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Methought I heard a voice cry, “Sleep no more! Macbeth does murder sleep”—the innocent sleep,

Or in my case asthma/viral infections/stupid, aggravating and irritating respiratory systems had murdered my sleep tonight.

Its 4.14 am and for the 3rd time tonight I have been violently woken choking. First time in the night it was with vomiting (nice!), second was an hour after I got that one under control (which took a good half an hour) and this last was 40 minutes after the last one.

This is not asthma attack in the chest but it is in my throat where the irritaing choke reflex will choke for no apparent reason, or just because it can. I have piles of pillows and it makes no difference what I do.

I'm at the tail end of yet another viral infection (tracheitis and sinus infection). This is the 2nd one in 5 months and again has resulted in A&E visit (last Saturday). On steroids and antibiotics, plus usual inhalers (Symbicort 200/6 and Ventolin). None of those meds will stop this particular choking experience from happening.

No doctors take the blind bit of notice of it. Once said it was post nasal drip! I know different. It is not.

Its better analogy is a muscle cramp that one can feel twitching in the leg and then it goes into full spasm and there is nothing one can do about it. Except this is in the throat and stops one breathing.

Seriously fed up with this.

I have demanded an asthma review next week - 5 months since the first A&E Asthma exacerbation and I am not under any control. I can barely walk a few yards before getting out of breath, I get viral infections more often than changing socks and I get this choking problem. Surely someone in my surgery should start to see that 5 lots of steroids, 4 lots of antibotics and 2 A&E admittances plus the other diffculties I have shows that this needs investigating more thoroughly rather than handing out more tablets like sweeties??


7 Replies

Please go to the doctors and explain what's happening. Even if it's just to put your mind at ease. Let me know how you get on please take care 😊 xxx Bernadette

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I have been trying. Believe me. I have a lovely Nurse Practitioner I saw in January (emergency). I saw her three times and she is the ONLY person who listened. She even read my history, listened to me and saw me in the state I was at the time (she couldn't get my breathing under control and she got me to A&E the first time). On a review apt (3rd one with her) she commented that unless the asthma got under control with the change of inhaler, I would need to be referred.

Its not been under proper control since then and I've been desperately trying to get back to see her. I keep getting stupid excuses as to why I can't see *her* from reception. Examples when I called on a Friday to check her rota for the following week that they hadn't GOT the Rota set up. (seriously??? Do they think I'm stupid??).

I've seen two doctors - both emergency - who simply treated me for the issues at the time (steroids and antibiotics) but again not at all interested in dealing with the big huge red flag of why I can barely walk a few hundred yards without getting out of breath for the past 5 months.

I have tried *again* to get an apt with the NP. I have one with another nurse next week. I have just decided to talk to her and get her to get an apt with the nice NP. See what happens then.

Why can't asthma be taken seriously and be treated as proactively as possible rather than leaving it till emergency situation?

Sorry for the rant.


Tell them to check for gerd gastritis you need to see a GI doctor. I have been dealing with the same thing for two years everything you described. I was intubated in 2015. Dr. diagnosed me with everything no meds worked. They pretty much sent me home to die. I finally got a new Dr. who listened and she did what I asked. I have h pylori and that's the problem. Get checked asap for that it may solve all your problems.

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I definitely have acid reflux and indigestion but I know its been caused *by* the terrible and violent coughing attacks when in a full blown chest infection which is occuring because of the asthma causing the stupidly and overly sensitive lungs to become so inflamed and irritable.

I take Gaviscon Double Action tablets to limit that particularly problem. Not ideal but they work. And I can tolerate the taste.


I've had this "choke" reaction both at night & during the day, more than ten times now. Again like you, Drs have been unconcerned tho it's terrifying & I feel I will never breathe again as throat has completely closed up suddenly. It happened once when I was out & an ambulance was called so at least that time it was officially recorded. The A&E doc thought it was probably a BRONCHIAL SPASM. Certainly felt like it! How to stop them? I've no idea. I live in dread..

Take care & very best wishes!

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Its horrible and terrifying. I wish the doctors would take that aspect far more seriously than they do. I have Codiene phosphate which helps to suppress a dry irritable non productive cough but I can't take more than one tablet at a time (and then only at night) or I will be practically comatose!

I think what is worse is that it can occur with no warning whatsoever.


UPDATE 19/05/17:

Managed to see the Asthma Nurse yesterday (Thursday). They are now taking it seriously. Being moved from Symbicort to Fostair, AND having 2 weekly reviews to see how its working.

And I started yet another sore throat yesterday so last night was bad - woken a number of times choking. At least today I'm off work (Love flexitime!). My TL has been great and has suggested my thinking of possibly reducing my hours temporarily till we get it back under control but I want to really avoid that. I'm feeling like I'm not pulling my own weight in the office at the moment (though TL is saying that's not the case at all).

Really hoping the Fostair and regular reviews will get me on the road to recovery. 5 months of this is just too much and I'm so tired.

Not sure what I would have done without this forum or Asthma UK. Just knowing there are others in the same situation stops a person feeling so isolated or feeling like its all in my head. Thanks all for being virtual shoulders to cry on.

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