about to give it a try today fingers crossed it helpsx

S4r4L0u153 profile image
S4r4L0u153 in reply to Faith007

All the best with that. Hopefully you will quickly see the benefit. It has really helped me. Have a good Sunday.xx

I was on fostair ( higher dose) and in the last couple of months have been given spiriva, my peak flow has improved drastically, it's gone from around 230/300 up to 450 most of the time ... so yes it can be increased. I am a long term asthmatic with brittle uncontrolled asthma, I also have xolair injections and was using up to four ventolin inhalers a month, I'm now down to one being prescribed. .. I'd say try whatever your offered because it may just be the turning point. Good luck

Faith007 profile image
Faith007 in reply to shassh

Thank you so much for your reply shassh. I am hoping that this inhaler helps me to. Your asthma sounded pretty bad if you were getting through that many inhalers. I am pleased to hear that the spiriva has helped youx

shassh profile image
shassh in reply to Faith007

I hope you get good results.. mine were almost instant within a day or two my breathing was so much better. Let me know how you get on. Good luck!

Faith007 profile image
Faith007 in reply to shassh

Thank you. I will let you know.

S4r4L0u153 profile image
S4r4L0u153 in reply to shassh

My improvement was also within a day or two.xx

Faith007 profile image
Faith007 in reply to S4r4L0u153

That is promising thank you so muchx

How to test if your Peak Flow can be improved.

Two typical Tests for improving PF that GPs and Consultants use.

1. When your Medical Practice gives you a Spirometry Test and - as part of that test - gets you to take two to four puffs of Reliever Inhaler (then retetests you) that part of the test is to see what level of improved PF you might be capable of

2. Sometimes GPs or Consultants put patients on 14 Days of Oral Steroids then - on day 15 - test their PF and Spirometry (again to assess what level of PF might be achievable).

Even if the Tests only indicate a 10% Improvement as being possible at present, once that target has been achieved (by experiment with different Meds) then - repeating the Tests - will often suggest that a further improvement has become possible.

OK, in some cases, Airway Wall Thickening may be too far advanced to be very responsive to Meds, but new forms of treatment are continually in development and improved solutions may be just round the corner.

Also, breathing exercises, light physical exercise, allergen identification and avoidance plus lifestyle improvements (e.g. more sleep, naps, meditation, ideal weight maintenance, improved diet) etc can all provide small incremental improvements - sometimes even 'big' improvements.

Stay motivated, get referred to a good consultant and keep taking steps and testing new ideas. Researching your condition, staying up-to-date on new developments and pushing medical advisers continually for more help is also critical.

Thank you so much Matman for your detailed response. I feel that I have been fobbed off for the last 30 years by GPs! The GP I have now found does seem to have a genuine interest in my condition and seems to be taking it seriously. I really hope that I can get it under control eventually.

It is quite frustrating as I do keep myself fit and active by attending a gym and practicing yoga. I eat healthy and am an ideal weight. I also get plenty of sleep fortunately. The icing on the cake now will be to get my breathing regulated. Thank you once again for your advicex

I have a similar peak flow to yours and, like Matman, mine was tested for reversibility and consequently diagnosed with late onset asthma as the peak flow could be improved with a reliever. However, my admittedly short time on this forum has led me to believe that there is too much concentration on peak flows and not enough on making people well. There seems to be a huge variation in peak flows (not just the result of age or gender) where people are comfortable and, most importantly, their asthma is under control. I would be less concerned with peak flow and more concerned with getting your asthma under control. All the better if both go together, but the asthma seems to me to be the most serious issue. Just a thought from a non-expert - others may disagree!

Improving peak flow. I dont know if this will help you but it does for me. Amazon ebay etc have device for about a tenner. It's about 6 inches long with a snorkle-like moutpiece at one end and a dead end at the other. There is a slit near the middle with a screw valve to lengthen or shorten the slit. You blow into it hard to strengthen the lungs. Difficulty is increased/decreased by turning the valve screw. I keep it on a ledge by the doorway to the kitchen and bathroom and blow into it, hard, on the way through the door. It has improved both my peak flow and spirometer readings. Takes a few months, though. Best with some regular ecercuse, however, eg a brisk 20 min walk 4 plus times a week. Good luck.

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