new here and to copd

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i was only diagnosed with copd about 8 wks ago. i was in hospital in march for an operation, and had pnumonia while i was in there, so had to go for a check up 6 wks later, and the dr sent me for a lung function test, which resulted in the copd diagnosis. i'm scared, dont know what stage i'm at. have been put on a long acting steroid inhaler, dont know where to turn, can anyone help me, thanks

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  • Posted

    Hi, and sorry to hear about your diagnosis and can try to understand your fears, however the first thing to do is not to panic.

    Lots of people have this condition and live a full and happy life.

    You have to keep in mind it is a serious complaint but it can be managed.

    The NHS run COPD rehabilitation classes, they teach you how to breath properly and exercises to help to keep you fit without over doing it. Ask about them in your local area.

    That’s a key point don’t over do it, but to keep fit, when you feel tied and under pursuer take a rest.

    Take you med’s and do as the doctors say, they are the experts.

    The long acting steroid inhaler is only one of the meds used to manage this condition so don’t freak out if you are given more meds to take.

    When you get a chest infection go to the doc’s and get an antibiotic as soon as you can. The reason I say that is that with this condition your lungs are damaged and can not clear the rubbish out it then go’s nasty very quickly, you can tell when this is happening as the colour of you spit changes, don’t wait until it go’s green, if it changes at all (yellow or lemon) get your chest checked out. If you let an infection run it scars you lung and compounds the damage already there.

    Try to gently exercise regularly, stay away from K2 or the like, a walk around B&Q will do (it’s warm, flat and you can stop at any time).

    If you smoke stop NOW or you will get very ill very quickly.

    I don’t know anything about “stages” or “time scales” but the better you look after yourself the longer your quality of live lasts. I have seen people who looked after themselves still going strong after 20 or more years with this condition and people who did not look after themselves go down very quickly,

    I am not saying this advice a magic fixall but it’s the best thing you can do to help yourself.

    Keep a positive attitude, enjoy life and look after yourself.

    If you need any more info just ask, if I can help I will

    Gil

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  • Posted

    thank you very much for your advice, i have taken it on board and will follow it. if you dont mind i would like to keep in touch with you so i have someone regular to talk with x thank you x
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  • Posted

    No problem, can talk anytime. I will try to keep things short and to the point and cover a wee bit at a time, the thing is this condition can lead to other things going wrong with the body, therefore you have to take in the full person not just the lungs so keeping fit and motivated is important. I have found that the condition slows you down then your leg muscles (the biggest in the body) start to be lost. Muscle is good they have oxygen in them where as fat is not so good.

    Your body mass index is now more important to keep right you should not be too heavy and not too light. You can find out about your BMI on the BBC web site health page, poke around a bit you will soon find it ( http://www.bbc.co.uk/health/healthy_living/your_weight/bmiimperial_index.shtml ).

    When you have found what your BMI is then work to get it or keep it right, if it’s low build some muscles if it’s high stop some fat, work that out first then you know how your program starts,.

    Good luck

    Gil

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  • Posted

    dear gil, thank you so much. i have already checked my bmi and it in the normal range. i do know that this disease can affect the heart, and this worries me as i already have a heart condition (svt) irrgular rapid heartbeat, and i know it's the left lung that is damaged. but i will ask my consultant about this in feb when i see her again. again thanx i feel a bit better than i did before i first spoke to you, would you mind telling me a bit about you, because i'll start to feel guilty if you always listen to my probs, and then we can try helping each other best wishes sue x
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  • Posted

    Hi sue

    I am 55 and my wife 56, she has COPD, her diagnosis was give 16 years ago but she had all the problems for about 5 years before that.

    I saw my mother in law and my sister with this condition, they both have sadly past on.

    Over the last few years I have give all my time to trying to help the wife with this condition using some of the skills from learnt in my working life and a lot of other souses of information but most of all commonsense.

    I only found this web site after my son Robbie posted on the site, it was very sad to read and gave me some idea how he felt inside, so it’s not just the folk with the condition that suffer from it.

    I realised I had to do all I could to help my wife with the condition for both of them.

    I have posted a few times on this site about checking blood oxygen and pulse rates and how one affects the other something we learnt from keeping records, it also shows when a chest infection starts, when you should rest and when to get up and go.

    We have a good life and laugh a lot, some of the thing we laugh about shock others who think it should be all doom and gloom, life’s too short for that but we also talk about our fears, both help.

    My wife, is on the lung transplant list and has to stay fit and well for that.

    I could go on all night but that’s the bones of it

    Talk again soon

    gil

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  • Posted

    Hi Sue,

    That was excellent advice from Gil.

    I am sorry that you were diagnosed with COPD and it can be scary also you hear and read things that frighten you. That is why it is so important to learn as much as you can about the condition and the best way to manage it to improve the quality of your life.

    Let us know how you get on.

    Tessa

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  • Posted

    hi tessa and gil. gil i'm so sorry for your loss, i lost my dad just 2 years ago from a sudden heart attack, he was fit and a builder, it was such a shock i still dont think we over it. especially mum who spent 3/4 of her life, i try to be with her as nuch as i can, but with my health i'm useless to her. she used to call me every night cos she was lonely since the copd she dosent any more, which saddens me cos she told me i was the only 1 of her 4 kids that she could speak to,sorry cant go any further i'm getting upset, talk later luv sue x
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  • Posted

    Sue, I know how you feel. When you are trying to cope with this condition, you feel you are no real use to anyone. That is the worst thing to come to terms with, the fact that you can't do all the things you used to be able to do. It is so frustrating and upsetting. I try to get over this by concentrating on the things I can still do ( however small and however slow) and not the things I can no longer do. This helps a bit.

    I would imagine that your Mother tries not to lay too much on you now you have COPD. Do you get breathless when talking? Perhaps she notices that and feels it is too much for you.

    What medication and inhalers are you on.

    Tessa

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  • Posted

    hi sorry taken so long to answer, i been pretty ill. the only medication for the copd at min is seretide 500mg evohaler twice a day. cant talk anymore i in so much pain i going to bed, sorry, i make sure i try to get on every day from now thanx love sue xxx
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  • Posted

    Sue, I am so sorry to hear you are not well. Just stay warm, drink plenty and rest. Hope you feel better soon.
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  • Posted

    hey gil, happy new year, sorry i havent been here for so long. i hope you and your wife had a nice christmas and new year. i had my first copd attack yesterday and i've never been so terrified, we went to dr today and he told us it was a severe attack and if it happens again we have to call the ambulance. so we had a nice start to the year, i hope yours was better, love sue x
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  • Posted

    Sue,

    I'm sorry you have been so unwell and had a bad attack. I do hope that you have better health in 2009.

    Tessa

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