British Lung Foundation
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hi my name is colin im 38

i have had a good read of the posts on the site and thought it was time to tell my story .

2 years ago i was told to yous bleach at a very high level for 1hr 30 mins this caused me to struggle to breath . I was then exposed 6 more times over the space of a year and a half . This has made it a lot worse it now afects the skin on my face and my lungs . i have been reacting with more and more stuff the latest being the grill when cooking and boxes of soap powder but all strong smells will do it for me . my work has deemed me unfit for job and i finish up on the 12 june . not happy about it who wouldnt . i now life will go on but its hard when i have held that job for 15 years . And dont now what line of work would be the best for me at this time . but will do any job if it comes to it .

must admit my wife and kids are really supportive

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yes it was at work Stitch i was really fit at the time i was team leader for me and my freinds doing munros over 3000 feet and hiting the gym really hard was doing 50 mins on the cross trainer 135 kg on leg press . to then stugling to walk up the road to work big change . never smoked . i realy found it hard to adjust to this but slowly im coming to terms with it . iv been told my body is ultra hipper sensitive to it now . cant even go in a room were it has been used had a flair up in the KFC one day only wanted to treat the family . cant even watch the kids at the pool .

Hi Colind,

Sorry to here that you are having such terrible problems.

If this occoured in the course of your work, were you not supplied with protective equipment ie: masks, gloves and eye protection? were there any COSH risk assessments in place?

I hope you have been refered to a consultant.

Best wishes


hi jo was given gloves and eye protection but i asked for a respirator was only given a M3 paper mask no good for the job i had to do . there was COSH done and in place . we normally only yous 1 tab to 1 litter of water . but had to yous 10 tabs to 1 litter of water . i had to yous 3 litters of water and 30 tabs as iv said really high dose . but i have payed a high price for that . do have a consultant but as i work for the nhs not getting much joy from him .

Hi Colind

I would speak to your HR & Union regarding weather safe working with chemicals was adequate It may also be worth investigating Heath & Safety executive guidelines. It would appear that your condition was caused by work practice & you may be entitled to compensation.

Working for the nhs should have no bearing on your treatment from your consultant.

wishing you all the very best

Jo :-)

hi jo the Union and HR have been involved as they tried to redeploy me but as im reacting to one of the main cleaning products was not successful . Occ Health say i need a chemical free environment :( my consultant works for the same hospital feel it would have been better if it was a different hospital

I can understand that you may feel happier with a consultant from another hospital Could you ask for a transfer to a differen consultant at anothe hospital? I'm glad you have had union, HR & Occ Health involved but personnally (although I do not normally advocate ' claim culture' ) I do think you may have a case. Please seek advice from the BLF helpline. They are relly helpful.

Wishing you all the best

Jo :-)

Hi Colin,

So sorry for this, have you looked into accident compensation, injury at work, I know its not really any compensation for a such a life changing situation but if you can get something it may help make things easy for you.

Avoid everything that may irritate the lungs from now on, any kind of smoke will do it along with all the usual, household cleaners, try to go natural wherever there is a problem with the cleaners. You may be able to tolerate the anti bac wet wipes for kitchen, bathroom surfaces etc. Highly perfume stuff is a no no for most of us too.

Look after your lungs.

Auntymary x

cant yous the anti bac wet wipes :( but have found the ecover for the toilet wife cleans it but at the mo im ok with it . how do yous deal with up the town and that . i find it the hardest as everyone wants to bleach everything till the cows come home . if it does not smell of bleach you haven't cleaned it ??


I would suggest that you talk to your union, the helpline or the CAB as they can advise you what to do. Do you have a diary of what happened or someone who can confirm about how much bleach you were advised to use?

Take care and please at least call the helpline.


hi all im def looked into accident compensation, injury at work . im not that type of person but this has affected me so much so fast .

i just need it to base line so i now thats it but i dont think thats going to happen any time soon keep finding new things .

im glad iv got all yous to help me and to talk to . i now it sounds bad but my friends just dont get how bad it is for us all .

Hi Colin

Referring to your query on the other BLF board....

"hi tru

can i ask a question i had x rays done just will that show any damage or dose it have to be a ct scan"

The Xray will show some damage but it won't give enough information to the extent of damage to your lungs, from Xray its not always possible to diagnose what lung condition you actually have.

It may be you haven't yet got as far as the CT scan stage. I would ask your doc for referral to a respiratory consultant if you are not yet under one. If you are already seeing one, perhaps when you get the results of the Xray, the CT scan will be next.

All the evidence you accumulate from hospital and doc letters of appointments. keep those as evidence for any claim you may make.

Before I was properly diagnosed I had many different xrays and scans. The Xray was the first of many, Xray showed I had a shadow on the lung and a lung infection. Initially it was suspected I had cancer but after thorough examination through scans, bloods, cardiac and I don't know how many other tests, it was only when I had the CT scan that it was revealed I had emphysema and thus diagnosed with that. I was referred to respiratory consultant after xray checks and because my lung infection was not clearing, ability to walk and breathe was then a serious problem. I only had ventolin until I was properly diagnosed - 10 down the line after all the tests!!!

I am so glad your wife and kids are a good support for you.

Take care and let us know when you get your results.


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