suspect emphysema

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I am dreadfully upset, I have had a cough that distresses people when they hear me in public, for over a year, saw the throat specialist ages ago but he found nothing, recently, past week, I have been nearly breaking ribs coughing and wheezing and very very difficult to cough up phegm, i am a 55 year old attractive woman but haven't smoked for eight years, given up completely but used to be heavy, I don't want to be saddled with this regressive deseise, which is dreadful, I have booked a GP appointment, recorded my cough at its worst but what am I to do?

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  • Posted

    Sounds like my cough, yes it's very embarrassing when your out and about or in company, so much so I restricted myself to shopping mostly on line This year, I was in a store with my grandaughter just before Xmas ,and had a coughing spell, everyone staring and looking at me,so much so my grandaughter said " shall we just go home nanny" I could have cried, 

    I have been given a flutter devise to use 2/3 times a day to help clear the rubbish off my chest/ lungs, this does make it easier ,I to am an x smoker ,I smoked about 15/20 a day for many years ,and was finaly admitted to hospital with pneumonia back in 1992 ,the consultant asked if I smoke ,I said yes,he said wrong answer ,,the next one will kill you ,I never had another one, but the damage was already done, I have copd,asthma,Bronchietis ,I'm 69 this month ,and feel lucky to be still here, and my life would be dam near perfect if I could get rid of this blooming cough, it's an awful loose chesty cough, I am under the care of some wonderful cold specialist nurses who are AMAZING ,if you ask your GP to refer you to them you won't regret it, they have been sooooooooo good to me ,,,and they don't mind my cough,,,,, in fact they chose to specialise in the illness, there advise is move more ,sitting won't shift the rubbish off my chest,I now ,after doing the 8 week course with them,go to the gym 2 days a week under there supervision, they have saved me from total despair, and my life on many occasion, good luck ,make a call to ask for a referral to them, like you I take pride in my appearance, and I'm told i look good for my age,,,,,,,but feel terrible inside with this dam cough, hope some of what I have said is of some help to you,best wishes, 

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    • Posted

      Hi Nanny, may I just say yours is a really heartening story and I think you are very brave.  Incidentally I have spoken to my sister and she feels that as I gave up approx eight years ago, smoking, then it is unlikely to be actually emphysema although obviously needs checking out, which I will do on Wednesday, when I see the doc, its much more likely I am heavily bronchial and I'm sure she can give me something for it, I felt so ill though, and also suffer with a mucosal rectal prolapse which may be an ulcer, so you can imagine the state I have been in , lol!!  I only have two days to wait for some answers from my GP hopefully but it seems like years, however I am glad you found some really sympathetic nurses, they can, I know be brilliant, and needless to say very hard worked, I know from my prolapse surgery last year, keep well, Nanny and I'm sure you look great for your age still!!  All the best, Fiona
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    • Posted

      Hi Nanny,

      I too live with severe conditions and I could feel your experience with your granddaughter in the store.  Coughing excessively in public is taken as a worse offense than if expelling gas!  You are so right about the moving around as it is soooo tempting to just sit and lay around when breathing is difficult and fatigue has already become a way of life.

      I am in the U.S. and wanted to share a medication name with you just in case you have not tried it and just in case it is available to you.  Benzonatate 200 milligrams up to three times a day.  Another name is Tessalon Pearls.  It is the ONLY medication that can help me prevent those coughing jags that do nothing but wrack and rattle my bones and cause me to pee on myself.  It will give a dirty urine test if one works in a place where they are tested, but other than that, I have felt no addiction or any side effects, just less violent coughing jags.

      Take care!

      Dawn U.S.

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    • Posted

      Thanks for the reply Dawn U S,,,,I spoke to my GP today and he has given me an antibiotic doxycycline,just 8 pills so a short course I presume. They are strong ,,,,,he is also booking me in. With the head copd specialist to go through all my symptons and medication to see if there's anything new

      I can/ need to to try ,,,,,,so I have made a note of benzonatate 200 mlg,and will ask her about it and any thing else,,,,,,take care Dawn and keep well,,,,and may I say ,,,,,,pee freely, haha,,,,,,we have to keep our sence of humour at these trying times, bye for now, 

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  • Posted

    Oh Gosh fiona21388, I understand completely about the hard coughing and the embarrassment in public!  I tend to avoid being in public places when I am in that condition because I can clear a room in no time. In fact, I think it is worse than expelling gas in public!  Ha!  Also, I have thrown a rib out of place near the back of my shoulder repeatedly because of violent coughing.  It would be well for me to see a chiropractor and get a body massage after those fits!  By the way, both of those services are fabulous helping habits to get into.

