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Asthma and bronchiectasis

After being diagnosed with mild asthma 21 years ago aged 53 I just used my preventer daily and almost never needed my reliever. Just under a year ago I started to get breathless and developed a cough. i saw the asthma nurse regularly and was prescribed stronger and stronger inhalers (currently Fostair 200/6). I have also had several courses of Prednisolone which made me feel great whilst I was taking them , but soon after I stopped the symptoms returned. I was referred to the chest clinic at my local hospital and had a chest x-ray and a CT Scan. The clinic sent the results to my GP who explained that I have bronchiectasis a well as asthma, but I have not yet been invited back to the clinic to be given all the information I need. As the first consultation was over 3 months ago I am getting very frustrated as my symptoms are still the same and are only relieved by short courses of prednisolone. which my GP doesn't want me to have. I had to almost beg him yesterday even though he could see I was struggling to walk a few hundred yards without becoming really breathless. Sorry this post is so long but I was hoping someone in a similar position could advise me.

12 Replies
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Very difficult for you. There are many patients with Bronchiectasis on the British Lung Foundation forum on Health Unlocked. Perhaps join up to that as well?

K

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Thanks Katinka46, I'll try that

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Sorry you are having such a hard time. Hope you get specialist relief because your GP doesn't seem very helpful right now.

Take care xx

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Thanks for your reply, at least my GP is contacting the clinic for me.

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Have you got the letter from the chest clinic? Can I recommend that you ring the hospital and ask to speak to the Chest Clinic Secretaries to find out when they will be seeing you again? There must be a broken link somewhere as the Chest Clinic will want to look at your medication etc so they can control your symptoms better.

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Thanks for your reply, my GP said he would contact the clinic on my behalf, so maybe I'll hear something soon.

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Have you considered sharing your case history with a private consultant in order to get a faster treatment plan that you could then present to your GP? I know that many can't afford the the (typical) £300 to £400 Private Consultancy Fee, but if your pockets are deep enough, it might accelerate matters if you're otherwise being told to expect a long wait for an NHS Consultation. (If you do decide to go private, get a price quote first as the sums I mentioned are appropriate and could vary).

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My consultant says that respiratory physiotherapy is very important for bronchiectasis. Could you ask your GP or the hospital to refer you for that?

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I did ask the GP about it but he seems to be relying on my visit to the consultant to sort it, whenever that may be. The thing is , I know I'm 74 years old, but until last year I was very active, walking long distances and doing voluntary work and now I find it difficult to do very much, plus I'm gaining weight, which is partly due to the steroids and partly to lack of exercise.

Thanks for your input.

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Well I'm 70 so age shouldn't be a barrier to walking. Must be very frustrating when you were so active before. Let's hope that the GP can chase up the appointment and get you seen soon. It's possible that you may be put on a maintenance dose of Prednisolone but if your breathing is better you will be able to do more exercise so it's a trade off. Good luck.

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Thanks, it's good to hear from someone nearly as old as me!

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Haha!

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