British Lung Foundation

Hi I'm new here

Hi,

I was told yesterday by practice nurse that I have mild COPD and I am in a complete state of,panic and upset. I have no idea what this means, I'm pretty active but do,get tired easily and sleep a lot. I have an appt with a GP on Monday so it's going to be a long weekend worrying. I think once I know more and I can do things to manage it I'll feel better, but right now I'm scared as I have no idea how quickly this thing progresses. I'm nearly 60 and had been hoping to enjoy a long retirement from 2019 but I guess I can scrap that idea. Sorry if this is a pity party but just wanted to tell someone how I feel right now.

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Welcome Annbeth :) It is very scary when first diagnosed. I was diagnosed well into the moderate stage when I was 55 and terrified. Im 71 now and still going strong. Management will be key. Exercise - ask your GP for a referral to pulmonary rehabilitation, a course of exercise and education about copd and other lung diseases. A good diet and avoidance of pollution and unwell people will be crucial too - it's really important to avoid infection wherever possible - educate your friends and relatives to keep away when they are unwell. Assuming you don't have other critical diagnoses, there's no reason why you can't enjoy your retirement, just adapting and pacing yourself when necessary. Best wishes, :)

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Thankyou O2Trees,. It's good to hear that you are managing well ! I guess I'm also scared in case of other diagnoses but will have to wait till Monday for that ordeal fit comes. Thankyou for such a positive reply , I'm quite active now now but need to do more and I can definitely improve my diet. Do you take any supplements or multi-vitamins at all..it would be good to know of any that are effective.

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Most people with copd are deficient in Vitamin D3 - I take 4000 iu of that. I take 5 grams of organic turmeric which you can buy online in my cooking daily as it's good for inflammation. Im sure you'll get lots of answers about supplements from other members too.

Im assuming since you don't mention it that you aren't smoking now. Though in fact 20% of people with copd have never smoked and have it due to other pollutants or genetic predisposition.

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Thanks 02 sadly I am a smoker and have set Saturday as my give up day. OH who smokes has been told he can no longer smoke in the house. Ok off to google D3,. Good excuse for more curries with the Tumeric ..I'm assuming need to get best organic grade possible.

A

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Hi Annbeth nice to meet you and welcome to the site. I can't add to the great advice you have been given except that I was diagnosed mild at 54. 9 years later I am still mild. The doctor told me something else would get me first ie old age.

If you do start taking any supplements make sure your doctor knows as they can interact with any other meds you take.

I gave up smoking around 4 months ago after being a heavy smoker for 44 years. It was and is hard but it's worth it for my health. There is a very good quit smoking site on here and they helped me enormously. If you type in 'Quit' it will come up. x

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Thanks hypercat, good to hear your story, Thankyou. I think I will need help quitting so will scurry off and do as you suggest.

X

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Ha ha Annbeth I will see you on there. They are a great bunch who all know what it's like. Some have gone cold turkey (not for me shudderrrr) others have used patches, but it's whatever suits you best.

I lurked on there for a good couple of months soaking up all the positivity to counter all the negatives in my real life 'You will never pack it in' etc. before I went ahead and shoved a patch on to see what would happen!

I find I cough much less, I can walk faster and up hills more easily, have more energy, I look better and so on. There are so many positives to packing the evil weed in. x

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Hello Annbeth .

Welcome. 😃 And no , you can keep the party plans. 🎉🎶🎁

What kind of tests have you done for the nurse to give you that diagnosis? I was just a little surprised since it seemed rather unexpected.

Many of our members here have had COPD for many years and although there are sometimes struggles (like most people have anyway with or without a lung disease) you will see that a vast majority enjoy life. And live long and productive ones too.

Diet, and exercise are very important to maintain your fitness levels and of course if you smoke it would be a good time to reconsider. Pulmonary rehabilitation also can be very beneficial.

Don't panic. It is scary at first to get the diagnosis, but you will learn how to work with it. 😃

The party isn't over till it's over, and besides it wouldn't be a party without you.

Best wishes to you.

Cas xx 🌹

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Ha ha Thankyou Cas.

I have had a cough for sometime and was hit very hard with two consecutive lung infections in Sept/Oct and just havnt really stopped coughing since so X.ray and lung functions tests were organised. I still have no idea what X-ray showed so will,find out Monday. Nurse said she couldn't give me a detailed reading of what the results meant but told me I did have mild COPD.

