Hi, on Friday I started to feel poorly, my peak flow is usually around 300/320, but it had dropped to 250, I managed to get an appointment with my GP for early Saturday morning. At the Doctors my peak flow was down to 200, he prescribed a 7 day course of clarithromycin and 7 days of steroids. Normally I would be picking up a little bit, after a couple of days but I feel so poorly tonight. I am coughing up a lot of mucky rubbish, my ribs hurt like mad, and I was wondering if anyone has any advice to help me feel a bit better. I have had asthma from being a child, and I was also a smoker, but I have not had a fag since July . Thank you Marie. X

17 Replies

  • Hi Mariehope, is there anyone at home with you? I would try and get a doctor to come out but if you are feeling really bad then call an ambulance. It does sound like an infection and maybe you need stronger treatment. Wishing you well and hope you feel better soon. xxxx

  • Sometimes it may take longer. If still feeling poorly tomorrow I would see gp again. I drink a little coffee and it helps some. I live in Nebraska USA and i know it seems to be taking people longer to feel better. Sometimes 2 or 3 weeks. Good luck and i do hope you start feeling better.+

  • Hi Marie, sorry ur feeling poorly, and if ur bringing up mucky phlegm then that's defo sounds like a chest infection, ur ribs will hurt due to coughing and pulled muscles, u seem to on the right meds but they do take a little longer than 36 hours to notice any improvement. If u feel really unwell then plz take urself to A&E , if u feel the same as yesterday after seeing the doc I would give the tablets a bit longer to kick in. Only u know how u feel I can only suggest, but if u really feel worse then yesterday plz go to A&E better to be safe then sorry. Take care x Sonia x

  • make sure you are not alone and if you dont pick up in the next few hours please, please call an ambulance you may have a touch of pneumonia, if you have that needs to be taken care of, please dont wait too long.......hope you feel better soon... Isabel xx

  • I had the same last year and my husband insisted on calling the ambulance and it was a good job he did I landed up really poorly in hospital, I dont want you to leave it any longer,...... please let us know how you are doing..... Isabel xx

  • Morning - I hope that by now you are feeling a little better, but if you are not go straight back to the Doctors. Our Doctor told us when my husband was first diagnosed that if there was no improvement within 48 hours to go back - so please do. Wishing you the speediest recovery. Lots of love TAD xxx

  • Hiya, I hope you've picked up a bit by now Marie.

    The nature of the beast is that we feel extra awful. Plus, antibiotics can also make you feel awful on top. What is your dose of Clarithromycin? I've just finished a course of it at 500mg 2 x daily and it can make you feel foul.

    If you haven't seen the gp yet then please be sure you are seen on the last day of antiB's. If the infection hasn't shifted (which is highly likely) then you'll need another course.

    I recall that when I was at my lowest 3 weeks of high dose Clarith didn't work, I then went on a two month course of Azithromycin which finally did it. That infection took 5 months to shift because my immune system was so low - I wasn't a smoker either.

    In a normal healthy person antiB's would take at least 48hrs to take effect.

    In the meantime, drink plenty to keep your mucus fluid.

    Take paracetamol for the feverish symptoms.

    Take your temperature regularly.

    Do your deep diaphragm breathing to keep your sats up (this is the sort of time you need your own oximeter to keep an eye on your sats, £20 approx via Amazon).

    Personally I would be taking a 1000mg + zinc effervesant 3 times a day - I put mine in a pint glass so I'm drinking masses. You can get 3 for two in Boots or supermarkets. I only buy these and just take half of one in good times.

    Stay in the warm, if you do have to go out, wrap up warm and cover your mouth. Breath in through your nose & out through the mouth when it's cold out.

    When in doubt call your gp. Today you could ring the BLF helpline for guidance 03000 030555, 9-5pm, cost of a local call.

    Good luck, let us know how you get on. P

  • From what I understand of aB it can take a few days to see any difference at all but it may not make you feel better as AB is in effect a poison but targets certain bugs. The steroids should help build you back up. drink plenty and try and clear and remove as much gunk as you can no matter how unpleasant it seems.

    Get well soon.

  • Hi Mariehope,

    Great advice already. Just to add that steam inhalations may help. When I've been at my worst i will do one almost every hour. You can put your head under a towel over a bowl of boiling water (be careful!) but i find that too much to cope with as you get all sweaty; i use an old fashioned Dr. Nelson's medical inhaler which is a bit like a teapot. You can get a modern version from chemists, or you could use a teapot and breathe through the spout - CAUTION: just make sure the water level is not above the spout or you will risk breathing boiling water directly into your lungs.

    You can put in a drop of tea tree essential oil or olbas oil in the container before pouring in the water, both have anti-bacterial qualities.

    This should make it a bit easier to cough stuff up.

    Best of luck :)

  • Hi Marie, sorry to hear you are unwell, I have been like you for several weeks now and had 5 lots of antibiotics and steriods, sometimes because of our illness it can take longer to clear infections, last year I had a flare up which lasted a long time too, our immune system is lower too so with so many people with colds and flu around we are vunerable to catching bugs which turn to infection, it may that you will need another coarse, take care and keep warm, I hope you start to feel better soon.

    Best wishes


  • I will just add - CONGRATULATIONS on giving up the cigarettes.

  • Hi there,i had the same problem few weeks ago started with a cough then drop in peak flow. Gp gave antibiotics and steriods 24 hours later still no improvement and getting worse in end i was admitted to hospital for 8 days. If i was u i would go bk to the gp or go to a&e i know we dont like to be a pest or a drain on them but better to be safe. Im always being told 24 hours should have a slight improvement if not get check out asap good luck

  • Hang in there , that garp is best getting out of your lungs, be glad it is.Nights are always the worst.I would at least call and talk to a nurse, they might give you something for the cough.

  • I have a sort of fan that emits cold air and hot air and I have a window open when the weather permits. I am constantly around 300 - 350. Was told to phone for an ambulance if it goes below 100 so you should be okay. I cough a lot when the room is stuffy. An airy room is good. Stay away from soft toys and dust. I hope you feel better soon. Best wishes for a healthy christmas and new year.


  • shut yourself in the bathroom and run the hot taps or shower (i get it costs) get the room really steamy if you have vic or olbas oil put it in the water breath it in for a bit ... works for me hope it does for you goodluck and i hope you feel better really soon


  • No need to steam the whole room. Pour boiling water into a pyrex dish, put the oil in the water and then place a towel over your head and bowl and breathe the fumes......

  • i only said steam the room as its more gental .... if i use the bowl it makes me cough lol .... was just a suggestion on what i do

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