Newbie feeling low

A few weeks ago, after a chest X-ray, doctor said I had COPD/Emphysema. Apparently, 3 years earlier, a lung function test at the surgery had shown I was borderline COPD. The nurse had reassured me that I didn't have it. Surely they should have told me? 3 years of exercise could have made a difference? I have been so depressed and anxious - feel my life is effectively over. I want to ask for a referral to a specialist, but get the feeling the most you get is an inhaler. Feeling sorry for myself, but very humbled given so many on here are suffering so much more than me.

13 Replies

  • Morning Ginger, please be assured your life is not over. You can still live a long and happy life by making positive lifestyle changes. Do talk to your doctor and get a referral if possible and ask about pulmonary rehab which could benefit you.

    Wishing you well. Xxxxx

  • Dear Ginger - so sorry that information was not given to you before and it is no wonder that you are feeling low at the moment. Do you have an inhaler at the moment? You could ask your GP to refer you for a pulmonary rehabilitation course - many on this site have benefitted greatly from going to one. Never too late to exercise - my choice is walking as much as I can - and eating healthily and both will help you to make the best of your lung function. This site has some very knowledgeable people who will along to help soon.

  • Hi Ginger, maybe the should have said something to you but they didn't however you know now and it's not too late to start with the exercise. You say you feel your life is over but it really isn't, you haven't said what stage you are but I am high moderate. I still work full time and go to festivals and gigs and pretty much do what I want, I have to pace myself and it is more difficult in the winter due to chest infections but I won't let copd control my life maybe just moderate it. I have been lucky in being able to carry on doing stuff and others here are not so lucky but don't assume because you have copd you suddenly have to stop your life, you don't.

    Now I've said that I remember being diagnosed last February and thinking the same as you but luckily found this site and realised that it's not true. Worship the great god exercise and eat healthily and this will help help slow down any progression and you'll carry on as usual for some time to come.

    Good luck and take care

    Shelagh xx

  • Morning Ginger. Your experience with your surgery isn't uncommon unfortunately, but you need to make sure that you get the care you require from now on. Talk to your doctor about your concerns and how you're feeling and ask for a referral. Each health authority works differently and I had to be referred to a consultant who then referred me to PR, yours might work differently. Please be assured that you can maintain a good quality of life for a considerable amount of time if you eat healthily, exercise etc.

    Keep your chin up and let us know how you're doing.

    Take care. Pam XXX

  • Thanks to all of you kind people who replied. I will act on your advice and try to take comfort from your positive comments. Much love xx

  • Welcome ginger and defo no smoking best wishes .

  • Thanks. Gave up 14 years ago and have been one of those very anti ex smokers since. However, was a hard core smoker from a young age. X

  • It happens Ginger - I was diagnosed 15 years after I quit. Take time to get used to this but know that you will get through and cope. After all if you're strong enough to quit smoking after being a heavy smoker, you can deal with this. Diet and exercise as much as you are able - best answer to keeping well, and try to stay away from infection.

    Edit: meant eat well, not go on a diet :)

  • Hi Ginger, whilst I do understand exactly how you are feeling, most of us here have been in the same place, your life is not over by a long shot. A chapter in your life has ended, that is all, you are at the start of another new chapter.

    I have severe COPD yet I still work full time, I live in a 3/4 floor maisonette, with no lift just stairs. I don't drive either, shank's pony is my transport. I can still manage to sail a cruising yacht. Do I get out of breath? Sure I do, so do healthy people, just that I get out of breath sooner, that is all. There is NOTHING to be frightened of getting short of breath. There are others here who's conditions are more severe than mine and they still work also.

    Try and get onto a Pulmonary Rehabilitation Course. A 6/8 week course of 2 hrs. twice a week. Only half of the course is about exercises to help you breath more efficiently the other half is Education about your condition, medication, healthy diet and managing your symptoms.

    The thing is, there is no going back, only forwards. I really hope you can accept that "it is what it is" and decide to get on with life again. Some things admittedly, you won't be able to do anymore, but think of all the other things in life you have wanted to do but never found time for. Personally there are not enough hours in a day to do all I want to do, or achieve, or learn.

  • Hello Ginger and welcome.

    It happens quite a lot and your life hasn't ended! When you're ready contact your surgery and ask for lung function tests so that you'll know a bit more about where you are.

    You could also go to the BLF website and look at the information packs they have which will tell you more about COPD - but don't google because lots of the information is inaccurate.

    Good luck and be well,

    Sue x

  • Good advice above - just want to say hello and welcome.

  • Thank you xx

  • Hi Ginger it's not easy when we get bad news about your health but as others have said your life is not over, just a different chapter beginning. I can get where you're coming from as I was diagnosed with PH and scleroderma last December out of the blue and felt that my world had collapsed. Focus on what you can do and make any changes you can make which would benefit your health situation as it's never too late. Life does go on and there's lots of it for living out there. Take care X

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