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Increasing seretide

Hannah125 profile image

Hi everyone,

I'm sorry about having to post another question here but I'm really struggling at the moment. I woke up this morning feeling the same as usual (tight chest but I'm used to it now) but throughout the morning my symptoms increased a lot and now it feels like I'm having an attack though I'm not wheezing (I can hear a high pitched wheeze on forced exhale, sore and tight chest, it feels like there's a giant rock sitting on my chest). I have sometimes a burning sensation that can go up in my nose. I also feel like my trachea is inflamed. Does a trachea inflammation also happen in an asthma attack or flare up ? I would really like to avoid taking oral steroids again (especially since they don't work for me) so I'm wondering if I could increase the dose of seretide ? I am now taking seretide 250 (2 puffs in the morning and 2 puffs in the evening). I know that you can use Fostair as a reliever but I'm not sure about seretide. I tried asking my doctor for a seperate steroid inhaler but he refused and said that seretide was stronger and better for my case!

The last doctor I saw told me that asthma didn't cause chest pain but I often feel like my lungs ache when I have trouble breathing. So, can chest pain be a symptom of asthma or does it indicate that there is something else going on ?

Is it possible in asthma to have more trouble breathing in than out ? According to a doctor I saw a few months ago it can't be asthma is the difficulty breathing occuts on the inhale rather than the exhale.

Thank you!

12 Replies

Maybe its GERD? Acid reflux can increase symptoms!

Asthma flares should cause more problems breathing out than in as it is an obstructive lung disease (so air flow out of the lungs is ‘obstructed’).

Sometimes I find that my muscles feel sore/tired out from coughing and the work of breathing but I wouldn’t say I’ve ever had “chest pain” with my asthma.

As toomuchinfo said, have you ever been investigated or treated for reflux? As that often causes a burning sensation

Hannah125 profile image
Hannah125 in reply to Js706

I've tried anti reflux drugs but they caused side effects so now I only take Gaviscon when I feel like I need it. I do suffer from reflux sometimes but I'm not sure it's the reason why I feel so bad because I've been occasionally having reflux for years and it never caused me any breathing problems. And nowadays I struggle to breath everyday and every hour of the day, it never leaves. If it was reflux, wouldn't there be moments when I'd feel better and without symptoms ?

I never cough but sometimes when I feel like my chest is congested I force myself to cough and I found that it did irritate my lungs more. What I feel most of the time is like an itching sensation in my lungs (mostly the right lung) and tightness in the upper chest which feel very inflammed. Maybe the pain I feel come from the forced coughing. Also, I sometimes have trouble identifying where the inflammation is actually located as most of the time it's in the upper chest. Do you know if trachea inflammation can cause wheezing and asthma symptoms ?

Js706 profile image
Js706 in reply to Hannah125

I’m not sure with the reflux symptoms - it may be if it’s been going on for a while that it’s just caused everything to get a bit irritated and that’s why it’s constant.

Normally asthma is just within the lungs. There is another condition called vocal cord dysfunction that often mimics asthma (and often occurs alongside asthma and they can make each other worse) - it causes upper airway/throat tightness, problems breathing in rather than out and doesn’t respond to asthma medications. Have any of your doctors ever mentioned that? It might be worth asking about

Or with the itching sensation do you take anti-histamines at all? Might be worth trying if not

Hannah125 profile image
Hannah125 in reply to Js706

I've been tested recently for VCD but the doctor said I didn't have it (I had a laryngoscopy done at the hospital) and she said my throat was a little bit irritated but other than that she said my vocal chords were fine. She also said that if it was VCD I wouldn't be able to talk at all. Most of the time I can talk when I'm having shortness of breath but sometimes I feel like I can't talk normally because of how sore and tight my chest feels, I thought that in asthma too it was difficult to talk.

I haven't tried anti-histamines yet because I've read that they are not supposed to help with asthma. Apparently they're only good for rhinitis. I'm not sure if taking them would improve my breathing ? I do have high IgE levels so I'm not sure if it is related to my asthma.

Js706 profile image
Js706 in reply to Hannah125

I've definitely met people with VCD who are able to talk fine! But its good that they've tested and ruled it out.

And yes asthma attacks can make it very difficult to talk.

If your asthma is allergic (which given your IgE is high it may be) then anti-histamines are normally recommended as part of treatment. I've got allergic asthma and take anti-histamines all year round (and notice a big difference if I haven't had them - sometimes it takes them a day or two to source the one I'm on if in hospital and I often get worse until I'm back on it). It might be worth getting some over the counter ones and just seeing if taking those for a couple of weeks makes a difference?

Also have you ever seen a respiratory physio? Asthmatics often develop "breathing pattern disorders" as a result of their asthma symptoms. Which if it persists can make you feel short of breath/tight chested fairly constantly and often doesn't respond well to meds. Just trying to think of all the things I've either had or been checked for with my asthma over the years! (as I present a bit weirdly sometimes too)

Gazza01 profile image
Gazza01 in reply to Hannah125

Hi. If you have had reflux remember this is acid. It burns. It'll make all the nerve endings and the vegus nerve irritated. Taking gaviscon whatever at the time is too late. Also silent reflux you won't even know about. You do need get back on the lanzaprol or whatever you were taking. See the gp they will usually tell you to take them morning and night for a while. Stress is also an asthma trigger so take that into account too. Good luck.

Is it better to take seretide with a spacer or without one ? I've been using a spacer but I'm no longer sure if it's the right thing to do given the fact that it doesn't work at all for me.

EmmaF91 profile image
EmmaF91Community Ambassador in reply to Hannah125

Any MDI inhaler is better with a spacer... it makes you up to 70% more efficient at taking in the drug!

The inflamed throat thing noticed at your laryngoscopy could be linked to acid reflux. It might be worth trying gaviscon 4 times a day regardless of whether it feels like you need it because, if it's silent reflux, you might not know you need it, if that makes sense? But the tightness and pain and some other symptoms might be relieved if it is that. And if there's no change at least you can maybe rule it out?

In my experience, the breathing in is so hard precisely because it is so difficult to breathe out - there isn't enough room for the new breath. I've had all your symptoms, including feeling that my lungs are somehow bruised, but I got better. Have a good look at the asthma UK website and learn as much as you can about it.

Always use a spacer if you can, and make sure you take the time to inhale the stuff properly; it's no use rushing it. Again, guidance is on the asthmauk site. I am sure you will find that once you know what is going on, you can feel calmer, and that in itself will help you heal. Don't try to do too much while you're poorly; you need time to get better.

Lysistrata profile image
LysistrataCommunity Ambassador

Hi Hannah, just a quick note to say that Seretide can be great for some people but doesn't work for everyone! I didn't get along with being on the separate parts of it - just like some do well on Fostair and it's useless for others. Can you ask about trying a different combination inhaler? There are quite a few now which are just as powerful if not more so than the Seretide and may suit you better, if you can persuade the Dr (may be worth researching before you go.

I know you're not in the UK but if you can ring a UK number the Asthma UK nurses are very helpful and might have some ideas for alternatives?)

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