    I live with severe asthma from birth and in my 30's COPD was added to the mix, as well as emphysema.  I have never smoked, but since age 27, now 56, I have lost 70% of my lung capacity to permanent damage.  Functioning with only 30% lung function is difficult to say the least, but I refuse to let it pull me down.  

    You would benefit from seeing a pulmonologist and an allergy specialist to be able to capture a complete picture of what is aggitating your lungs.  I want to help you calm down because stress makes it worse.  Please do not allow any fear to take you over because after you find out what is wrong, you will need to then learn as much as you can about your condition and learn everyway possible to combat it and manage it.  

    Look at my picture, I should be blue all the time and I am not.  I am like a walking miracle.  It helps that I have a mental happy place I go to when my lungs are becoming sick and I need extra medical help.  You can develop this too, and I say this knowing full well that being short of breath is one of the scariest scariest on earth. 

    Being perfectyly honest with yourself is important too.  When you smoked, you knew you were taking a risk, so give yourself that acceptance and do not beat yourself up.  Then you are going to investigate what is going on, get a clear expert overall view of it and if it is something like asthma or COPD, you are living in the best century ever for the best treatments ever that will help you learn to control it and gain relief!  Yay!  

    I am with you.  Please keep in touch so we can know how you are doing and what you find out.  

    Praying for the best outcome for you and the strength to face head on whatever you need to face.

    Sincerely,

    Dawn U.S.

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    • Posted

      Hi Dawn, thank you for your kind thoughts, you obviously have a lot to contend with health wise.  I don't know I feel I have not two but three ends burning these days as I have this cough, a year long, prolapsed bowel and possible ulcer, and also suffer with schizophrenia and an eye complaint, plus hernia and gallstones!!!  That last one, gallstones, are "quiet" but were it not for my artistic projects and loving relations and friends and my social networking I don't know where I'd be.  But it gives me strength to know others have worse problems, what can I say?    After 21st of Jan I shall actually be making an appearance on you tube with three of my poems in a short video my friend, a Godsend to me, is doing the camera work, I don't know where I'd be without my friends, hoping your health improves Dawn, with best wishes, Fiona
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  • Posted

    Loving your way with words Fiona ,,,,,you've brightened my day,,,,,,I also try to keep positive and happy, but it's a bit difficult at times,,,,,I know full well that the majoroity of my illness is due to my stupidity in smoking for years,,,,,if  only we could go back in time,,,,,,,anyway ,,,,,,just thought I'd let you know,,,,,,my grandaughter just face timed me ,,before she goes to bed ,,,,,just for a chat to see if I was feeling any better ,,,,,bless her,,,,,,,she's such a caring little girl ,,,,,,and we have a good relationship,,,,,,it's my birthday in 10 days ,,,,and she said she would love to come for a sleep over ,,,,,do some jigsaws and decoparging etc ,,,,,and go for a meal,,,,,,,,,that's if I'm up to it,,,,,,,? ,,

    ," ,,you bet I'm up for it ".   time spent with our grandaughter is very precious and I/we look forward to immensely ,,,  Lois is her name,,,,she's 11 ,,,,and ,my little angel ,

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    • Posted

      Hi Nanny, I am so pleased you are able to enjoy yourself despite being unwell and long may it continue, I have my art, photography and poetry, a loving sister and great nieces and nephews.  Just to update I have seen my GP today and she has put my mind at rest, she doesn't think it's emphysema, but as I'm concerned with year long cough has sent me for a chest x ray and they've acted very quickly, being seen Friday afternoon, which amazed me, with my bowels I've always had to wait a good month for tests so can't complain, with best wishes, Fiona
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  • Posted

