more questions than answers...........

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hello, well today has me asking questions about the unknown yet again, having quite recently had lung infections that took weeks of antibiotics and steroids and brief hospital stay to control, was growing e-coli and various other weird fungus type things within me apparently! so today my doctors surgery has rang me to arrange an E.C.G. for tomorrow with the view to giving me Azomythicin?? cant remember its spelling! thing is why do I need an ECG? does having bugs growing in the lungs potentialy affect the heart? This illness does get worrying when every step I take seems to throw something else to worry about. Does anybody else have to undergo heart monitoring as a result of Bronchiectasis/asthma? thankyou for reading.........

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  • Posted

    Hiya David,

    Yes having a EKG done is the right thing,I have had BX for 3 years now and have them done every 6 moinths when I go in for follow ups, as the coughing sad to say take a toll on your heart,as I also take meds for that,but don't worry your GP is doing the right thingas you need to stay on top of this stuff.

    I'm also going to ask for AZITHROMYCIN on my next visit as reading about it, it seems to be the new thing to use with BX,as always there is the good and the bad with any Med but at this point in time jsut try it,

    Good Luck just stay with it you willm be fine,

    Regards,

    Charlie

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    • Posted

      Hi, Charles,  reading your response here to David, I wondered is it blood pressure meds you are on or do they give u something else to prevent heart problems from the coughing?  I feel sometimes, as I told David, that my coughing is so severe sometimes it almost feels like I could get a bit lightheaded for a second or two and then it subsides.  Hard to describe but I'm almost sure it's to do with my heart which normally I have no problem with.  I don't feel my doctor is on top of everthing even tho he listens to lungs and heart and I ask him what he hears - he says 'you have rales, or you have ----whatever else he hears, diff.lung sounds etc. but he doesn't say what we should do about that - I'm going to have to pin him down and get more explanation (if I can only get him off his cellphone texting!!)

      I see him next wk and want to be prepared with all the questions I'll have for him.

      One other thing, let me ask you,  how do u know when you have infection??  Thank you!

      Tabatha

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    • Posted

      When I asked my immunologist about whether a switch to Azithromycin was a good choice for a prophylactic antibi.  She said, "yes in your case - you suffer a bit from inflammation with your infections and Azithromycin is good at tackling inflamation". I'll be checking it out (switch from my currently favoured doxycycline or lebvafloxacin) as soon as I get to my favoured cheaper pharmacy in Bangkok
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    • Posted

      Hiya, Tabatha,

      As for any meds for coughing ,No they want you to cough to get the Mucus out ,as I said in other replies I do nebalizer with Sodium Chloride once in the morning and again at night followed by Albruterol this helps to get rid of all that stuff,so that an ifection doesn't start as for infection I know by the change in color mine is clesr most of the time some time with light yellow,but for me when it turns darker yellow more to brown i know there is an infection then I take antibio right away and it is gone.

      Stay well

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    • Posted

      Hi, Charles,

      Re infection - most of the time my mucous is clear or c/b pale yellow and sometimes it's a brown/green color but after a couple of coughs it's back to clear or yellow again - Dr. didn't say anything when i told him that.  I've not been on antibiotics at all for years other than pneumonia. So I'm wondering if the darker color is coming up from a 'pocket' where the bronchiectasis is located.  A CT scan I think years ago showed I had BX in one certain small part of my lung where apparently it's a common location (I forget the name of the area), and so if we have episodes of dark mucous and then clear again it could be that I have cleared that area or managed to pull from that area which was probably where old infection was.  And maybe there is no active infection.  Do you relate to any of that?  Or does even a small amt of dark mucous mean u have active infection regardless of how much.

      And do u get your sod. chloride fm OTC or is it prescription as it has to be a certain strength??

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    • Posted

      Hiya Tabatha,

      Thanks, that all makes alot of sense,doctors never even explained that to me,but of course I'm with the VA, wait 1hr to see them 15 mins in and out.

      My meds come from them and is prescription they are looking at some of the cause as Agent Orange from Nam but they really won't say it is related as they would have to compensate me and that is not worth the aggravation they put you through,I really think it is having pneumonia at birth that is the cause.

      Time for another CT when I get back to states.

      Thanks again for the info.

      Best Charles

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    • Posted

      Charles, I ask a lot of questions - I write them down so I don't forget - the doctor would not explain anything I don't think if I hadn't asked first.  My prev. Pulm. dr. was funny in that he had pictures or charts all around the little exam room and any question I had he'd point to the airway and say this is asthma or this is emphysema and he had a chart for all the inhalers - it was mind boggling - and he'd point to several quickly and teach me what each was for and he loved those charts well now I have a new doctor and he has enormous exam rooms with no charts whatsoever so it'll be more difficult with this one. I'll have to do a better job of listening and hope he can explain clearly.

