still got this chest infection and it... - British Lung Foun...

British Lung Foundation
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still got this chest infection and it is scaring me to death


Hello again.

Well 4 weeks on and now on second course of amoxillin (500mg 3x daily) and it's just the same as it was before, 3 days into the antibiotic course and I begin to start feeling a bit better, then on day four it's back to the start again. I might as well take 3 smarties a day for all the good this amoxillin is doing.

My problem is (it doesn't help at all) I have severer treatment resistand depression, GAD and OCD, plus I'm a raging hypochondriac (that's down to my ocd as it is health related) And now that my chest infection hasn't gone I'm convinced myself it's lung cancer.

I quit smoking 6 years ago but smoked for nearly 45 years quite heavilly, and I know that this can bring on lung cancer, even though youhave quit.

My symptoms are usual of a chest infection, or at least I think they are.

When I get out of bed in the morning it takes me about an hour to cough up all the gunk that has accumaleted on my chest overnight, it is like a watery substance, not green or yellow. when all that is over I don't feel too bad for the rest of the day, although if I push myself a bit to far I do get a little more breathless than usual. I have started taking my ventolin, I've been perscribed this for the past 5 years but have had no need to take it as I don't usually get breathless, well not to the extent that I need the ventolin anyway.

Is this normal for us moderate copd'ers to get these type of infections that simply refuse to go away.

I am beginning to make myself ill again through worry, and I'm too scared to go to the doctors again in case he sends me for x-rays as I'm terrified they might find something.

To be honest, if it wasn't for the effect my death would have on my grown up children and wife I think I would end it all, as I am sick to death of living in terror.

sorry to sound like a wimp, but I just can't help it

thank's for listening


14 Replies

Vangellis, you need to go back to the GP, scary as it is, and tell him/her the antibios are not working. The infection will not get better until you get the right treatment. Go get 'em! ;)

Hello Vangellis

Firstly you do not sound like a wimp - no way. You have a lot to cope with, especially if your ocd is health related. That said I think you are getting ahead of yourself and thinking the worst. I really and truly don't feel you need to be afraid of going to the docs. It sounds as though the bug causing your infection is not sensitive to Amoxil. I'm not a doc of course, but from experience that is how I see it. It sounds like your bugs need a different antibiotic. The fact the gunk is not coloured in one way is good but it would be helpful to be able to get a sample. I don't have copd Vangellis I have bronchiectasis, but I would guess we both get persistent infections. I've had a very long run of one particular bug which proved difficult to evict, but touch wood this new antibiotic has done the trick for now.

Do you mind me asking Vangellis do you see a psychologist at all for either cognitive behaviour therapy or talking therapy. It saddens me to think of you living in terror. You know many of your fears are perceived and not actual, but that doesn't make it any less difficult for you to cope with and I acknowledge your fear.

Please don't sit worrying and keeping your fears to yourself - you can talk anytime and you might find talking to BLF really helpful.

Wishing you well

Love C xxx

Well said, so right cofdrop,you've said it all so succinctly,I am terrible rambler,but you've explained so well what I was trying to express, anxiety can be so horrible and there are so many different ways of treating it.

Agree with the above i have been like you with need a different antibiotic my Doc always starts me of with amoxicilen when i go back and say its not clearing i need a different one then i get one it then ussualy clears last year i had 9 infections not good so hope you get back to Doc take care.

It's not wimpish to be worried about the future Vangellis :) I think we all do that to some extent. What's worrying though is that it plays such a huge part in your thinking. Don't be afraid to express your concerns to your gp, that's what they are they for, they are paid very handsomely to help and advise us !

If you have a chest infection your GP should send a sample of your sputum to the hospital to be tested and the hospital will advise on which anti-biotic will be most effective in treating your infection. I don't think you are a wimp at all. It is normal to be anxious when you have an illness and God knows, COPD is an awful illness to have. I take Lorazepam for anxiety as prescribed by my Respiratory Consultant and although I was reluctant to take them at first, they are a great help to me. Take care and keep us posted. x

i seem to be in the same situation as youare. i too have had a chest infection for four weeks. finished my last antibiotic {my third course} today. i still feel more tired than usual and seem to get more breathless than doctor sent off another sputum test on friday. will get result next week. beginning to get really worried as i am off on holiday to lanzarote on 14th march. dont know too much about copd as only diagnosed in sept last year. i dont know how i would have coped without everyone on this site.i too am a woorier like you Vangellis. good luck hope your chest infection clears up soon.

