Asthma has changed-- went from controlled to completely out of control

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lothianjavert
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 16
   Posted 1/15/2008 8:18 AM (GMT -7)   
I'm at my wit's end. I don't know what is going on with my body any more!

I've had asthma as long as I can remember. It's just something I've always had to deal with. In college, I spent a LOT of time in the ER, or hospitalized, but I was finally stabilized w/ inhaled steroids. Pulmicort seemed to work wonders for me, and I would only have major problems if I was ill (upper respiratory infections still wreaked havoc and I would need a course of pred along w/ antibiotics).

However, this past year, my asthma has gone crazy. I've had many, many major attacks, I've been to the ER several times, and once again, I'm waking up 3 or 4 times every night to use my rescue inhaler. I'm also being maintained on 20mg prednisone a day, which is keeping the attacks more under control, but this is not an option forever! (I'm starting to look like a marshmallow! It's been 6 months on prednisone now.) I can't seem to go below the 20mg/day without ending up in the ER. A good part of this fall I was taking 100 mg/ day (my lungs were protesting about pneumonia, and it took that much to get the inflammation under control). I am still taking the pulmicort, at a high dose, as well as xopenex, flonase, serevent, proventil and allegra D (for my other allergies).

The only thing I can think of that has changed is that we moved last year. Our old house had all wood flooring, and the new one is all wall to wall carpet (7 year old carpet). The former owners had cats and a dog, but we cleaned the carpet thoroughly when we moved in, and have cleaned it several times since.

At this point, I just don't know what to do. :( I had an appointment set with a pulmonologist, but that's been canceled (I received a message on my answering machine yesterday) so I'll have to reschedule, and who knows how many more months it'll be before I can get in.

ARGH!

Red_34
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Date Joined Apr 2004
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   Posted 1/15/2008 11:27 AM (GMT -7)   
Any time I hear of an asthma sufferer moving into another home, I cringe! Who knows what kind of history that house has??? It is possible that the carpet is still giving you trouble because no matter how many times you shampoo it, dirt, debri, (animal) urine etc. can sink into the padding and no amount of cleaning will get rid of that.
 @--->--SHERRY--<---@
Moderator for Allergies/Asthma and Co-moderator for UC
~Left sided Uc -'92 - Colazal (9 daily), 6mp (50-100mgs), Colocort, Prilosec, Biotin, Forvia, Pro-Bio**Unable to tolerate Asacol, Rowasa or Canasa** ~Allergies - Allegra & Singulair
~Secondary Reynauds Syndrome - '04 - Norvasc~Fibromyalgia - '06~No meds
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Another Day
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Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 1055
   Posted 1/15/2008 11:41 AM (GMT -7)   
I have a feeling your pulmonologist is going to react the same way Sherry did.  You are probably going to need to rip all that old carpet out.  Also, for someone who has asthma as severe as you seem to, you might ask your doctor about Xolair.  It is an injection taken monthly.  I have been on it for about five years.  It does cost around $10,000 per year but insurance companies are getting smart and paying for it.  It is much cheaper for them than paying for ER visits and in-patient hospital stays.  I have not had any reaction to this medication at all.  I don't have ER visits or hospital stays.  It is for severe asthmatics.  I think it would be worth you talking to your doctor about.  I hope you feel better soon.
 
Take care!
 
Carla

Moderator, Allergies/Asthma
 
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Epilepsy, asthma, GERD, depression, hypothyroidism, tinnitus


lothianjavert
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Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 16
   Posted 1/15/2008 11:58 AM (GMT -7)   
Xolair is something I really want to bring up. I had been doing so well on the pulmicort that it hadn't been needed before, but I think now it may be. My primary care doc does NOT want to go there, so it'll be something I'll talk about with the pulmonologist.

I also think that the carpet is a key. My asthma's unruliness coincides perfectly with our move. We didn't move very far, so the pollens/allergens in the outdoor environment should be the same, and the house is mold free, but the one big difference is the carpet. And it is NOT new carpet, so yes, I imagine there's all kinds of gross stuff in there! (hmmm... 7 years of someone else's pets and children....and dustmites)

Financially we can't replace it right now (we have nasty OSB underneath-- I could handle it if it was a cement slab or something that wouldn't give you splinters to walk on), but I think we may at least go ahead and do the bedroom, and put laminate down-- that should be affordable. Hopefully that will help some. Our old townhouse had hard wood floors, and the little bit of wall to wall there was we ripped out and replaced with hardwood right away. The TH also had a hepa filter attached to the furnace, and the new house doesn't.

There was a little part of me that was afraid to move... in part because of this... but the neighborhood we were in was changing, and not for the better. We wanted to sell while we still could. I LOVE this house-- except for the carpet. When we bought it we planned on staying more or less forever and saving up to do things like rip out the carpet and install hardwood flooring and tile.

Dumb question: Can I put filter membranes over the floor registers so that they don't blow dust, etc. around?

Red_34
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 23427
   Posted 1/15/2008 3:36 PM (GMT -7)   
That's not a dumb question at all! In fact, I encourage everyone to put cheesecloth over their vents especially if they suffer from allergies or asthma. My sons pediatrician is the one that gave me that tip. And you will be astounded as to how much stuff that actually collects.
 @--->--SHERRY--<---@
Moderator for Allergies/Asthma and Co-moderator for UC
~Left sided Uc -'92 - Colazal (9 daily), 6mp (50-100mgs), Colocort, Prilosec, Biotin, Forvia, Pro-Bio**Unable to tolerate Asacol, Rowasa or Canasa** ~Allergies - Allegra & Singulair
~Secondary Reynauds Syndrome - '04 - Norvasc~Fibromyalgia - '06~No meds
To help Healingwell - click here: DONATE
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Another Day
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Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 1055
   Posted 1/15/2008 6:54 PM (GMT -7)   
I'm with you, I would rip up that bedroom carpet even if you just had to have concrete for awhile.  It is certainly understandable that you've just bought this new house, that you can't go in and start tearing it up.
 
