Flu symptoms

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Hello all

I joined this group a few weeks ago but this is my first time posting a question in here.

Iv been diagnosed with copd I’m 51, it’s been explaine there’s 3 levels and I’m level 2. Yesterday I started sneezing non stop Iv had a headache for a few days. 

I have a cpap machine I’m trialing at the min  thought that’s what had given me a headache?.

My question is I’m prescribed antibiotics & steroids to have in ready incase I get an infection how do I know when the time is needed to take them I have flu symptoms but my chest atm seems fine any advise please. 

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  • Posted

    Hi Lesley,

    i am new too and also 51. To be honest I’m so confused about copd as I have been prescribed Spiriva inhaler to help me butbonly received it tonight so haven’t tried it yet as terrified of it. I haven’t actually been diagnosed with copd so how can I no if I definitely have it. All I’ve had is Spirometry tests which I couldn’t manage the last one and having a chest X-ray tomorrow. Nobody can tell me if I have copd or not so now I’m worrying. You say you have steroids and antibiotics so I may be wrong as not in your position or I might be who knows but if it was me if my chest was fine and no trouble with your breathing I wouldn’t take them yet but phone your dr tomorrow for advice. I’m so sorry I can’t be of help as if like me everything is so confusing. If you don’t mind me asking how are you actually diagnosed with copd as I can’t get anywhere with my dr surgery.

    i hope everything goes well with you 

    mandie

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    • Posted

      Mandy, you may have to finish the spirometry in order to know if you have COPD. start the inhaler as it may take some time to take effect, tho honestly, if one is afraid of all meds there may be no point in going to a doctor at all. Likewise no point in an emergency pack if you won't take the meds, tho in the States idiot docs almost never give these out for those who could benefit & would use them properly.

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    • Posted

      Hi Mandy

      I was diagnosed last May after a chest infection I got in March 2017, I had spirometer tests both at my GP then X-rays, then waited till January to see a consultant where again I had spirometer tests. I was started on spireva in haler & fostsir but was changed around December to incruse. I worked well with the spireva but I’m working well with the new ones too,  at my consultants app they also tested me for obstructive sleep apnea which was then confirmed after an overnight sats monitoring Iv now been issued with a cpap machine for sleeping I’m

      Not getting on too well with this tho. I had a very bad chest infection again in February which resulted in antibiotics & steroids. I am very confused with it all too amongst being diagnosed the GP said I also have severe asthma so finding a balance of which one I giving me trouble at the time is difficult and confusing. I am currently coming to the end of a 6 week PACE programme which I’m going to last appointment today so I will bring up my concerns today. 

      I am coughing up phlegm and it has changed in colour I usually bring up phlegm a lot and am on carbocisteine tablets to loosen it. I’m not any more short of breath than when I don’t have a cold this was why I’m unsure  to start AB without steroids & if I could do that. Thankyou for your reply and good look with your diagnosis 

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    • Posted

      Thanks for your advice. I will give the Spiriva Respimat inhaler a try I’m just a little nervous. Just hope that I do it correctly as a 10 second demonstration from the nurse wasn’t that helpful but I’m reading the instructions very closely.

      i was not offered another spirometry test she just said that the 3rd reading wasn’t good enough to give an accurate reading so I left the surgery confused. I am having a X-ray today but was told that this wouldn’t confirm any diagnosis . I do smoke but trying to quit now all I want is to know but I’m never given a straight forward answer. Anyway hopefully the inhaler will help me and my breathing will improve.

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    • Posted

      Hi Mandy

      Inhaler is the same I was given and like you a 10 second lesson, I didn’t want to change from it as I liked it but developed a very dry and sometimes sore mouth that’s why they changed it,  my nurse at the surgery bounces about in her conversation which confuses me all the time I’m in the uk don’t know where you are?. I too am still a smoker I have reduced greatly but not stopped yet!. 

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    • Posted

      Hi Lesley,

      Im in the UK as well and i agree the nurses really confuse you as i honestly thought that i needed to take the Spiriva through an aero chamber but just phoned up the pharmacy as they didn't deliver a spacer for the rescue inhaler and they told me that the aero chamber was for the rescue inhaler and to use the Spiriva as it is like smoking a pipe. Now i am confused. I thought i took everything in when she showed me but it went through one ear and out the other. Did you use Spiriva without a spacer. Also the rescue inhaler ive been prescribed is Salamol a salbutamol inhaler so hoping this is correct. Next time i go to the drs im going to record the conversation then i wont get mixed up.

      Thanks for your help as i feel totally lost.

