I'm a 40 year old Male, and a smoker for 27 years. For the past 23 years, I've been a heavy cannabis smoker (cannabis and tobacco mixed). Since early 2013, I've been going to my doctor complaining of chest pain, pain under lower left rib (front and back), acid reflux, excessive wind and shortness of breath.
I was finally referred to a general surgery nurse in June 2015, and she sent me for a CT of chest to pelvis.
In August, I was given the results: Emphysema and Tuberculosis scarring (was gobsmacked by this), but no active infection. I am still waiting to be sent for a Spirometry examination; my appointment is January 27th 2016.
My current symptoms are:
- Annoying dull pain/feeling under lower ribs (sometimes front, sometimes back).
- Slight pain when taking a deep breath (left side)
- Reverberating cough on left side
- Feeling unable to take a full lungful of air on left side (most of the time, not all)
I stopped smoking upon diagnosis, and although I've wobbled once or twice, I feel that I won't ever restart. I have a good job, two children (10 and 14) and a cancer survivor wife and I have a couple of questions if anyone could help as my GP practice is uninterested.
1. Is a CT scan conclusive of Emphysema?
2. Will I be able to live a decent life (work full time, exercise, look after my family) with this condition?
Thanks in advance..