lung X ray ok but Dr still thinks I have copd

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I went to doctor with bad breathing problems ad he sent me for an xray as he thinks I have copd but my lungs were clear. He still thinks I have it and now have to see respiratory nurse. Has anyone else got it who also had clear X ray. I'm confused.

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  • Posted

    I always say, leave it to the people who know what they are talking about, your doctor is not a lung specialist, and if your xrays came back clear I cannot understand why your doctor is referring you to a respiritory nurse.  The person you should be asking to see is the lung specialist at the hospital not the nurse who works at the GP practice. If your GP is unhappy with the xray findings and the hospital letter to your doctor has not stated anything wrong, then he should refer you to hospital for a second opinion. If his practice nurse takes you on on his advice you might find yourself taking medication you don't need.   Ask for a referral to someone who deals with lungs then you will know if there is a problem or not .
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  • Posted

    My lungs came back clear too panda, it was the spirometer test  that he based his COPD diagnosis on.The respiratory nurse will probably do a spiro test
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  • Posted

    I've never had a chest xray for COPD as it's easy to diagnose with a spirometry test which is what the respiratory nurse will do.   

    As far as I know x-rays can show up pneumonia and other lung problems but not COPD itself

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  • Posted

    I'll just add as they have it on record that I am an ex-smoker ( stopped 12 years ago) the first thing they think of with breathing problems is COPD...I had no blood tests or ECG ..I'm still not convinced that copd is causing all my breathing problems, being just diagnosed at FEV 78%...which means top end of moderate...Hopefully it's something mild that's causing your breathing problems  panda
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  • Posted

    Being 70 Years old when I told my doctor a out my shortness of breath he sent me for a nuclear stress test to see if it was blocked arteries and a pft pulmonary function test. The heart was fine. The pft showed 83% lung function. Was it asthma or copd. Next was a chest xray to rule out lung cancer etc. The chest xray was fine. Then had a cat scan which showed mild emphysema. I was referred to a pulmonologist who determined I have both. It's called ACOS Asthma COPD OverlapSyndrome. Am now on Symbicort Turbuhaler. Good with your appointment and hope you get to see the appropriate medical specialist.
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    • Posted

      I find it amazing that a doctor would put you through all those expensive tests when a simple spirometry test would've diagnosed COPD.

      I don't think you have two separate lung condtitions, as far as I'm aware COPD is an umbrella term for a number of lung conditions.  Anyway I guess that's just about labels, it's how you deal with the condition that's important - eg medication and lung rehab

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    • Posted

      Ada, did the correct thing by allowing her doctor to put her through all those tests. I understand Ada, because yes, two things can be diagnosed under the COPD label...why not? You don't think Asthmatics cannot get anything else? At first my doctor wondered if I had the ACOS, but after tests, another diagnosis was made. Also, some people, like myself, want to find exactly out what is wrong. Have you ever heard of, IPF (idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis)? Not to scare anyone, but check that condition out...this was another reason why I wanted to know exactly where I stood..it helped me to know and understand alot about my life span, etc. Also, what if I wanted to have the low volume reduction surgery, or, valves, or coils? I would have to know my exact diagnosis first. But, regarding medications and re-hab..this doesn't work with some conditions, like IPF, because with IPF, there are no medications that help, and re-hab they still progress fast nevertheless. So, it is good to know, and knowing is very powerful, so we know what can be done and/or what we can do for ourselves..its an assurance! 
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    • Posted

      Of course I know asthmatics can get other things, maybe I didn't make myself quite clear, so sorry if that's the case.   I meant that the asthmatic condition she mentioned comes under the COPD umbrella rather than being a separate condition, just as my emphysema does.

      I do know about IPF and I do know that rehab can help up to a point:  the rehab group I attended for emphysema included people with different lung conditions.  Rehab isn't a cure for anything but even learning different ways of breathing can make life more comfortable.

