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Old 11-06-2009, 02:39 PM   #1
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After everything I still have a problem breathing

My breathing problems started in 12/2007 when I was hustling to catch a train. My throat and chest tightened and my chest hurt. Since then I have had a simple breathing test. Result: no difference before or after using Proventil (based on that, I quit using it). I have had numerous blood tests which indicate an underlying autoimmune problem and my hemoglobin, which should be at least 12 has dropped to 10.9. I have had an echocardiogram - no problem. I have had a chemical stress test - no problem. I have had a heart cath - no problem. I have had a pulmonary function test - no problem except for what the pulmonologist considered slight restrictions in the small airways FVC(L) was 81%, FEF 75% was 51%, FEF 25-75% was 61%. I have had a cardiopulmonary exercise test - no problem. However, in preparation to the CPET, I was given another breath test which showed further restriction in the small airways. The tech then administered two puffs of Ventolin and another breath test which showed my small airways opened up 25% to 30%. After finishing the CPET with no problem I was advised to return to my inhaler 4 times a day. I got my Proventil out and used it the following day with absolutely no results. When I learned that what did work was Ventolin, I asked my doc to prescribe that, which he did. No breathing problems for that week. This is the second week for my use of Ventolin (I am using it every 4 to 5 hours) and I am once again returning to the tight painful chest and my throat closing up. So far, it is not near what it was but still uncomfortable. No doctor so far has seemed particularly concerned but I am getting very frustrated. I have the problem when I'm not being tested but can't get any test to show the problem to the degree that I am experiencing it. Any suggestions?

 
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Old 11-06-2009, 03:36 PM   #2
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Re: After everything I still have a problem breathing

Has anyone mentioned acid reflux? It can mimic asthma and does not respond to the dialator meds. And did they not give you a daily med for asthma?

 
Old 11-06-2009, 03:42 PM   #3
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Re: After everything I still have a problem breathing

No one has mentioned acide reflux, however, I am taking Zantak 75 along with my Etodolac for my arthritis. The Ventolin did work wonderfully well for one week but as this week as advanced so have the breathing problems again. The only daily med I have is Ventolin which I use every 4 to 5 hours with decreasing efficiency.

I still have Advair from the first time Proventil was prescribed. Should I be using that?

 
Old 11-07-2009, 05:17 AM   #4
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Re: After everything I still have a problem breathing

Yes, you should be! Advair is the daily med. No wonder the ventolin isn't working. Rescue meds can't work on their own. The daily med, Advair-singulair-flovent-whatever, work to prevent attacks and rescue inhalers work to stop an attack. Unless they told you to stop taking the Advair, I can assure you they meant for you to continue it. As the Advair begins to work you should be able to reduce your use of the Ventolin and eventually discontinue regular use of it. I haven't needed my rescue inhaler in over two years,except that I have to premedicate before jogging. So I go thru 3 or more a year because I jog a lot. The general idea is to get your asthma under control to the point that you can use the minimum dose of the daily med and rarely ever use the rescue one. You should have a written plan from your pumonologist on how to medicate under various situations and prescriptions sufficient for 6 -8 months minimum. If you don't have that, ASK!

Good luck.

Last edited by Titchou; 11-07-2009 at 06:01 AM. Reason: add info

 
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