    I'll keep everything crossed for you, sounds like you have a good GP ,like me, 

    i also love photography ,,,,but I'm not very good at it ,,,,it's mainly family photos, but what a coincidence ,,,,,,I love writing poetry to ,,,when our daughter got married in 2001 ( at the Lake District. ) it was a small weddding just close family and friends,as per usual she was given away by her dad,,,,,,but she wanted me to feel more apart of the service,,,,so she asked if I would do a reading ,,,,,,( I go to my local church when as often as I can and do the readings ) but as this was a civil ceremony religous readings weren't allowed,,,,,so I decided to write my own poem,,,,,,,I suprised myself ,( friends have since had copies of it for their daughters weddding ) I had copies made into scrolls tied with ribbon and placed one on each chair in the service room ,,,,,,thinking they would be a lovely keep sake ,,little did I know that my daughter had had a peak at it ,,,,,and asked the registra if she would ask me at some point to read the poem to everyone,,,,,,,,god my  legs were trembling ,,,,,,but I did it ,,,,and it went down really well ,,,,tooo well really ,,,,,as my daughter filled up and was crying and came over to give me a hug,,,,,,,,but I felt sooooooo proud and happy it was a joyous day,,,,,,that was the start of me and poetry except I loved doing it at school, ,,,,,I then wrote a poem when my daughter told us we were to become grandparents for the first time,,,,,I had been really poorly ,,,,,and in ICU ,,,,,,,and was concerned I wouldn't be around for this momentous occasion,,,,,,,so I wrote a poem to the baby that my daughter was carrying,,,,,,all I knew was she was to be a little girl ,,,,,and my daughter had always wanted a girl so they could share the same bond between mother and daughter ,,,,that we had and still do share,,,,,that was 11 years ago,,,,,,,I'm still here sharing the bond with my beautiful girls ,,,,,,and work hard every day to stay with them as long as I possibly can,,,,,,but the bond will never ever be broken ,,,,,they are my angels on earth ,,,,,and I have a special angel in heaven ,,,,,,my mother ,,,,who obviously is doing her best for me still ,,,,to keep me here where I belong, ,,,,I have a job to to do,,,,,,,and that's to be here for my girls and my dear hubby,,,,,who by the way stays by side all the time taking good care of me,,,,,I thank god for my  god for my  family ,,,,,,who give me the motivation every day to get out and  about,, and move and exsersise,,,,,and eat well, and live my life, ,,,,,,,,oh sorry just realised I've been going on rather a lot ,,,,sorry Fiona 51388 . Best wishes and good luck ,,,,Georgina, 

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    • Posted

      Hi Georgina, what a beautiful, movinng story, lovely and thanks so much for sharing it with me, do you know i have a niece and her son my great nephew that come over every couple of weeks and sort out all my computer and phone woes, do DIY for me, take me shopping etc, they are also my little angels, and I dont know where I'd be without them, on my nephews birthday, just after Christmas I gave him a St Christopher, because he likes his bikes, there is nothing he doesn't know about them, a bit like computers etc, but he was made up!!  My self I have a vegetarian diet, and I am I'll admit naughty sometimes, with chocolate and cake and probably too much cheese, but try to be good, and have now an exercise bike, which my nephew assembled for me, and whenever I feel able I pop on it and do my eight miles, its great!  i too was good at poetry at school, top of the class, and at art and these days photograph flowers and swans, geese, ducks, gulls, edit them to best effect and have started an art class, and my poetry is going to be featured on you tube with a good friend of mine coming down from Southampton to do the videoing, i am delighted to have got so far, as well as the ebook of poetry/photographic images that I had published last year, and don't be daft, you have not gone on too much at all, it is great to find sympathetic friends who will really listen to you when you are down and share some of the highs as well as the lows, after all, good luck!!
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  • Posted

    Hi ,please let me know when I can get on youtube to hear your poetry,,,,,you are one clever lady,,,,,mine are just simple that would only mean something to me and my family,,,,,I wish you well with your publishing,
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    • Posted

      Thanks Nanny, I believe all poetry is a valid form of expression so keep it up!!  Thanks for your interest, if you type in From the Songbook Fiona Josa Phoenix or probably Fiona Josa Phoenix poetry it should come up, but after the 21st probably as that's when my tech friend is coming down to do the videoing,  I wish you all the very best, Fiona xx
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  • Posted

    Hi Fiona

    I posted about my Problems Same as Yours on C.0.P.D forum before Christmas i went bk to my

    G.P.and he said i had a chest infection i had it for a month it only cleared when i took a Steroid Tablet

    even though G.P.said i couldnt have any due to my

    Diabetes as would make it higher but what didnt help was the fact that i also have asthma to contend with at the same time really made me feel

    ill.

    Hope you get yourself sorted soon.

    Dolphin500.

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