      I understand you might not get explanation from the VA but it wouldn't hurt to ask questions I think you get different doctors, don't you on your VA visits?  You might get one who will give you explanations. My husband had a great VA office he went to and he got different doctors and some gave more attention than others.

      Maybe you'll see some good changes with the VA coming up with a new President!!

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  • Posted

    Hello David ,

    Sorry to hear you are having such a rough time . I was diagnosed with Brinchiectasis almost a year ago . I had pneumonia for 3 months , which led to further tests to get the diagnosis . For some reason ,when I was particularly unwell , my heart rate increases a lot . I Infact had 2 ECG's , one at GP , the other in the hospital .

    Recently I've had a chest infection & again my heart beat raised , which according to my specialist is normal .

    So I think ECG's are part of ' dotting the I 's & crossing the T 's ' as they say !

    Hope you feel better !

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  • Posted

    Hello David. My husband was exactly the same as you. He to started on Azithromycin along with numerous other AB and also Prednisilone. I think it prob is the normal for ECGs. He too experienced the heart problems. Hope your Az works for you. Take care.
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  • Posted

    Have had BronchX for a couple of years. Had a bad infection last year that saw me in hospital for 3 days in Thailand where I mostly live. The last night I was in I had my first ever taccychardia (fast heart rate). It was frighteningly fast at 160 beats per minute - normal is less than half that. Luckily it was in hospital so I was asured reasonably quickly that it was nothing to get panicky about and I felt totally fine apart form the boom-boom! The crash team came and confirmed my heart was otherwise normal.

    The registrar (general medic, not a lung specialist) advised me that some people react to a day of nebulised stuff (think it was bronchodilator in 3 or 4 sessions) ad cautioned me that maybe I should not nebulise stuff in future. Made a mental note to check that out with my UK specialists at Papworth. I was back in the UK in January inter-alia for a regular check-up. It also happened that I had a bit of mild taccy when I consulted my Papworth immunologist. She didn't like that much and got me put on a portable heart monitor over 2 days. They were reasonably happy with the product of that but since I still have occasional and very mild taccys when I have half signs of an infection she has recommended I have a once over from one of their heart specialists. She did not herself respond one way or the other to my enquiry whether I should discount nebulising in future. I have not yet needed to nebulise saline or antibis as part of my regular treatment anyway.

    The heart developments don't really alarm me that much - given I'm 65, reasonably fit throughout life and with no family history of heart disease. websites are not really alarmist about taccychardias and in some ways its good to know you will get some good monitoring by dint of being a BronchX sufferer.

    Will post more when I've had the heart appointment but that will not be for another couple of months. Here's hoping I'm still alive then! (joke - I trust)

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  • Posted

    Hello David

    Azithromycin if you look it up is an antibiotic for many infections but among the side effects it can cause a rapid and irregular heart beat so an ECG would show if you had an irregular heartbeat anyway, It may not indicate that even if you did take it that it would not be useful but be guided by doctor/medic.

    I have never needed it but then I am probably blessed.When taking any medecine weigh up the advantages and dont always dismiss because of side effects.Not everyone has side effects. Good luck.

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  • Posted

    Hi, David,  I want to hear that answer from others too.  My heart is fine as far as not having had problems with it, but the coughing I do gets me all riled up and when I'm in bed I feel my heart pounding faster and harder than in the daytime when I don't feel it at all.  But when I cough it's deep and sort of shakes my body and at times I can feel as if it might be a strain on the heart.  At my checkups when they check my heart there has not been any comment made about a problem but I'm going to ask if that severe coughing all the time is dangerous.

    You know I've read that if you have a heart rhythm that is off or fluttering or something like that you can cough real real deeply to get your heart going on the right rhythm again so that's why I worry about severe coughing.

    I think the drug u are talking about is Azithromycin.  I've taken that at different times over the years with no problem and no EKG or ECG.  I've also had non-tuberculosis mycobacteria which is real hard to get rid of or impossible to get rid of I've heard, but never a heart issue have I heard about from people who have it, or from my doctor at least in MY case.

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  • Posted

    Hi David - it's good belt and braces stuff as Az can cause irregular heartbeat (edit- sorry that was redundant, just noticed someone else said that!).

    The other side effect it can have is giving you a severely upset tummy. The leaflet says less than 1% ... On the other hand the articles looking at its effectiveness say 10%!

    I am unfortunately in the 10%, but for those who are not (like my mother for instance) it is a superb prophylactic. Not only as an anti biotic but also for its anti-inflammatory powers which are of cost very important in Bx. 

    Good luck with it!

    S

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