Diagnosed with Bronchiectasis

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I am an 18 year old male, i have been diagnosed with mild bronchiectasis.The doctor told me not to worry. He gave me a treatment consisting in some sort of immune system boosters.I am really worried that i will have a shorter life expectancy and that i will not be able to pursue my goals in life. Does anyone have bronchiectasis? If so can you tell me about your experience with it, i am very scared.

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  • Posted

    Hi there I was diagnosed with it about two years ago, it has taken me that long to realise you can be in control not the other way around, yes I have my bad days being very tired not feeling 100%. Has your respitory doctor told you how to do breathing exercises to clear your lungs, this is a great as it helps to keep infections at bay. Try not to worry and ask questions of your GP if you need to.

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    • Posted

      Thank you for the reply! I will ask my doctor about breathing exercises but he said that my bronchiectasis is pretty mild and nothing to worry about. He told me i have a bad immune system and we need to work on that. Other than that he told me to keep exercising and never smoke. I am still pretty scared because i want to go professional in a sport and i don't know if i can do that anymore...

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    • Posted

      Try not to be scared, eat well, live healthy and carry on with your plans, why miss out when with the right treatment and advice you can. Your body will let you know if it's too much, and as you said it's mild as is mine, you have to live a healthy lifestyle to prevent it getting worse. I was told exercise is good. What kind of sport are you doing?

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    • Posted

      I am really into cycling and i go to the gym quite often. I swim a bit as well. I just love sports and i really like to keep active.

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    • Posted

      That's great I was advice to go swimming and I do occasionally and feel so much better. You're on the right path by the sounds of it.

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  • Posted

    Hello ! I can fully understand your fears and concerns . i was diagnosed with it 4 years ago , having had pneumonia . Until then , i knew nothing of it . i did have a chesty cough from time to time , but that was all .

    The secret to managing it , is keeping your chest clear , don't let the phlegm build up and sit there , as thats a breeding ground for infection.

    Get an ACAPELA device from your respiratory team , they make clearing your chest quick and easy . I've been fortunate in not having any chest infections since .

    i do exercise , drink loads of water and occasionally take CARBOCOSTINE tablets to thin the mucous .

    As i understand it , tubes in Bronchiectasis patients ate wider , making it harder to expel mucous , so keeping your chest clear is vital .

    Obviously , i don't know how you were diagnosed , but , at least you can manage it . Personally , i dont suffer fatigue , shortness of breath etc like some mention , maybe , i'm just lucky .

    Like you , i was told it was a mild case , another consultant told me it was ' average ' and a 3 rd said very mild ! So , don't put your life on hold , carry on as normal , keep your chest clear , if you smoke , quit !

    You will be fine !

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    • Posted

      I will get an Acapella device, thanks for the advice. Do you think i can have a normal life and do professional sports without getting sick all the time? The doctor assures me that my case is mild and nothing to worry about but I am scared about my future and life expectancy...

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  • Posted

    I don't think you need to be alarmed. I too have 'mild' bronchiectasis and most of the time I can ignore it. I'm a bit more prone to chest infections perhaps than most people but, by keeping physically fit (-ish), eating well, and taking turmeric tablets (not official treatment, but I believe the turmeric helps) I can just get on with my life, troubled only by a bit of a pesky cough now and then. Of course when I do succumb to a bout of bronchitis it can last longer than for most people - and that can be a real drag - but I always have an 'emergency' prescription of antibiotics at the ready so that I can start treating the infection promptly. So please don't be scared; it's perfectly possible to live with bronchiectasis without it impinging too much on your 'goals in life'. I'd suggest making sure you have a CT scan every few years to monitor the condition (I've had to request this. No point in waiting for it to be offered to you) followed by a consultation with a respiratory specialist who can keep you up to date with the most suitable treatments.

    I'm in my sixties now and still working, successfully, with an active and fairly brilliant life and so I've no complaints. There are FAR worse conditions. If anything, having bronchiectasis just gives me extra motivation to look after myself properly which, in the long term, I reckon is likely to increase life expectancy rather than reduce it!

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  • Posted

    Hiya,

    Look don't be scared or worry about how long you are going to live with this, as people on this forum have had BX for 40 years plus, me I have been dealing with it now going on 6 years and have it under control when I was real bad and had the same feelings that you may have,you just need to deal with it,I do a Nebulizer with Sodium Chloride & Albuterol twice a day and use Symbicort 2 puff each time I finish and it controls my breathing and removes the Mucus that you need to do everyday in order to keep this controlled,the thing with BX is that you tend to get tired more often than you are accustomed to, also just deal with it and keep going I'm 74 years old and I act like I'm 29 so you will do just fine,the secret to living long is " YOU DON'T LET THE OLD MAN IN "

    You have a long way to go.

    All the Best.

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  • Posted

    Hi Manu

    What you're going through is not much fun, both the diagnosis and the worry. Carrying on as suggested by all here with exercise, healthy diet and good sleep is crucial for both your body and dealing mentally/emotionally with this big diagnosis.

    I am wondering how you were diagnosed and what kind of doctor you've seen. Did they do a CT scan of your lungs? Have you seen a pulmonologist (doc/specialist/ consultant who deals only with lung issues)? Given such a DX at such a young age, if it were me, I'd get a 2d opinion, tho only after that CT scan.

    There are a few people on here who were diagnosed at a young age and most of them -- maybe all -- have a different form of BX from the rest of us. I hope that one of them will pop up here soon as they know so much more about living with this from teen years onward than do those of us diagnosed in our 50s - 70s. You might do well to see if there's a young people's support group near you for those with chronic diagnoses. Ask your doc for help finding such a group.

    Are you seeing a rheumatologist for the immune system issues?

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    • Posted

      I was seen by a pulmonologist. He is one of the best doctors in my country and he gave me this diagnosis after a blood test, spirometry( both were good) and a CT scan. He said that i have some immunity problems so he prescribed me Luivac. He prescribed me symbicort and saline solution as well. He said that it is mild and i don't have to worry about it but honestly i am really scared concerning my life expectancy and my general way of living from now on...

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    • Posted

      I am very glad to hear that you've got a good pulmonologist, and that you've got some meds. Follow the medical regimen even when you feel better. If a med doesn't make you feel better after 3 weeks, tell the pulmo.

      It is terrifying to get such a diagnosis at your age. I wish i had some specific thing i could tell you beyond eat a good diet and exercise as much as you can. Did you ask the pulmo about the possibility of going pro -- i guess in cycling as i'm not aware of that option in swimming? The pulmo knows more about your possibilities than any of us here.

      If none of the folks who were diagnosed in their youth pop up in a week, you may want to post again but have the topic line say "18 years old w/bronchiectasis" or "BX under age 20", something like that.

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