I recently went to the doctor for an arm movement problem and we decided to order a chest X-Ray because of my past 20 years of pretty heavy smoking, have since quit. The report from the clinic read "hyper ariation (sp?) consistent with mild chronic obstructive pulomnary disease." Is this possibly a wrong diagnosis? I do not have any wheezing or shortness of breath. Is this enough of a test to determine an Emphysema diagnosis. I`m rather scared, am 48 years old. Thank you.
I know it may be hard to do but try not to worry too much until you have a more definite diagnosis. You really need to see a Pulmonary specialist who will order a heap of tests to confirm or rule out that diagnosis. They will probably order respiratory function tests , blood work and scans. Not everything that is reported from x-ray is always a firm diagnosis. Maybe request a High Resolution CT scan from your doctor and certainly a referral to a specialist who can help you find out more. It is very scary but if it is any consolation I was told I had cancer based on x-ray and scan results and they were wrong. This has happened to me 3 times.
Just keep smiling and find the right doctor to help you as soon as you can to help set your mind at rest or at least so you will know what you are up against.
Thank you very much. That is just not how I want to go, on an oxygen tank. BUT my doctor, based on that scan, confirmed saying "oh, you already have emphysema" based on that X-Ray result. Should they be using that sort of definite language in your opinion? Her English isn`t is sure. She is an immigrant from Asia.
The doctor can make assumptions based on the x-ray but that doesn't mean it is true. They are not fully qualified to interpret the results like a radiographer is. What did the actual report from the x-ray centre say? Even if that report confirms what she told you then you still will need to have more tests and see a specialist before they can be sure. You will definitely have to have lung function testing such as spirometry.
Look on the bright side. You gave up smoking which is a big thing to do, so at the least, even if you do have emphysema then you have done the best thing to stop any more damage. You will have stopped any more damage from occurring and may even stop the disease progressing. Based on the fact that you are not showing any of the typical symptoms of emphysema then you have obviously caught things early if you have it at all.
Just book in to see a specialist and see what they have to say. Try and focus on the good that you have done rather than beat yourself up over what has already happened. (Hard to do I know) Focus yourself on staying healthy and fit and that in itself will make a huge difference down the track.
Frannie thank you. To answer your question, here is the exact language from the report written by the X-Ray center. It is all my doctor went on. It says, "hyper ariation (sp?) consistent with mild chronic obstructive pulimary disease." I copied it down from the nurse that gave me the quote over the telephone. I do have some shortness of breath occasionally and intermittant chest tightness but it`s uncommon and I really think it relates to the major anxiety disorder I developed in 2003 after discontiuning a tranquilizer drug. I think what they are saying is that my lungs are holding a bit too much air... they aren`t claiming to have seen any damage. Also I did my own primitive test. I can blow piles of pills, situated about a foot away, off the table, one after the other with no problem. Thanks.
P.S. I quit smoking 6 months but went back for two weeks because the dipping snuff I switched was inflaming my gums. I`m back on the mouth tobacco, a milder variety, and will face nicotine withdrawal later. It is certain I will never inhale smoke again.
I asked a friend who is a Pulmonary Specialist what she could tell me to tell you. Here goes :- (THIS IS NOT TO TAKE PLACE OF A PROFESSIONAL DIAGNOSIS THOUGH AND YOU STILL NEED TO SEE A SPECIALIST YOURSELF)She said that it is very possible that the diagnosis is correct but considering your symptoms (and other tests you tried yourself), then she said that you have done the right thing giving up smoking and that even if it is emphysema then you could possibly be one of those where the disease doesn't progress or progresses very slowly. If you do all the right things as far as health (no smoking, healthy weight, excercise etc) then you will stand a good chance of remaining relatively healthy for a long time.
She did say that you would most definitely need more testing from the appropriate specialist to find out the best plan for you and a proper diagnosis.
Thank you very much for taking the time to do that for me and you bring some hope. It is good to see your friend using guarded language, "very possible," etc. I`m only left with one question: Why would someone tell me I have Emphysema based on an X-Ray that said my lungs were slightly over-inflated? Is Emphysema mutally exclusive to all other causes for that? If not, why tell me I definitely have it? I filled my lungs and held my breath during the X-Ray. I need this like I need a hole in the head. My skin has been burning, vision bright and off, dizzy, etc. for over 3 years as a result of having taken bad sleep medicine. Thanks for any input as I lack understanding.