running out of air already

Posted , 7 users are following.

Hello, I am in early stage Copd, but tonight we went to the movies and my spouse and step-son went to the top of the theater, and i started up to join them by the time i got half way up i was out of air, when i sat down I couldn't talk. My lung test was almost normal, but now wondering if it is all broncular copd, are they all the same, and do they give the same meds for all of the  copds?

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  • Posted

    Hi Jean. I am recently diagnosed with mild emphysema and mild persistent asthma as well. COPD, as far as I understand it from what I've read is a general title for two obstructive lung diseases, emphysema and chronic bronchitis. One can have one or the other or often both. The meds that I take are prescribed for both copd and asthma (Symbicort Turbuhaler). My lung function is 83% and find stair climbing really difficult. My main symptom is shortness of breath and that's what brought me to the doctor. What symptoms caused you to see a docto
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  • Posted

    That's too complicated a question to answer in full, Jeana:  if you look over to the right on this page you'll see lots of links to info about COPD, which is an umbrella term for a number of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Diseases, including asthma and emphysema.

    If it was a lung function spirometry test you had, it should've included a test with ventolin, because how your breathing responds to it will indicate whether you have asthma or emphysema and you should've been told what percentage lung function you now have.  

    You don't say what you've actually been diagnosed with.   Medication is pretty much the same except that ventolin is only for asthma.  Do you have medication?

    Can you get to pulmonary rehab?  The earlier you can get there the better:  you'll learn heaps about how to slow down the progression of the disease and manage your life better.

    Good luck!

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    • Posted

      Hey Jude, I'm on Ventolin but have had Emphysema for at least 8 years!

      I only remarked to my good lady yesterday that in the early stages of the disease, Ventolin was my saviour (even though I was taking it inefficiently, something I only found out during my 2nd set of Pulmonary Rehab sessions), but it seemed to be less and less effective as the disease progressed .... until the past year or so when it has become my saviour again .... but only the original brand, not the cheaper versions being handed out by some pharmacies.

      As mentioned before in this forum, we all seem to suffer & react differently - a question of vive la difference rather than one size fits all !

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    • Posted

      I was repeating what I was told by the original pulmonary nurse, my then gp, subsequent gp. another pulmonary nurse and the rehab people:  that if ventolin improves someone's breathing they have asthma, if not, no use  using it, they have empysema.  It is possible to have both.

      Oh well I guess it doesn't matter if it works, but it does nothing at all for my emphysema

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  • Posted

    Hi Jeana I am the same as you.  I have 78% lung function and can live a fairly normal life except for climbing hills and stairs.   This is very common even in the early stages.  My advice is still to do it coz exercise is good but just take it more slowly.  You won't be so out of breath then.  It's horrible isn't it?  Take care.  bev x


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  • Posted

    Hi Jeana

    Whilst I'm obviously sorry to learn that you have COPD, all that I can say is  'welcome to the club' and next time you go out, look for the lift ! Family & friends do find it infruriating that you cannot talk when you are in a severely breathless situation, but later on you may well find that there are far more embarrassing side-effects than this ! 

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  • Posted

    Hi Jeana,

    I was born with severe asthma that crippled my lungs permanently by age 27 and by my early thirties until now at 57, my lungs function at around 30%. Pretty bad and I understand all to well what it feels like to suffocate. My pulmonary expert told me that to use the word suffocation was an exaggeration. I say that he has never experienced what I experience.

    You have a lot of good advice given to you on here. There is life with COPD. My condition certainly limits me to a great extent but I have found ways to cope.

    I found great help with an allergy specialist and I use Breo inhaler, Spiriva inhaler and Singular in pill form and Proair as my rescue inhaler. I also do breathing treatment with Duoneb.

    Find ways to relax like through meditation. Body massage keeps me calm because when I fight for air my many breathing muscles become tense. Also creating a happy place to visualize when you are in great distress helps tremendously.

    The worst thing you can do when you cannot breathe is to cry. It makes everything worse. And the people who might make you feel rushed because of lack of sensitivity, do not ever allow yourself to listen to them. It is as it is for you and you need not carry anyone else's baggage.

    Always use your medications as directed so your exacerbations will be fewer thereby slowing down the disease process. Diet plays a strong role also.

    I hope some of my personal survival techniques can help you. Overall, I refuse to let my severe condition scare me. Fear is not worth the effort.

    Hang in there!

    ♥Dawn, USA

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