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British Lung Foundation

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Hi All,

I am new here and uncertain on just about everything surrounding this forum and my new found condition.

Around New Year time, I was coughing continually. It was so bad that I found myself using an old inhaler that my daughter was prescribed for suspected asthma some months back (she is fine now by the way). My first visit to the doctor was a non event. He told me my coughing would pass as it was nothing to worry about. I went back again a week later, still suffering from a very persistent cough. After being asked if I had been to China or if anyone in my household had, I was again told not to worry and sent home. A month passed and I was no better. I could not get an appointment on the day to see my doctor, so went to the local walk in centre. Again I was asked about China as well as any recent international travel, and sent home with the same message of not to worry.

After roughly 6 weeks of coughing, I went back to my doctor. This time I demanded an xray. I was sent for one some time later. My doctors surgery phoned me to inform that because of the virus, the doctor would not be seeing anyone face to face, but would call me the following morning with my results. He did and advised me that he is 99% sure I have COPD/Emphysema and that I will be required to have a scan and see "the consultant". I was advised that an appointment will be sent to me shortly. That was just over 4 weeks ago. I have now called the surgery, and was informed that I shall not be having a scan or seeing anyone until after Covid 19 has cleared, but not to worry (again) and someone will be in touch.

Guess what?....... I'm worrying.

I feel fine, no coughing at all now, just a feeling of apprehension, fear and bewilderment. Apologies for the long and rambling post, but I just had to get this off my chest.....forgive the pun 😊

21 Replies

Hi Seahawk, good to meet you and have you as part of this great community.

Its very difficult to get much done at the moment but hopefully you will get your scan soon. Stay in touch as this is a very friendly forum.

Stay safe xxxx😘

I will put my head on the block by saying that, virtually all of us diagnosed with not just COPD but a diagnosis of any lung disease has experience the same shock, horror and bewilderment that you feel. The real important thing is that if you smoke then quit asap, this will slow down the progression of the disease. I know the temptation is to start to google your diagnosis but please don't, on many of the pages the information will be out of date or just plain wrong, paint a very gloomy picture and have you dead in a few clicks. You can and will be able to live with this disease with the correct management. It is unfortunate that this has happened to you period, let alone in these troubled times.

Although this disease is "Chronic", progressive and no cure yet. It is important to realise that if you do not smoke then that progression is very slow. Your surgery is right to tell you not to worry. Eat a healthy diet and exercise regularly, no smoking and you will remain reasonably stable until you see a specialist and have further tests. Stop worrying about it, as anxiety is no friend and actually make you worse, it can even make you ill. I have very severe emphysema with multiple other health issues and still enjoying life. No doubt others will be along soon and tell you the same, COPD is a lot more common than you may think.

SeahawkUK in reply to 2greys

Thanks 2greys,

You are absolutely correct about googling COPD. It really has scared the life out of me and I will try and stop this practice.

I was a smoker of about 40+ years. I quit on 4 January this year (before I knew I had COPD). I will be 5 months completely smoke free on Saturday 24 May.

I am scared but will have to sit tight (and not google) until I have had the scan and the consultant gives me his views/instructions.

Thanks again for your positive feedback.

Yatzy in reply to 2greys

Well said, 2greys. Makes a lot of sense.

Where would we be without you?? So glad you’ve been able to return.

Hope you’re getting stronger, post virus, by the day ❤️

Bingo88 in reply to 2greys

2greys. Thank you. Great reply to Seahawk. You told us more than any doctor i seen told me. So thanks for that. Brian


Hello Seahawk lovely to meet you, please don't worry you will get your scan when they feel it's safe to do so. Have a lovely day and take care of yourself 😊 Bernadette xx xx 🌈


Welcome Seahawk. You have had some good advice. Definitely stay away from Google, but for more information about COPD, visit the BLF website.

Wishing you well.

Hi,given that your GP hasn't performed a spirometry test,he or she would not know if you have COPD or not.It is the only way to make a diagnosis . Lung damage seen via an xray does not mean you have COPD. Please try not to worry as no doubt the consultant will arrange the proper route to a diagnosis .

SeahawkUK in reply to Hoobs

Thanks Hoobs

I also read that and wondered how he could have diagnosed me the way he did.

I'm worried now regarding what may transpire.

Hoobs in reply to SeahawkUK

Even in the current climate if they thought it was anything sinister they would have had you in. Try not to worry and STOP googling lol.

SeahawkUK in reply to Hoobs

Lol. Thanks Hoobs. 🙂

Your doctor was seriously unhelpful. Hopefully you'll soon be able to have the necessary tests and at least know what you're dealing with, and start to get some proper support and treatment.

Cheers Hungry.

I agree that my GP has been sadly lacking with his help towards me so far. Hopefully I won"t have to wait too long.

Hi SeahawkUK , I hope you can try and relax and take care.

take heart that the cough had past . I’m so glad that I am with the forum and you are with a great lot of supportive friends

Thank you Sunflower.

Try not to worry Seahawk. As far as I’m aware it isn’t possible to see emphysema on an X-ray only a CT scan. I’m pleased your cough has gone and you’re smoke free now. I think your doctor may have worried you unnecessarily.

Hello Seahawk - some great advice above. I would just like to extend a very warm welcome to you (I personally found more information on this site about my emphysema than I was ever given by medical professionals 12years ago, who told me I had COPD, gave me an inhaler and sent me home). Good luck with everything going forward (just remember - this is not a death sentence).

Welcome SeahawkUK. To this welcoming friendly group. I was the same as you last June time. Diagnosed with copd and needing a pacemaker all in the same week. Pacemaker did not worry me. But copd certainly did. Just like you. We just have to keep exercising. Singing as well to keep those lungs functioning as well as possible. Take care. We are all in this together. Brian

Welcome Seahawk good to have you with us .Your Doctor seems to be lacking in dealing with you as quickly as he should have done having said that if it was serious they would get you in virus or no virus .We all stress when we here something like this allsorts must have gone through your mind .as advised keep away from Google unless your checking what a consultant tells you .I googled mine and it said I had possibly 3years left at most but it was cobblers you take care any worries get on here great bunch of invalids lol

Just to tell you Seahawk when I stopped smoking I coughed coughed and coughed had major respiratory problems for months the doctor at the hospital told me it was the lungs and respiratory airways repairing the damage smoking had done. The body starts to repair as soon as you stop apparently the hairs (cilia) in your airways start growing back this can take up to 8 weeks and it can irritate some people Take care xxx

Thanks for that Christina.

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