4 year old with chest infections - British Lung Foun...

British Lung Foundation
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4 year old with chest infections


Hi. My daughter keeps gettong chest infections which result in her struggling for breath, always on antobiotics, generally over night stays in hospital.

She has started again with the tell tale signs. She has a runny nose, very clingy to me and a dry cough.

Is there anything I can do to try and prevent this? Why does she keep getting them? When she is well she doesnt struggle with breathing when doing activities and no wheeze so drs have said isnt asthma.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated

10 Replies

Has the doctor checked your daughter thoroughly? Children often get colds etc. but not usually chest infections. This needs further investigation amysmith and l hope all goes well for your little girl. Xxx

I'm so sorry it must be very upsetting for you she is so young.

I try to keep away from people with flu with having COPD even more so at this time of year.

I hope your daughter is feeling better soon and you get some answers

Hi, I'm really sorry to hear this. I had similar worries with my son but he was diagnosed with asthma at 3 in another country. My daughter has had the same situation with her little one. She's been repeatedly told they cannot dx a small child with asthma, even though they were given Ventolin with a baby mask when she was 1. They always denied it was asthma and yet the Ventolin worked wonders.

I supported my daughter to persevere and continually go back to GPs. Finally a Belgian gp at their practice said he thought all the British rules were rubbish, of course she has asthma and now she's got the proper preventer and reliever. She's always worse in the winter.

All I can say is persevere, read up as much as possible so you understand about airways etc.

word of warning, always check your child's medications against the leaflet and proper dosage. My granddaughter was prescribed the adult dose of Azithromycin at 18 months by mistake. Almost wrecked her digestive system poor mite.

Good luck.....perhaps a call to the BLF helpline on Monday to speak to experts. 0300030555 office hours. P

Wish I had some ideas to give you, there's nothing worse for a parent than a sick child. What lung conditions has your daughter been tested for? I agree with sassy59 she needs continuing investigations until they get a proper diagnosis. I know asthma is the most common lung problem in children, but there are many others. Are you confident in her consultant, ie that s/he's really good in the field of paediatric respiratory medicine? If not, get a referral to someone else. If you're within reasonable travelling distance of London, the Brompton would be my choice.

in reply to Hanne62

Hi, I totally agree, ,get a second or Evans a third diagnosis. Your child should not suffer, good luck


Very young to be getting continuous chest infections,may I suggest you ask your gp to have a blood test and check your daughter for Alpha1.

Thanks for the replies everyone. All the drs keep saying when I ask is its just unlucky. One of those things. I pushed hard to get a referal to paedeatrics and they did another chest x-ray. Showed me the one where she was previously in hospital and the one they had just done to show me that it was now clear from infection. He then listened to her chest said he was happy it was clear, asked me if generally is she fit and well (she is) and if she gets out of breath easily during activities (she doesn't)

I had asthma as a child and my mum said I didnt used to get out of breath generally doing things more if I had a cold.

So he pretty much said. She is fine 😕 she had blood tests at the hospital when she was first admitted and I was told they were fine.

Feel so helpless. If ever I ask her if she feels poorly she instantly denies it when she clearly isn't well becausr she thinks if she is poorly she will end up in hospital 😧


Amy perhaps you yourself should start looking into building up your daughters immune system. I would warn you through past experience not to go down the drugs road in doing this. Look online and check out healthy diets at first and see if that helps, try smoothies (kids love smoothies) made from anti imflamitory fruits or veggies mix some kale with the fruits. I spent a lot of years on various drugs to fight my infections but in 2010 I was put on long term anti's and I also started looking at what I ate and started eating more healthy foods. I have not had a serious lung infection since 2011. I just wish this had happened sooner it would have saved a lot of lung damage.

By the way they still do not check bloods for Alpha1 you have to ask them to.

Alpha1 is a protien deficiency of antitryspin this can get blocked in the liver and without it you get loads of infections and because of the lack of it in the blood the body cannot ward off bugs that cause infections. So the the lungs get infected and scarred and later in life you can have all sorts of problems because of it.

May I also say this is an herediary disorder so if anybody in the family as suffered with chest problems then it is definetely worth asking about.

I was one of nine, my parents never suffered chest problems that I know of, but my grandparents did so my mum and dad may well have been carriers and I got both of their dodgy genes, my eight brothers and sisters do not sufffer with any chest problems. So I reckon I was unlucky and got it off my parents or I was swapped in the hospital..lol

Good luck.

Forgot to say... My daughter now ensures the children have a good multivitamin every day and always probiotics during and for a while after any antibiotics. Does your daughter eat well? Kiwi is excellent for vitamin C, hence boosting immune system. P

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