Hello Vangellis,I know exactly how you feel,ive had a chest infection for 4 weeks,4 lots antis 2 lots amoxilin & 2 lots klaricid plus 2 lots steroids,im not too bad during the day but at night i rattle like a snake not so much as wheeze,so im up all night coughing trying to clear it,its does clear for about 2mins but then it comes back,ive been to the doctors once a week for a month and she examined me twice and the other 2 times just gave me a script,the only thing she kept saying was for me to go for chest x ray which of course is quite worrying,i want the right treatment first not pictures,ive had copd for about 10yrs now and stopped smoking nearly 2yrs ago im wondering are we getting immune from the flu jab or have they added this new infection to it and some of us are not strong enough to fight it off and thats why its lasting so long,yes it is worrying,a month is a long time and really should have cleared up before now.if only us ex smokers knew what damage they would cause,if i only had 1 wish then of course it would have been never to have started but of course we dont get wishes so just have to reflect on our mistakes.grrrrr, those horrible poison sticks,please exuse me anyone looking in,im just a bit worried that its not clearing and its nice to be able to talk to somone about it,i certainly cant talk to my doctor about it.hope your infection goes very soon.



Hello Vangellis, You are not a wimp - it is very worrying. My husband has never been a hypochondriac (always been me until the COPD!) but he is always worried now especially when he gets an infection that doesn't go. His worry at the moment is the dreadful headaches but he forgets he has always had dreadful headaches! Go back to the doctor after this course of antibiotics and ask his advise, ask for a referral for pulmonary rehab. The information they will be able to give will take away the fear and give you some control. It really helped my husband - though he didn't want to go. My husband was also extremely scared about xrays - only had one and the stress was incredible. Perhaps the BLF helpline could help you and give advise. Take care and be kind to yourself. TAD xx


Thank you everyone for taking the time to post replies, I really appreciate it.

Well, I have plucked up the courage to go back and see my GP, I have an appointment tomorrow at 14:45pm.

Funny though, as I feel quite a bit better today.



How did you get on at the doctors?

Hi grannybell

Well, she examined my chest and said the infection had gone, and my lungs sound as clear as a bell,

No mention at all about hospitals or x-rays.

Which pleased me no end.

She said it is the congestion from my nose running down onto my chest during the night that is causing me to cough up phlem in the mornings, so she put me on a steroid nasal spray called Beconase.

Said it should clear it all up in about 6 days.

So I feel much relieved I must say

Thank you very much for asking.

best wishes


Glad to hear it. Hope you're feeling better soon. x

I understand how easy it is to get into a state over hospital tests,and after 30 years of being a patient I think I've experienced every emotion,from complete fear to no longer caring as I had become so depressed at one stage. Now I've found that the more relaxed I can try to be,it's just so much better all round. I am a naturally anxious person but have learned that being overly worried can make things seem so much worse but to come to this epiphany I needed help and it took a long time, I railed against my health problems for so long,wondering why me? But now I've accepted I have them and thinking positively helps,but you need to speak to your GP/consultant about your fears so you can get help to deal with your anxiety,believe me please,the counseling that I received helped ,and pulmonary rehab is wonderful,and these anxieties that we naturally feel are addressed there.

I am so sure you are not alone,I spent a lot of years just feeling frightened,but being more proactive in my treatments has helped too,there isn't a majic wand but these feelings can be helped ,and I think I might be right in saying that clearing your lungs of any mucus is a good thing,and that you can get it coughed up is very good,keep it up,it's really good to get rid of it, . Please let your GP know how anxious you're feeling,you are not alone and I'm sure your GP will tell you this.

I'm wishing you the best and I hope you get the help you need to deal with your anxiety,just wanted you to know a lot of us feel or have felt the same way.

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