I shall plan my retirement then xx

A

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Plan away!!! 😃👑 xx

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Hi Annbeth and welcome to the forum. As you can already see, you have found exactly the right place to share your worries and receive excellent advice.

Your diagnosis is only mild, so if you persevere with giving up smoking and get yourself on to a PR course as already advised - you will learn so much there - then you should be able to halt any progression of the COPD and enjoy your retirement as you've always planned. In fact because of this timely warning you will probably find yourself fitter than many who've had no such diagnosis.

You've had great advice already so I won't repeat everything, but you could phone the BLF Helpline (03000 030 555 office hours, Mon-Fri) before Monday, and they might be able to help with ideas of what questions you could be asking your GP in order to get the most suitable treatment for you.

Let us know how you get on. Very best wishes, Jan :-)

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Thanks Jabber that's a really good idea, I'll ring them today. X

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Well my first experience of the helpline wasn't great as there was no one available to talk me through what I should ask the GP, so I sobbed (totally embarrassing) and the poor guy didn't know what to say so I just said goodbye. :(

However I have found something on the site called a passport or something which gives me a list so have it downloaded to my phone ..just got ta remember to take my phone Monday 😀

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Oh dear. I'm sorry you didn't have a good experience with the helpline, but I'm glad you've found something else that is helpful. I haven't heard of the passport before. I hope it does turn out to be useful.

Let us know what your GP has to say on Monday. I hope s/he will recommend Pulmonary Rehab, and possibly refer you to a Respiratory Consultant who will be experienced with COPD and up to date on the latest meds. I believe you really need to have a CT scan to confirm a diagnosis of COPD, and I think your consultant would arrange that.

Is it possible for someone to go with you to your GP? It always helps me to have another pair of ears listening, as I can never remember details of what was said. I also think it's a good idea to make a list of everything you know you want to ask about.

Have a good weekend and try not to worry. Jan :-)

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Thanks Jan

I'll make a list tomorrow, not sure if anyone is available to go with me, OH cannot get out of work but will see if my bestie can. I'll add referral to consultant to my list and CT scan.. Many thanks

A

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Hi, please don’t worry about this, mild COPD is what I myself have and was diagnosed 3yrs ago. I’ve had a few chest infections which are treated rapidly and successfully with antibiotics and steroids. It’s not the death sentence many seem to think not nowadays anyway. There are a lot of things you can do, stop smoking if you do, excersise to your best ability, eat the healthiest you can afford to, stay away from people whoa everyone flu and coughs and colds, AVOID STRESS lol lol sounds like you’re stressed at the moment though. I have Asthma as well as COPD so I take 2 different inhalers and a tablet twice a day every day and have a reliever inhaler too. Your Doc will give you what you need when you see him on Monday. Please be assured you’re OK and haven’t been served a death sentence. The tiredness is a part of it, as is lack of energy but you’ll learn to cope with that. In the 3yrs since my diagnosis I haven’t gotten any worse at all xx

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thankyou Weeannie, until I see the Dr I think I'm just gonna be scared but this forum is great and helped me calm down yesterday. Ive started breathing exercises which helped with my out of control anxiety yesterday. I just keep catching sight of 'end of life' references on BLF site which then sends me into panic. Anyway have a few meetings at work today to keep me occupied hopefully.

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Hello and welcome Annbeth x

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AnnBeth, good morning from cold and frosty and snowy Ayrshire. “end stage” COPD is again NOT a death knoll. It means that there isn’t a lot more that can be done that isn’t already being done. It’s the stage you reach when apart from some hospital stays there’s no more treatment available at home. People go on for years with end stage COPD. PLEASE DONT READ WEB SITES this way madness lies lol lol British Lung Foundation web site is the only one I trust. It’s clear ready available information full of answers xx

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Good morning

Don’t worry too much but speak to your Gp.

The nurse at my surgery initially diagnosed me with copd, but when I had further breathing tests at the hospital the diagnosed me with asthma. It will possibly become copd one day I understand.

I think stress is the biggest negative impact, breathing issues make you anxious, so does stress and it’s difficult to differentiate!

However mild sounds good.

My doctor tested my breathing when I was still wheezing with a chest infection!

Most important..... stop smoking. Try Champix from your GP. It worked for me!

Good luck and take good care

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