       

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    • Posted

      Jude, I understand...but, I am not sure, but I think the ACOS (Asthma COPD OverlapSyndrome) is a specific condition all in itself.

      Also, as for me, I had lots of expensive tests. I wanted these tests, because I wanted to make sure the obstruction wasn't something that could be cured, because I wanted to cure it, if possible. I was hopeful wishing.

      But, I feel the reason for why people get lots of expensive tests, is basically due to the doctor prescribing them, since this is his practice. Yes, they are very expensive too. But, for some people they are valuable, since it gives assurance knowing what they are living with...they also give lots of input to all the information that modern medicine can update me on regarding my condition, and new miracles that may come about, and if certain condition applies.

      Yes, I agree, Re-hab is a great thing to attend..and it teaches how to manage all conditions and gives good advise and breathing exercises, which anyone can use. The big tests can estimate how much exercise can benefit, even if they are progressive diseases. Some are faster rates than others. 

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    • Posted

      Yeah it is, but so is emphysema and other Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Diseases - they all come under the umbrella term COPD.

      Sorry if I'm being pedantic, some days I'm just like that....... it's not really important I guess.   Now you've got me worried that I haven't had all those other tests too:  I just accepted the pulmonary specialist's diagnosis of emphysema, which he based on the spirometry test.  I'll mention it to the practice nurse  next time I see her, she has come extra qualifications in pulmonary conditions so I guess she'll know.

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    • Posted

      Jude, It is only up to the individual if they want to know specifically what kind of COPD they have. In my case, I wanted to know due to all my reasons given in previous messages. I wanted to make sure it wasn't something they could cure. But, after all my tests,  it ended up that the very first doctor, the gp, was correct.

      Another reason why I went along with the specialist and took those tests, was due to having to purchase my own medical insurance,  a law in my country, so wanted to take advantage of it, and have the insurance pay for the tests, since I was paying monthly for the insurance anyhow.

      I didn't mean to worry you, but if you do take any test, the cat scan was the best, in my opinion (also the pft). 

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  • Posted

    Hi Panda, 

    The lung Xray was one of the very first things I've had before given my diagnosis. I also was questioning the Xray. My gp pulled out my Xray and showed it to me. The lungs looked very large. He told me that usually when Physician's see larger lungs, that this is how they know a patient has COPD. This is the trapped gasses extending the lungs. I did not have any mucus or anything else inside my lungs also.

    They can also tell by using the stethascope. By auscultating, all areas of both lungs, they listen for any reduced (far away sounding) breathe sounds (or added sounds such as crackles, wheeze, pleural rub or rhonchi). My gp stated that the first thing he noticed when he listened to my lungs was a reduced sound, due to larger lungs filled with gasses making my breathing far away and distant sounding.

    My next step was visiting a pulmonologist who had me take the Pulmonary Function Test (PFT). The PFT can't be denied, since it is a very powerful and simple test, by basically blowing into a pipe. It simply tests for obstruction of the lungs. If the lungs are obstructed, then we have something listed under the COPD label, causing obstruction of our breathing.

    COPD is only a name stating that we have obstruction, but in order to find what is causing it, then the physician has to perform other tests usually. I visited a Pulmonologist after the GP, and he scheduled me to take the PFT, and then various other types of tests, and then gave me his conclusion.

    When I had my Xray or any of my tests, I didn't have any mucus either. I still don't...very seldomly do I cough, and it is rare for me to get any mucus. It is just difficult to get my full breath of air. I have gotten use to it. 

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  • Posted

    FEV 78% ..top end of moderate?  Been back to see Dr after diagnosis by nurse two weeks ago. I have same % as kay123 however, Dr referred to the condition as chronic bronchitis and very mild!  Yet it seems others are told moderate..do Drs have a differing view point?   To add Panda22 I too would prefer for all the tests..my dr seems to have dumbed it down and saying do not need to see a specialist it's only very mild. 
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