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Old 02-14-2012, 04:41 AM   #1
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to know more about asthma

Hello,

I have diagnosed with asthma accompanied by GERD about 2 years ago. I'm living in a country other than my origin and hard to communicate with doctors. So as I have not much experience on living with Asthma, I just wanted to ask some questions and would be happy to hear your answers;

1 - I'm having bronchitis and/or throat infections few times a year. Can Asthma cause having respiratory infections this often?

2 - Is asthma inflammation always present in lungs in some degree and get worse by encountering triggers? I feel like I have it present always.

3 - I'm confused with using my rescue inhaler. I have Ventolin. Is an inhaler a drug which we use daily? Some doctor told me to use it when I exercise, some other said use four times daily, some other said only when I need it and pharmacist also said to use it daily.

4 - I was also given a symbicort turbuhaler which I'm taking once daily in the morning. I don't seem to be having any relief from it as i have it from rescue inhaler. Is this normal?

5 - Can asthma cause fatigue? When I climb stairs, even one floor up, I get tightness in chest, increased heart beat and a little dizziness.


Thank you

 
Old 02-14-2012, 06:22 AM   #2
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Re: to know more about asthma

1) The bronchitis could be exacerbated by both asthma and the GERD. The throat issue could also be exacerbated by the GERD but both are generally due to being exposed to a baterial infection.

2) Yes, the asthma is always present but taking proper meds should alleviate any noticable symptoms.

3) Ventolin is a rescue inhaler and should be taken only as a) a premedication for cardio activity - 2 puffs, 60 seconds apart, 15-20 minutes before cardio, or b) as a rescue for an attack - when you feel an attack coming on (whatever your particular feeling might be) then use the ventolin - one of two puffs. People whose asthma is not under control need it more frequently but if yours is under control then using it more than once a month should be rare.

4) This is your daily steroid preventive med. If you are to take only one puff, then it should be in the evening, not in the morning. Switch and see if it helps. If not, then you may need it more than once per day. And since you are having problems, I'd say you need to be taking it more often but only a doctor can tell you that.

5) Yes, this is additional evidence that your asthma is not under control. You could premedicate with the ventolin before goingup stairs if you want.

Hope you get back to a country where you don't have a language barrier and can get better help.

 
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Old 02-14-2012, 05:31 PM   #3
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Re: to know more about asthma

Titchou gave you good advice. I just want to add a few things:

In answer to #4, Symbicort works slowly, but the rescue inhaler works right away. So you take the Symbicort every day to keep your asthma from acting up, and the rescue inhaler when it gets bad.

Are you treating your GERD? That could make a big difference.

Definitely, tell your doctor that your asthma is not under control, and ask what else you can do.

 
Old 02-15-2012, 02:25 AM   #4
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Re: to know more about asthma

Thank you both for your replies. It made me realize how little I know about my situation. My GERD is now almost under control First I got rid of Helicobacter pylori infection and now using anti acid medicines.

Let me ask you few more about astma;

1 - So I understand that even I'm not having any symptoms and breathing fine, I should take rescue inhaler before exercising right?

2 - Are we trying to keep use of rescue inhaler at minimum? Is there any danger over dosing it or using it unnecessarily?

3 - Getting Asthma under control means using an inhaler like turbuhaler daily right? Is there any other way or medicine to have it under control?


Thanks again.

 
Old 02-15-2012, 03:57 AM   #5
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Re: to know more about asthma

1) Yes, I jog and wouldn't be able to do it if I didn't.

2) Yes, it is an "upper" and can raise your blood pressure and cause other issue if over used.

3) Well, the only non steroidal one is a pill called singulair but it doesn't work for everyone. Having asthma means you'll be on meds all your life.

Do a search here for "asthma action plan" by Mountain Reader. Great information!

 
Old 02-15-2012, 06:53 AM   #6
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Re: to know more about asthma

Ok. Understood all. Thank you very much.

 
Old 02-17-2012, 10:36 AM   #7
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Re: to know more about asthma

I posted to a few threads so sorry, if you have read about them in other threads....

How do we get tested for GERD? When i saw the last allergist, she put me on a 2-week trial inhaler as she is trying to confirm that i might have VCD -vocal cord dysf instead of exericse induced asthma. After using the inhaler, i tried to do stair climbing and uphill walking (which is my trigger to get heavy heartbeats which take at least 5-8 min to "calm down and back to normal heart beat). I normally need to stop 2-3x times instead of walking continuously. However, after 2 days' trial, i still stop 2x and the heartbeat isn't 100% minimized. how much "relief" is this inhaler going to do if we have asthma? From 1-10, after using an inhaler, if we do have asthma, how much symptoms shd we still have, if any? AFter these 2 week trail, I'll need to report back to her and then she wants me to see an ENT to test for VCD.

She also says i have GERD. She says most sleep apnea patients have them. Well, how do we get tested for this?

Thanks. Sorry if I'm asking questions others have already asked. I'm new to these "potential diagnosis" and trying to understand all this...

 
Old 02-17-2012, 01:27 PM   #8
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Re: to know more about asthma

What inhaler did she give you? Without knowing the med, we can't say much. However, if it is a daily med like Flovent, Advair, etc, it won't help you doing cardio. Only if it is a rescue inhaler like ProAir HFA or Ventolin will it help and you have to premedicate properly

 
Old 02-20-2012, 02:30 PM   #9
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Re: to know more about asthma

@Titchou--it's a sample for "symbicort". Today i went for a short swim to test out if the inhaler's helping. I only swam for 20 minutes or so b/c I get physically tired but winded and labored breathing easily. Well....the inhaler didn't seem to help b/c i get the same symptoms inhaling than when i don't use it. Is this normal? Does this mean I might not have asthma and that we'll have to continue probing...?

 
Old 02-20-2012, 04:34 PM   #10
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Re: to know more about asthma

That's a daily med. It won't help you if you only use it before cardio. You need albuterol - a rescue inhaler - for that.

 
Old 02-20-2012, 05:19 PM   #11
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Re: to know more about asthma

So why did the allergist want me to use it for 2 wks and to "test it" ?! She says if i still have symptoms, t hen i might not have exercise induced asthma.....

 
Old 02-20-2012, 06:04 PM   #12
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Re: to know more about asthma

I have no clue. The daily med should help over time but not this soon. And even if it's regular asthma or EIA, you still need to premedicate before cardio. I have regular asthma and I have to or I can't jog more than one block. I'd be asking the doctor and if I didn't get a satisfactory answer, I'd go to a pulmonologist.

 
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