Non-infective exacerbation

Have returned from a six day hospital admission with an exacerbation that did not involve an infection. On admission had acute on chronic hypoxic respiratory failure, hypocalcemia, elevated CPR, leukocytosis and mild renal impairment with elevated urea. My BP normally well behaved becomes extremely erratic when I am unwell and was swinging from one extreme to the other. Was treated with 50mg Prednisone and oxygen along with usual nebs. Still a wheezing a bit and reducing prednisone, fingers crossed all will settle back to my usual.

It's a bit scary to know that I can have such a scary exacerbation without an infection being involved. One good outcome is a referral to pulmonary rehab, may not happen til the new year but good that it;s in the pipeline.

14 Replies

So sorry to hear you were ill. One positive though is the PR. Do chase it up in January and make sure it happens. :)


I have had two non infection hospital admissions, and one A&E admission.

The first was a trigger, automatic air freshener , at the daughters.

Second was put down as Anxiety.

The A&E was a a panic attract whilst out shopping.

I have had PR.

Extra medication recommended. Oramorph. and Lorazepam plus sleeping elevated.

Thanks for your reply Stone, reassuring to hear I'm not alone with this non infection thing. I am really not aware of any particular trigger although I did wonder if it was an allergic type reaction, being Spring here. It was a build up I had been unwell for about ten days but as there was no sign of infection thought it would pass. Will be less likely to leave it go on so long next time, if there is a next time.

Very interesting Suzie ! I had two major admissions in 2014 with non-infective exacerbations and apart from not coughing up mucous, everything else was just as bad. They did think that there was infection there but they could find no signs of it other then my breathing problems and pain. Now in with a very definite infective exacerbation and thought it might be easier for them to tackle but not much luck so far. Finding the oxygen very helpful, steroids not so much. Great that you got the PR referral from the experience, so at least there was one positive outcome.

Hi Billiejean, thanks for your response. Sorry to hear that you are not doing so well at present and hope that improves for you soon.

This was my first admission since December last year when I had a bad infection. It seems I am producing copious amounts of clear mucous and coughing with it. I still wonder if there may be an allergy component to this exacerbation. I also found that I felt the oxygen helpful while on it in hospital, I do not have oxygen at home, it is a bit disappointing that the steroids do not seem to do the job that they once did.

Looking forward to improvements through PR.

Sorry to hear that you have been ill. Must have been pretty scary for you. Hope you stay well. I have just started PR and hope that it will make a big difference for me. Xx

Thanks Lyn1951,

What troubled me most was the fact that this could happen without infection being present. It is like it can blindside you, you have some indicators when you are getting an infection. When you just don't feel good with no sign of infection you tend to put it down to just a bad day or ten, at least that is how I have felt in the past. I don't want to get so that I worry every time I have a few bad days.

Good luck to us both with PR, I have a lot of faith that it will be very helpful.

hope your feeling a lot better soon

Thanks mmzetor,

Slowly starting to feel a little better, still very SOB and wheezing but better. Hope you are doing well.

Hi Suze4212, was reading your post as I am suffering ups and downs on my COPD the last few months. Glad to hear you have been referred to PR. Think I might have to return to the Gym myself as I have an exacerbation that seems none infectious reeking havoc with my breathing , Bp, oygen levels, and lung capacity readings. No temperature or coloured sputum. So it would seem we can get flares that are not from infection and I agree with you it is scary.Hope you are back to normal soon , relax and take care x

Hi katieoxo60

Thanks for your response. Sorry to hear you are having these exacerbations with no infection also. I query whether there may be an allergy factor involved with these.

Here's hoping things settle for us both sooner rather than later.

In my case on this occasion, I was exposed to a person with infection which has caused inflammation, it seems to be getting better day by day so see how it goes when I go out today. Allergy factors do play a part in some flare ups. Agree hope it clears for us both soon, my mums funeral is next Tuesday so I hope mine is better by then.

My condolences on your mums passing, hope you are feeling better.

At least with the infection you have something to cough up !

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