My asthma was flared up from June-September because of irritation from acid reflux. After surgery, I spent two entire months without asthma symptoms. It was a "miracle" for me.
At the beginning of December, I developed a cold that triggered my asthma. Since then, the extreme cold air has set in. During the last two days, I have woken up with "tightness" when I breathe and some coughing. I have used Albuterol first thing and have felt better after that. The thing that worries me is that even with using a second dose about 20-30 minutes before leaving home for work, the coughing and breathing difficulty is setting in immediately upon stepping foot outside. I had hoped that by using the Albuterol ahead of time along with a scarf or facemask, it would lessen the asthma symptoms. They don't really seem to be helping much. This is kind of scary for me, because last January I had an attack that needed emergency care with symptoms that started just like these. I never miss work and I have missed the last two days because of my fear of stepping outside again into the cold.
Current treatment: Advair 250/50 has been temporarily bumped up to 500/50 for the last couple weeks, Singulair and Albuterol. So far, the symptoms aren't severe enough to begin Prednisone, for which I have a standing prescription.
I just want to be able to get to and from my car and my home/office or grocery store without worrying I will end up with a severe asthma attack. Am I being unreasonable to be scared of stepping food outside right now? Should I just be "sucking it up" and sticking to my regular routine? After my emergency attack last winter, I started carrying an epi-pen for emergencies. I know that if I did have emergency, I could use the epi-pen and that there are 3 hospitals nearby, but that really isn't lessening my current concerns much. My goal is to keep it from getting to that point.
I did go to my PCP. He increased my Advair, per my asthma plan, and told me to come back if it got worse. I also have an appointment on January 6 for a Pulmonary Function Test and a follow-up with the Pulmonologist on January 8.
Any suggestions or reassurances would help. I just felt a need to talk today.
I don't know what to tell you. I jog in the cold though it does give me a little tickle (I do 2 puffs of albuterol befor going to jog). I don't not go out - I just try not to stay out unless I'm jogging....
Thanks for your responses. I've been through a lot recently trying to get my asthma under control. It was frustrating this week to have the cold air problems. I have the rest of the winter to get through. I guess I was lucky that we had a warmer than usual November and beginning of December this year. Sometimes I wonder if I should just look at moving to a warmer climate. I have family in Las Vegas. I wish I could just get a doctor's release to qualify me for FMLA during the winters. It's a shame too because I used to enjoy the winters out here. We get light, powdery snow and have little wind-chill. It's so much more enjoyable that what I had growing up in the mid-west.