      Mandie

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    • Posted

      Defo try the spireva inhaler, I didn’t use the spacer as it’s inhaled differently, I was told to start my breath in then finish the breath in with the spireva if that makes sense,  but starting my breath in I’m already opening my lungs!!.  I have salbutamol too mainly for my asthma. 
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    • Posted

      I am going to start the Spiriva tomorrow as just had chest x-ray and didn't want to risk any side effects. Hoping all will be ok with x-ray. I find inhaling hard and ive noticed i inhale through my nose rather than a deep inhale through my mouth so been practicing today and now have chest pains. Think im going to have to put a peg on my nose then i have no choice. I never realised until now how difficult it all seems to use and understand inhalers and spacers. I really feel for people that have had to use them for years. I guess once we are used to them then it will become second nature. Thank god for this forum though as i would be totally lost without it. Hope all is going well with you and your breathing.

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    • Posted

      Mandy, I hate to say this but you are making this all much harder for yourself. Everyone on earth inhales through their nose unless their nose is stopped up or has been very badly broken ,,, or when swimming where we inhale with mouth & exhale thru nose. Our bodies are designed for nose inhalation but magically also work when we inhale thru our mouth. Once you have the inhaler in your mouth it is going to be very easy to inhale thru your mouth.

      I'm certain that the company that makes your inhalers has a "how to use" video on their website. Grab your inhaler & go to that website, don't mess around the internet looking for other videos. Use that one & start using the inhaler today. Why wait another day?

      As to smoking, your lung association will have excellent free advice and probably Patient does, too. It isn't easy for most of us but is vital to accomplish for the sake of your health.

      The problem with the spirometry: call them or your doc up & ask them to schedule another one. I don't understand why they didn't just keep at it til they got a valid result, which is what they do here until you pass out (joking), but there should either have been an explanation along the lines of "she's physically incapable of doing the last round," or they should've rescheduled. I very much doubt that you are physically incapable of completing a spirometry; you would've been under serious care for lung problems for a long time & quite familiar with using inhalers, I think.

      Give the worry a break & start the inhaler. The doc gave it to help you but it can only do that if you use it.

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    • Posted

      I couldn't agree more aitarg35939,

      I have worried to much about this but i did use the inhaler today and to be honest ive had a rough day. My breathing was worse and terrible headache but think it was due to anxiety as i do suffer badly with panic attacks. I phoned the pharmacy a little while ago and explained my breathlessness etc and she said to use the blue rescue inhaler. I know its only my first day but it did scare the hell out of me but she also said try it tomorrow and if the same things happen then i should see the doctor about changing the inhaler.

      With the spirometry test it was the last one that  couldn't quite breath enough out and i said that i could give it another go as i knew i hadn't done it with my full attention but she said that i was only allowed to do a certain amount. This is why i haven't any idea of what i have or may not have. I had a chest x-ray yesterday so hoping to speak to the doctor on Friday maybe then i will get some answers for a change. Thanks for the video info i have found it very interesting and thankfully i did do it correctly today. I hope that tomorrow i will be less anxious then i might not feel this bad again.

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  • Posted

    Hi Lesley I am in the same boat I leave my antibiotics till last min as I don't like taking them u will know when to take them your body will tell you mine is when I can't get my breath good luck

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    • Posted

      Thankyou for your reply, it’s all confusing when to take them isn’t it, my phlegm has changed in colour to greens so I know there is an infection brewing in there. 
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  • Posted

    HI I think there are 4 levels.  Mild,  moderate,  severe,  very severe.  As for when to take ab's and/or steroids if you are coughing coloured mucus either yellow or green this usually indicates a chest infection and you need ab's and maybe steroids as well.

    If you are having an exacerbation only with no infection you will find you are more breathless than usual.  If this continues and meds don't help then you might need just your steroids.  Obviously is your breathing is very bad call an ambulance.

    It is possible to have a chest infection without coughing up gunk but you would feel very ill with it.  If in doubt then always see your doctor as it's much better to be safe than sorry.  x

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    • Posted

      Thankyou

      I am at PACE today & there’s always a respirorty nurse there I shall ask them weather it’s time to start them 

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  • Posted

    Hi Lesley there are four stages not three as when to use your antibiotics & steroids the antibiotics are for when you have an infection & you will find it real hard to breath & the steroids will help you but don't be to quick to take them try with just the antibiotics first they will take two or three days to kick in & the best way of keeping infection free is by keeping your chest free of flem as that is where the infection will take hold there are a few ways that will help you do this exercise as much as you can i also use Eucalyptus oil & Aerosure i have stage four COPD & i have not had an infection for over a year good luck  

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