Hi, just an introduction

My name is Richard and I was diagnosed with COPD 8 years ago. I'm on ambulatory oxygen, plus a variety of tablets, nebulisers and inhalers. I've just had lung function tests, a slight improvement up to 27%, so I'm no longer borderline transplant list. I do have problems with anxiety and panic attacks, and these then make the shortness of breath worse. Apart from medication CBT counselling is helpful. I have found that I tend to use the same routes, shops etc, a sort of comfort zone!

Take care.

8 Replies

oldestnewest
  • Hi Richard

    I know what you mean about using the same shops etc although I hadn't consciously realised it until reading your words. I think its to do with feeling safer that way, no 'surprises' or difficult terrain to negotiate. Also the staff at my regular supermarket all recognise me and don't even notice the cannula any more. I feel 'at home ' there.

    Congratulations on steering clear of the transplant list :) I wouldn't fancy one myself. I have read of people with fev1's in the low twenties and teens carrying on like that for 15 or twenty years - some of them still doing things like clearing snow off their roof, kayaking etc. so there is plenty to stay positive about :)

  • Welcome Richard

    Congratulations on the improvement in your lung function, you are heading in the right direction to avoid transplant, and getting the help you need through counselling for the anxiety attacks you are experiencing. Its good news.

    Do you also apply some of the breathing techniques that can be used both for the anxiety attacks and CoPD to help relax you and calm your breathing? If you are not currently using any of these perhaps ask your GP for a referral to the physio to help you with this, or check in with a respiratory nurse, either way you will be sure of getting professional instruction regarding these breathing techniques.

    Congratulations on your achievements Richard, keep up the good work.

    Zoe

  • Thank Zoe, I do use breathing techniques to control my breathing and relax. One problem is to tense the shoulders, but I cannot fully relax them due to damaged nerves in my right shoulder and arm, so that shoulder is normally tensed up. The damage was caused by an infection so cannot be 'fixed'. The irony of that was it happened when I had a pneumothorax and chest infection! I'm trying to break the habit of staying within my 'comfort zone' as it does become very restrictive socially.

  • So sorry to hear about the shoulder Richard. I think you are doing great managing your anxiety, just take it gradually when you begin breaking your comfort zone. I feel sure you will achieve all that you want and can feel good about doing it. Maybe just start, with a few paces in a new route at a time, then turn back into safe zone. Just keep doing that until you get more confidence and more adventurous :-) You will do well, I feel sure.

    Wishing you a great day.

    Zoe

  • Many thanks Zoe. I intend to get out and about with my camera during summer/autumn with destinations on bus routes. I will be fully laden with portable oxygen, portable nebuliser and camera! Also, mobile phone just in case. With the CBT, I'm currently doing an open learning diploma in it, whether I will be able to find employment as a CBT counsellor is doubtful, but I can only try.

    Best wishes and take care.

  • It all sounds great Richard, from what you are saying you will do well at everything you put your mind to. I think even if you don't achieve employment as a counsellor you will get much out of it during the training. Its just great you are making the moves to help yourself enjoy life.

    Am looking forward to seeing some of your photos :-) its always great to get out and about.

    Thank you for the good wishes and the same to you Richard.

  • nice one richard, get some pictures up

    pussy

    x

  • Hi, I will try my best to get some reasonable photos when I can. Landscapes and hopefully wildlife. Take care.

You may also like...