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British Lung Foundation
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Oxygen does it help sob

I have been waiting now 2 months to see a consultant. And still have no date. I pushed my doctor to refer me because I am deteriorating rapidly and my o2 levels are 84 when I try to do anything. I am going to ring to try and get a private consultation. Because my o2 is 92 when I am sat at the surgery and I have avoided a&e. She thinks I am stable. My question is does oxygen relieve breathlessness or is it just to protect vital organs. Just walking a few steps now is becoming intolerable. I have been to rehab. And learnt all the breathing techniques and I have the blf dvd for exercises which is good. So I am now looking for anything else that can help me. I am getting frightened and desperate.

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Hi

Oxygen is primarily to protect your major organs, it will take the edge of breathlessness by maintaining a oxygen saturation of 90%/92%.

Which if you slow your pace down then the sob won’t be so deliberating.

As GP are no responsible for oxygen therapy you need a referral to the respitory team at local hospital fir assessment.

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Is this different from seeing a consultant? And do I have to ask the doctor to do this?

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Hi

The consultant or GP will give a referral for oxygen assessment.mine was done pre pulmonary rehabilitation, then transferred to the oxygen team.

The problem with GPs, that after you been in the waiting room for a period, then sat down in surgery by the time they check your O2 it’s normal.

When I when for my flu jab, the procedure stand up, coat of ,sit-down,

Jab, standup coat on. At which time my breathing was laboured, no comments from nurse.

Two weeks late at pulmonary rehabilitation assessment, same procedure but for blood pressure. Only this time nurse rechecked my sats, and ask me to come back for Ambulitory oxygen assessment, result on oxygen 2lpm! And thinking back I probably should have been on oxygen sooner. If only practice nurse would look at the possible need for oxygen therapy as a consideration.

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As Stone says ,oxygen is given to protect your major organs mainly but I do feel that it helps breathlessness in my case. You mention that you went to rehab and I'm surprised that you had no difficulty there and that the physios didn't motice anything. Some people get very breathless but their oxygen levels stay good. Like you when I'm sitting at the computer I'm okay but if I stand up and try to do anything my oxygen levels drop. The only way for you to find out if you need oxygen is to insist that you need to be assessd. Good luck, Sheila x

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It's 3years ago since I went to rehab. And I wasn't too bad then. I have been doing everything suggested on my own since. Was slowly declining but now after a few chest infections this year the decline is rapid.

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Hi Tilantoe I can only say again that you should ask to be assessed. If your doctor's not very cooperative try the respiritory nurse at the surgery. As a last resort, it may seem a bit devious, but you have to look out for you, try to get on a pulmonary rehab course. The physios there will refer you if they think it's necessary. Sheila x

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Have you been referred to an oxygen nurse at the vic ? (You are in blackpool i think ). They are fantastic, with me they have been life savers and tbey make the decisions regards oxygen. Best wishes.

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Thankyou for all your replies. I have just rung respiratory nurse. She said as she was not a specialist she can't refer me. She just does annual checks and sorts out inhalers. But can't give me anything new. She has made me an appointment to see another doc. Who might be more helpful with everything. I go teatime today. When my son can take me. As I have lost all confidence of going out now on my own. I am also going to ask him about how much to see consultant privately. As I feel I am dying slowly and the so called professionals are just not listening to me. Just hope this doc. Is better than the last one. And helps to get me sorted.

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Good luck for later, and let us know how you get on x

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Thankyou

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New doc. Refered me for private consultation. Should get one in the next day or so. He said I should have a least got an appointment on the nhs even if it meant waiting a while to see someone

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Thats great news, make sure you make a list of every thing you need to ask as its so frustrating remembering once you leave.

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Got an appointment on Monday evening to see consultant. £235.00. A lot of money but if I can get some answers and action it will be worth it.

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It's not fair you have had to pay for the consultation in my opinion but at least you now have an appointment so good luck 😀😀. I look forward to hearing the result. Take care. X

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Hi Tilantoe.....wondering how you got on after your consultation? Hope it was beneficial . 😀

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Sorry for delay in answering you. And I thankyou for thinking of me. It's much appreciated. The consultant did what he said he would do. I have had ct scan, bone scan, oxygen assessment, spirometry and breathing tests and going for blood test next week. He also gave me the trimbow to try. I am now waiting for an appointment to discuss all the results of the above. To see where we go from here. But, regarding the oxygen she told me it wont benefit me at the moment. And gave me an appointment for 6 months in case things change.

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