a disgruntled asthmatic

sent an e-mail earlier don't know if its been received so just to re-cap,was at my doctors for something unrelated to my asthma when a was informed I am using too many inhalers which is usually 1 every month or so,I tried to explain the reasons behind my use which are = training twice weekly 2hrs gruelling sessions of mixed martial arts which are really intense,mountain biking with club which entails 30-40 klms 2-3 times weekly then a have my walking which a usually do at weekends mainly in the highlands,so the need for ventolin is quite high,to use an inhaler every 3 months I said that be fine if a sat at home doing nothing an I don't want to change my itinery to suit said doctors,any suggestions?

ps[aa a footnote;a few yrs ago I was 20st could,nt tie shoelaces am now very active having lost 4st will list what am on[ventolin inhaler-fostair inhaler-montelukast 1daily-flixonase 1-2 daily thankyou.


11 Replies

  • Hi,hitman. If you look at coughalot2 post called I HAD A CHAT WITH MY PHARMACIST there are some replies about Ventolin.

    I was wondering how long you had been on the Fostair...I tried it but went back to Clenil, which is just a preventer.

    The British Lung Foundation have a helpline you can email or ring for advice...they are open again on Monday if you live in the UK. 03000 030 555

    Take care and congratulations on the weight loss.

  • thanks for your reply,its the use of inhaler[blue one] that's the problem an the use of ie should,nt have more than 3 per year which would in my case be impossible,am know in contact with other users an there having similar problems,cutbacks I think

  • Well done on the weight loss and being so active despite your asthma. You are doing well. Don't know what to suggest about ft he ventolin. I tried taking it before I went to the gym too but didn't seem o make w difference for me. Also read that having a drink of caffeinated coffee before you do exercise helps but didn't make any difference to me. There are a few discussions on here about inhalers maybe there is a re that may help. One discussion was earlier this week maybe you an look it up.

    All the best



  • hi freefaller,I would be interested to know what your usage of said inhaler is an if your doctor has broached the subject on usage,I don't mind seeing the asthma nurse but find being treated like a scorned child quite hard,count to ten most times

  • Oh so sorry. Wrote a reply and it disappeared again. No one has ever questioned me about usage of ventolin. There is a date on my repeat prescription and it currently says that I cannot ask for ventolin until Feb 2016. Which shows just how much I was using in the first 6 months of this year and must have already asked for it "out of time" but nothing said. Know I would not be denied it though. Have a friend who always ups her intake of all inhalers at this time of year and nothing said to her either.

    Very annoying that you are doing all the right things and being told this. Heck you don't even get free prescriptions - not that that should make a difference.

    Have you had a word with your GP yet? Have you contacted the BLF Helpline. This seems to be happening far too often and BLF should be made aware of this. Maybe they could aim some literature at GPs to try and stop this.



  • all prescriptions are free here in Scotland at least,I contacted blf an got the exact same response as my doctor so no help there,my doctor quoted 3 inhalers a year,thats when I responded saying its an impossibility ad be in hospital more than a was out,now if that's good management theres something wrong an needs fixed,thanks for your reply take care.

  • Hello. Not surprised you're disgruntled. Two points: 1. If you need your ventolin, you need it, end of. It's not good for you to try & exercise when wheezy & breathless, that puts a strain on your heart etc 2. It's your GP's job to get your asthma under control so you don't need ventolin so often - what's he doing about that? May I ask what other inhalers you use?

  • First of all, well done on getting so active and I'd start by echoing the point that you should never not take a blue inhaler if you feel you need it. However I have a few thoughts that may or may not help you!

    I can see why this problem is arising from their perspective. One inhaler per month equates to around 6 inhalations per day which according to the general guidelines for asthma management implies very badly managed asthma. Now your asthma seems very well under control so they obviously have a dilemma.

    Have you tried doing any of your sessions without taking the blue one, or are you finding after starting a sesssion you need to take more? Everyone who has had asthma a long time recognises that feeling of panic when they don't take it at times when they always have, through forgetting it or whatever, so perhaps analyse the times you are taking it & assess for yourself how essential it is & what you feel would happen if you didn't. But (in my very personal opinion) you should be setting your own targets of how to get to a point where the blue one is unnecessary, or at least peripheral rather than setting your stall out that you need one a month. The transition away from reliance on relievers can be psychologically as well as physically quite difficult but it actually isn't good for you long-term to be taking such a high dose.

    If the answer is that you will always get symptoms then you probably need to have a more detailed conversation with someone around whether your medication regime is right for your lifestyle (remember there are Olympic medal winning athletes & Premier League footballers out there with asthma so the evidence will exist about how to manage asthma for people on extremely exerting regimes like you).

    I hope that's useful; ultimately only you know exactly how you feel but I just wanted to offer a bit of a different perspective which I hope helps you find the right answers. Feel free to ignore me!!


  • cheers mate a would never ignore someone who,s trying to be helpful,yes am trying to get to a point in training but then am having to stop,its the same going up mountains you get to a point then have to stop because am trying to not take it ie inhaler,so when then does it become dangerous not to inhale,am trying to push the bounderies,at this time of year just going outdoor in cold conditions can make me stop an gulp as the cold air reaches my lungs,I will not go back to what a was that's the wrong way forward,once again thanks for a different perspective.

  • Hi hitman. I have exercise-induced asthma too. I take ventolin, montelukast, serevent+flixotide (that's similar to your fostair) and - which has really made a difference to me recently - spiriva now too. This was originally a copd drug but last year, following further clinical trials, its licence was extended to treat asthma too. So far it seems to be helping me a lot. Perhaps you could ask your gp about adding it to your prescription?

  • thanks all take note of said medications as a have an asthma review on the 27th,its quite hard to be told you have abused medication when in reality your trying to keep fit,it angered me at first but on further thought the doctor was only taking my health into account.from barely being able to tie shoelaces ti walking an mma training been a huge leap forward,a now find hard to hold back hahahaha swapping one addiction for another ie keep fit

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