Asthma UK community forum

Allergic asthma

Hello

I hope everyone is well and coping with the winter weather?

I posted in this forum back in July as I had a very bad asthma flare up that was causing a lot of confusion. Since the warm summer months came in, I started waking up every night with bad asthma episodes that could last from 30mins to 3 hours kept awake. I was put on prednisolone on 3 separate weeks and changed my reliever to fostair max dose morning and night. Plus montekulast tablets. I had several emergency doctors appointments and a very frustrating and confusing time on waiting lists and appointments with different doctors trying to work out what was going on. I have a high peak flow, very healthy and never suffered from exercise.

After months of stress, I managed to get a lung function test and blood tests back in October to confirm I had bad allergies. Mainly to pets and also grass pollen. I’ve since removed our house cat from the bedroom completely and taken some fexofenadine anti-histamine tablets. Things have now started to improve. Not instantly, but I noticed a reduction in the amount of time I was being kept awake for at night and then stared having a few nights with no wake ups at all. It’s now been almost a week with out any wake ups and I am very happy and relieved!

So, I no longer sleep with cat on the bed or find her as bothering for my asthma in the day time either. I have an air purifier and a Dyson per hoover which helps. Also sleep with window on latch for lovely fresh cold air.

In 2016 I also had a smaller but similar fierce asthma flare up in the summer, then winter came and I was fine. Last winter I managed to go back to minimal preventer and stop montekulast! So it’s very clear that summer grass pollen and my cat is a trigger for me. We cannot re-home the cat which is my girlfriends beloved pet long before I met and moved in with her. However we are saving for a house and may be able to avoid grass near the windows.

So, my reason to post on here is firstly to share an update and pass on my experience to those who may be in a similar situation to me and very confused where the asthma is coming from after around 20 years with no problems.

Secondly, when speaking to people on this forum and a very helpful asthma UK nurse, it was brought to my attention that my nose could be a problem for my asthma. I have something called a post nasal drip which I think means phlegm drips into my throat in the night? I was given a steroid nasal spray but no idea if it actually helped or loosened the phlegm more to make things worse in the night. Just a coupe of weeks ago, I noticed when waking up, I needed to clear excess phlegm from my lungs and my nightly asthma was less of a severe tightness of chest but light asthma which I could relive in about 4 puffs of ventolin instead of the previous 8 - 10 in the summer. Plus a bit of coughing up phlegm to clear my lungs.

So I’ve stopped taking the nasal spray and ran out of fexofenadine for a few days. Started back on Loratadine and I’ve been sleeping fine! However, every morning I blow my nose and find lots of blood! I regularly get sinus pain and need to clear my nose. Always have done. I had bad sinusitis 5 or 6 years ago too. Yet when I went to the doctor, they refused to look at my nose. They told me it was not possible for my asthma to flare up severely at night and then go back to strong peak flow some days. They wouldn’t let me get referred to the hospital but did do the lung test plus 2 blood tests. I got the impression I was becoming a nuisance to them as I kept asking for emergency appointments. I managed to book a phone call with a different doctor who doesn’t know me to tell me the test results. Her advice was, get rid of the cat.

So anyway, I feel like I’ve made progress. I’ve got some answers,I’ve compromised and removed cat from bedroom and I’m sleeping again. but I’m dreading next summer! What happens when the grass pollen is back and the cat is shedding furr?

Also, what the hell is going on with my nose? Why do I get daily nose bleeds? Will the Doctors see me about nose bleeds or should I just be grateful that things are good now and wait till things are bad again before making appointments.

I’m happy I have some answers but not totally satisfied I know what’s going on yet. Does anyone else have similar problems / situations? Or can share any knowledge about their nose?!

Sorry for the long post. I appreciate the support and I also hope my ramblings and experiences. May help some of you too.

Thanks

5 Replies
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If you’re having daily nose bleeds that are bad, then you need to see your Doc. If it’s just some blood from blowing your nose first thing then I’m sure that’s fine. My dad had nasal bleeding every time he blew his nose and the ENT doc reassured us it was nothing more than the weakened vessels in his nose rupturing from the pressure of him blowing, men do tend to blow there nose like an old ships funnel x

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Thanks so much. Yes it’s mainly blood when blowing and I do indeed blow very hard. Especially when cycling in cold weather!

Reassuring to hear it’s normal so thank you.

I will also try to find an ENT doc!

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Oh you sound just like me although I was advised to keep taking the Montelukast every day of the year. I use the Avamys nasal spray as I found it more gentle in my nose than any other type of spray. I experienced mild nose bleeds when I started using this but they went away after a month. The trouble is allergic asthma is a respiratory and ent problem and it seems the two areas rarely talk. Eventually I had loads of polyps removed from my nose which helped immensely.

I was also advised to get rid of carpets and curtains where possible - if you’re moving bear that in mind as they harbour all sorts.

I would push to see an ent specialist if you’re not happy. I ended up paying to see someone privately which was far cheaper than I thought and really helped sort things out. Good luck

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Thanks so much for reading my really long post and for your advice!

The world nasal polyps rings a bell. I will have to do some research into this and find out exactly what they are and if i have them. To hear that you had loads removed and it made a difference to your asthma is great to hear. Perhaps there’s some hope for me too in the summer months.

I will also try to find out about an ent specialist and if they could look at my nose.

As I said, my doctors were helpful but also as confused by the cause of my asthma flare up as I was. To hear an asthma uk nurse talk about my nose as a potential problem and then have my GP tell me that as I’m taking a nasal spray, that means my nose can’t be the problem, which eliminates that as a route to explore.

Now as my doctors were adamant I couldn’t get referred to a specialist at the hospital, I have to just do as I’m told and to keep taking my medication and avoid the cat. And also avoid grass pollen, which may be impossible!

But it bothers me that there could be another cause that’s been overlooked. I suppose if I did have nasa polyps, they might cause an allergic reaction to my lungs somehow. No idea, but I’ll do some research!

I don’t really care about blowing a bit of blood out of my nose, but I’d really like to get to the bottom of my severe summer flare ups. Of course I will suggest removing carpets and curtains too.

Thanks so much for your reply! Really appreciate it

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Hello James, I react to cats and dogs. When our son asked us to look after his dog I hesitated. However as I have had information from Healthy House re air filters I found out that they do a spray which can be put onto the animals coat and it neutralises the allergen. I was sceptical but we sent away for the spray and tried it and it worked. We had the dog for three weeks and I was fine. Ditto for the cat when visiting my other son. They had used the 'Petal Cleanse' spray three days before I visited and I was fine. Don't ask me how it works I can only say it did!

If you look up Healthy House and pet allergies they have all the information. You can phone them to and they are helpful.

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