75y/o grandad and COPD.

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Good evening all. I don’t have COPD but my grandfather is in the process of being diagnosed. He’s 75 and has had a prolonged cough for 6 years now. 4 years ago he was told it was it was an allergic reaction to his two cats and his pet budgie. Obviously I did question this however nothing came of it. 3 months ago he came to my house coughing up blood and his lips were blue (I quickly dialled 999 as he has a heart condition (Angina) and had a heart attack years ago). They took him into A&E and kept him overnight - he had a chest infection, but they still knew it wasn’t 100% normal, so referred him back to a Thoracic consultant. 8 weeks ago he had his CT scan and just over a week ago he had his consultant appointment. He had a breathing test, and was examined thoroughly by 3 consultants. All of which constantly mentioned COPD and are quite certain however they didn’t diagnose there and then, they need to speak to a panel of thoracic consultants to make sure they are correct in their findings. They were extremely concerned about his lung function (currently 25%) - 4 years ago it was 40% but we weren’t told about this until last week at his appointment. The scarring on his lungs have covered 75% and therefore only 25% is functioning. I’m unsure about COPD, I’ve tried to do my research and look up as much as I can. I’m a first responder and currently returning to study to be a paramedic but this is a mystery to me! I’m hoping someone can shed some light for me. I did research a little bit as I said before so I know what COPD is etc but I don’t understand it all, not like these doctors and you, the people who live with it day in day out. I’m scared, my grandad raised my sister and I and with our grandmother who passed away 4 years ago, so yes, I’m petrified. I read online that 30% lung function and under is end stage. This seems really daunting to me! Also he hasn’t been prescribed anything yet.. we’re due back to see his consultant in the next 8-12 weeks. We have his initial oxygen assessment with the respiratory nurse next week as well, and he has also been referred for Pulmonary Rehab too. Thank you all so much for reading, any advice and knowledge welcome and last but not least, I hope you have a wonderful day/night wherever in the world you are. smile

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  • Posted

    Hello Zibbidy,

    I have COPD and I'm still learning about it myself. My test show that working with only 30% capacity, yet because my blood oxygen reading is not low enough, I don't qualify for oxygen. Britain/America, I believe that we are subject to what the system allows. Dr's.are forced to work within the guidelines/restrictions or risk being  a rogue. They can prescribe oxygen, but will tell you that you will have to pay 100% of the cost as the system will not cover it.

    Your Grandfather is lucky that you care enough to show this much concern for him. He may not ask, but I can tell you he is most grateful for help with his laundry, housekeeping, transportation to Dr appointments and food supply trips. He may not require more than a few hours a week, but any help is ever so much a blessing.

    Keep learning. Ask Questions. Come back and tell us of your experiences, please.

    All the best to you and your Grandfather. . 

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  • Posted

    Hi Zibbidy

    Your granddad may have more than one lung disease going on. I hate to say it but if so many specialists are debating, not a soul here can offer up anything except wild guesses. Be prepared to be told that the bird must go. They may say ditto on the cats especially if there's a litter box in the house. If there's not a litter box, there are steps you can take that will resolve most dander issues.

    Be prepared, tho. Docs may say that the animals no longer matter, or Granddad may say that life isn't worth it without them. Whatever you do, don't remove them against his will as it might break his heart. If your grandmother was alive when any or all animals were acquired, giving them up will feel to him as if his beloved wife died all over again.

    Get him out of the house for a day & get the entire place scoured with non-offending (lungs) cleaners. Do the pillows drapes carpets bed coverings. I'm not saying he's not a great cleaner, just that dander & dust mites may've taken hold since his wife passed.

    My significant other lived many years at 24% lung function, tho DXed at a younger age. It was probably 6 years afterward before he was put on O2, and tgem ONLY because he was high stroke risk. He lived 7 more years after going on oxygen, then passed a few months shy of 72, from hardened arteries!

    I have COPD & bronchiectasis.

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  • Posted

    I am 85 and was diagnosed 5 years ago...but had not needed or requested oxygen until 2 months ago. I live in the states and the pulmonary doctor takes biopsy runs tests to determine for sure. Sounds like he should be on oxygen. So sorry your grandfather is in such difficulty. It is so hard for him and you. You should demand some treatment now...I know he suffers. I send prayers and comfort to you and your grand dad, Keep your spirits up..be of good courage. 
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  • Posted

    If you go to the British Lung Foundation website there is a massive amount of information for self education purposes. BLF also have a helpline you could ask for an information pack to be sent.   Also if you can attend the PR course with your grandfather, you will learn a lot on that course.  You can also check out you tube and just search COPD education.  The British Thoracic website is also very informative about COPD treatment etc.  The main things to learn (which the PR course covers) is how to keep well and improve lung function and slow down progress.

    You might also want to read the pinned post called Tips + know the difference,

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