need help with pleurisy

I recently was told i have viral pleurisy. Ive never had it before but its been quite debilitating. My problem is I work in construction and Haven't been able to work for the last three weeks. I'm 32 and I have never been ill for this long. I did try returning to work 2 or 3 times and had to leave early i couldn't catch my breath and could barely lift my arm because my chest hurt so badly. im hoping someone could help me with how long this might last, if there is anything i can do to help it heal faster or to be able to return to work. Also i assume it did but am wondering if i prolonged the illness by trying to return to work too soon. I would really appreciate any advice or help. This is all new to me thanks so much

12 Replies

pleurisy is a pain but anti inflammatorys are now your best friend. I've had it a cupple of times and it normally lasts a few weeks but subsides over that period of time. I was taking 600mg of ibprofin every 4hrs

I hope that helps x

It does yes thank guess my main concern is going back to work I'm supposed to tomorrow but don't know if it will make this worse. Also there is a lump on my chest under my collar bone that is still as large as it was when I was first diagnosed idk what it is but its worrisome

If you work in a dusty environment it won't help unfortunately but I understand the need to work but making a effort to avoid aggravateing you chest where you can will make all the difference in you recovery time. As for the lump I'd go back to the doctors and get them to have a look tho the anti inflammatorys should help some


Ok thanks for the advice I really appreciate it

Pleurisy as well as being a real pain (!) can last for some time. Even after the initial pain goes the debilitating effects can continue. It IS a serious illness and should be treated as such.

Not sure if you are receiving sick pay but it does seem too early to be trying to return to work.

I've known two people who've had pleurisy (thankfully not had it myself) and I'd say you need to give yourself more time to recover, especially given the type of working environment that you'll be returning to. It's not a trivial illness and I would imagine that you may well prolong your recovery by going back too soon - it's not as if you're going to be sitting in an office all day, is it.

From experience I think you are pushing things too fast. Plurisy can as others have said take time to heal.

Hi feedumb. Pleurisy is horrible. It is severe inflammation of the pleural membrane around the lungs which causes stickiness and pain because the membrane is rubbing against itself. It takes a long time - months usually for the membrane to heal and the pain to dissipate. There is a risk that if you return to what is a very physical job too soon, you will put strain on the membrane and a bacterial infection will set in. Also, the damage to the membrane and the pain do not allow you to breathe properly, which affects the way in which your whole body responds. Pain killers will probably mask the symptoms but not contribute to the healing. You really do need to rest until you are properly healed. I know that this must be difficult for a young person who is used to getting over illnessesses quickly. You can't hurry pleurisy and need to have respect for it. I do think that you need to go back to your doctor about the lump which, from your post, seems to have appeared at the same time as the pleurisy. When you see your doctor get sickness notes and payments sorted out so that you can rest and heal without worrying too much about money.

Hi, I have got pleurisy too and it can take few weeks to recover. I did the same as you and tried to go back to work to early. I've since learnt you have to rest to aid recovery. Ask your GP for some antiinflammatory tablets to help with the pain. Hope you feel better soon. Jan x

Hi there you are very young to be so ill. Do you have a history of chest or breathing complaints. You have to get better. Before you can go back to work. I got ill. Young and never recovered I was 42. And got steadily worse. I've been on o2 the last 5 yrs. only. If you was. A chesty kid always getting infection every winter then maybe a idea to. Get checked for a condition A1AD. But. More then likely you where work in building you have breathed in. Something nasty. And made you ill. I. Worked. For a bit on. Sites. Dam hard work. There. Could be. All sorts of things on site that could of made you ill. Oh that testis a simple. Blood test. I don't want to worry you. But if you had it. Then you need to meds that help stop infection and you would be advised to change trades . Wellli wish you. Well. Take care. Paul

I really appreciate the info, this is all new for me. I've been in the trades since I was a teenager and the thought of starting over and doing something else is hard to accept. Im currently working in the private sector for a smaller company so sick pay is minimal at best. I haven't filed for disability or anything i had no idea I was going to be unable to work this long in fact when the doctor initially told me a couple weeks to heal I laughed and thought it was over board. I've never had an illness keep me down for more than 2-3 days and never been prone to getting sick. I havent needed to see a doctor since I was in my mid 20's and that was only because I got injured at work. I currently don't have a GP we moved a year or two ago and i honestly haven't needed one. I just went to an urgent care type clinic and was told I had this i was reluctant to even go there i hate going to the doctor and always have. my girlfriend more or less forced to go to urgent care before And now really wants me to see see a doctor again im trying my best to avoid it, hence the forums. Its insanely expensive and i was told before that there isn't really a treatment for this that I just have to let my body heal so would it even do Any good to go back I feel a little overwhelmed by all this my gf and my son depend on me so I need to get back to work asap I really do appreciate any advice

Having read your response I am am very concerned about you. You need to go and register with a GP now and at the same time get checked over. Visits to 'emergency care type places' are notoriously unsure ways to get a proper diagnosis, let alone ongoing treatment.

As you have a lump at the top of your chest you may even have injured yourself at work. Only an xray would show. Your girlfriend is right and very sensible. A visit to a good GP will begin the process of discovering if you have pleurisy or not and put you on the road to recovery. We are all good hearted on here but we are not doctors. We cannot diagnose you, only support you. Please be kind to yourself and get the help of a GP.

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