British Lung Foundation
34,306 members41,689 posts wonder I didn't feel well and couldn't breathe

Hi all

You may have readbefore in my blogs that I have been having problems with my breathing.

Well things had got so bad over the last couple of weeks that I couldn't go on waiting for the tests I was due to have in a few weeks. [Sleep study & Lung tests].

I tried getting to see the G.P and when my husband rang on last friday, we couldn't get an appointment until 9th October !!!!!!

I was therefore left struggling and getting nowhere until last night, I couldn't go on any longer and was coughing and unable to catch my breath or take a breath was around 5am and so we contacted the surgery to get the emergency number to be told to ring 111.

We rang 111 and went through a series of questions to get an ambulance being sent to my home.....was asked to take a dissovable asprin, even though I didn't think I was have a heart attack and I shouldn't be taking asprin with methotrexate. So I waited for the ambulance, which arrived quickly and they stopped me from taking the asprin saying "we don't do that anymore anyway".

They tested heart rate, breathing etc and decided to take me into A&E [Accident and Emergency].

When I got there I was put on a nebuliser, had blood tests, xrays etc and found I had pheumonia. The doctor said he thought it may have a connection to the methotrexate as it can cause inflammation on the lungs. He also thought it was more of a problem at night because of the Apnea/Hypopnea.

Issued the appropriate antibiotics and suggestions of seeing my G.P which I said if I could of seen my G.P I wouldn't have been here.....I am afraid this is the sign of things to come.

Never mind...all's well that ends well...except for me that is.

I am going to bed...had enough


9 Replies

you sound just like I feel at the moment, totally frustrated with the caregivers and upset.


Hi Andrea so sorry you had to go through all this, its a pity there is not a walk in clinic by you, I use that each time the receptionist says there's no appointment for 3 weeks. The NHS Direct number is also very useful.

So glad you have now got the medicine your need.

Hope you are soon feeling better.


You are probably not going to believe it but my G.P is a walkin clinic and runs from 8 till 8 every day of the year.

Too many people arriving as they cannot get an appointment at their G.P's hence I couldn't get to see them !!!

This situation has gone really downhill in the last 6 months or more as before I had access to booking appointments and prescriptions online, telephone consultations and really good access to the G.P who knows my difficult case well.

Now I cannot access any of this and have to arrange my illnesses 2 weeks in advance, so I can book them in.

This is what I meant by a sign of things to come.

The NHS Direct 111 number was very helpful though, but I would have rather have managed to have seen my G.P and not used up an ambulance that someone else might have needed and spent over 5 hours in A&E.....because I couldn't see my G.P

Sorry I am on my soap box - must be a side effect of the meds ;)

Thanks Zoee


You'll be hyper if the doc gave you prednisolone as well as the antibiotics.


hope you soon feel a little better. I had a bad chest went to GP twice over 3 weeks asked for antibiotics he would not give them said it would be ok after another 2 days got a cancellation appointment seen a locum ,like you I had pneumonia sometimes I think we know more then the GP. Take care have plenty of bedrest with lots of fluids.


Does your local hospital have community respiratory nurses? Im very lucky that we do, I no longer have to ring my gp where my lungs are concerned, I have antibiotics on stand by at home but if I know Im going through an episode I cant manage I ring the respiratory nurse and she comes out to visit. Before that I was very lucky with my gp, if I couldnt get an appointment with him i used to ask to speak to him on the phone, because he knew my case well he would fit me in or prescribe the antibioitcs and leave at the reception for me


Thanks shell13

That sounds really interesting and I will speak to my G.P when I see her. I think once I am diagnosed properly, hopefully, the community nurse will fall into place.

I had already planned to talk about access to appointments and Telephone consults, because I could usually get her to ring me on that day. I was encouraged to use the telephone consults because I am on strong immune suppressants and disabled.

But as I said, it has just gone downhill over the last 6 months, because of the pressure coming from other non-registered patients arriving because they can't get an appointment with their just go to show that the new systems within the NHS are not working. The walking clinic originally, was mostly used by people that didn't have a G.P at all or for when other patients G.P's were closed [i.e lunchtime and late evening]....Now it is just a constant stream and the atmosphere is one of fire fighting.

I think the surgery can have control over the number of registered Patients bookable appointments but cannot control the number of walkin something has to give.

Unfortunately that is myself and other registered patients.

Thank you for your suggestion though, I will definately look into it



hi,new here ...ive been ill more than well since May when i went to hospital in agony ..they thought i was having a heart attack but sent me home saying i was all clear ..2 days late letter thru my door saying id got pneumonia ...since then ive had 3 courses of antibiotics and 4 courses of steroids and nebulising ..ive not been happy with my care as i think advice given to me by the nurse was confusing and poor ,since when i actually eventually get in to see my own doctor he agrees with me and has contradicted his own nurse over my medications , but yet now i have no confidence in this emergency with the nurse system so i am being referred to the chest clinic at hospital for further guidence thankfully


Thanks sheridan

I know what you mean, but I haven't got access to the nurse system as yet so just have to manage within the system.

I have been telling my consultants and my G.P for years now that I was having problems breathing. Originally it was more intermittant but now it is pretty consistant but variable.

I think the pneumonia was the last straw that broke the camels back. Being on immune suppressants means you are suseptable to these types of infections or it could be a side effect of the methotrexate.

Hopefully the letter from A&E will spell this out to try and get a formal diagnosis. I already have Sleep Hypopnea which was diagnosed in 2006 and left untreated. Plus the doctors didn't listen then when I said it wasn't just a sleep problem but also during the day.

I am glad you are being referred to the chest clinic and hope they can get to the bottom of it.

Like you I end up being my own doctor, which I can manage with most problems [I have many that have affected me neurologicly] but not breathing properly is another matter.

Good luck at your chest clinic



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