As for the Xolair, I don't think many primary care physicians administer it any way.  I think it is usually administered by allergists and pulmonolgists.  I doubt that the drug reps target PCP's for Xolair because they are not normally going to be seeing the severe asthma patients.
 
Good luck with everything and please let us know how you are doing.
 
Carla

Moderator, Allergies/Asthma
 
Help support the forums so we can support you:  http://www.healingwell.com/donate
 
 
Epilepsy, asthma, GERD, depression, hypothyroidism, tinnitus


apple92681
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 636
   Posted 1/15/2008 9:00 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi there, :-)

I am an HIV Counselor for a clinic in Los Angeles and I normally post advice in the HIV forum, but I noticed this forum on asthma.

My mother suffers from chronic asthma and she seems to be having a terrible time of it this year, for some reason, but this typically happens to her during the winter months -- even in relatively warm California!!!

But her asthma was worse when she had carpet in the house. I can remember everything she went thru. I took her to the Sansom Clinic in Santa Barbara and they advised us to tear the carpet out as well. Once we did, her asthma subsided quite a bit. When we tore the carpet up, there was an entire layer of dirt underneath it -- yes DIRT! Can you believe that???

I would suggest having the carpet removed and having some area rugs put in for the time being.

I hope your asthma gets better sweety! :-) Trust me, I have sat in the Emergency Room with my mother enough times to understand the reality of what you're going through...

Well Wishes! :-)


--HIV/STI Counselor, Hope Treatment Center, Los Angeles, CA--

Post Edited (apple92681) : 1/15/2008 9:15:27 PM (GMT-7)


Ceres
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 59
   Posted 1/15/2008 10:38 PM (GMT -7)   
If you can get your bedroom allergy free, so to speak, at least you'll have a nice little haven to retire to.

Do you also have chemical sensitivities or food allergies? My food allergies have gotten much worse now that they've added enhanced flavorings into almost everything. Just thought I'd ask.

lothianjavert
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 16
   Posted 1/16/2008 8:15 AM (GMT -7)   
Luckily I don't seem to have food allergies, though some additives like sulfites will get me. Chemical cleaners/fumes will too!

Leaving the floor bare isn't an option, it is OSB-- oriented strand board, so it would be nasty splinter city (and hard to clean) unless it was covered with a heavy layer of epoxy. I WISH we had cement! (there are lots of cool finishes that can be done with cement)

I talked to Steve last night,and we're going to go laminate shopping this weekend, to check on styles and prices to at least do the bedroom ASAP.

I like the cheese cloth over the vents idea! I'll have to do that! That might help cut down on some of the particulates in the air.

Ceres
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 59
   Posted 1/16/2008 10:33 AM (GMT -7)   
Yes I like the cheesecloth idea too. Would you put cheesecloth to cover the vents that are up in the ceiling? What about the intakes?

Red_34
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 23427
   Posted 1/17/2008 5:19 AM (GMT -7)   
What I did for my son was put one layer of cheesecloth over the intake and 2 layers on the vent. I replace the cloth every 2 weeks or depending on how filthy it got. You don't want to put too many layers on the intake because it will make the furnace work harder and it might increase your energy bill and the same for the vents. I never had vents on the ceiling but I'm sure the same can be applied there as well.
 @--->--SHERRY--<---@
Moderator for Allergies/Asthma and Co-moderator for UC
~Left sided Uc -'92 - Colazal (9 daily), 6mp (50-100mgs), Colocort, Prilosec, Biotin, Forvia, Pro-Bio**Unable to tolerate Asacol, Rowasa or Canasa** ~Allergies - Allegra & Singulair
~Secondary Reynauds Syndrome - '04 - Norvasc~Fibromyalgia - '06~No meds
To help Healingwell - click here: DONATE
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groovey
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 127
   Posted 1/17/2008 9:32 AM (GMT -7)   
hi there, got rid of all carpets in the house and put down vynil which can be hoovered and mopped with disinfectant....made a great difference to asthma...also got allergy covers for pillows and duvet...breathe easy now....be happt groovey

Ceres
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 59
   Posted 1/17/2008 11:01 AM (GMT -7)   
Where do you get cheesecloth? confused

lothianjavert
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 16
   Posted 1/17/2008 11:27 AM (GMT -7)   
I"ve seen it at the hardware store, as well as cooking stores. It's used for a lot of different things. (for cooking, it's used to make a "spice bundle" that you can just pull out :) )

If you go to the hardware store, don't get the stuff that's glue impregnated-- that's used for picking up sawdust, etc. (i.e "tack cloth" ) I don't know if the glue would be another irritant.

Right now, even though I'm feeling cruddy, I'm also really, really relieved. I have a new appointment set to see a specialist (immunologist) in early Feb. (I'd had one and it had been canceled by the office! Doc was going on vacation!) and I hope there is something that can be done. It looks like it's going to be the same doc I saw when I was in college and having major issues w/ my asthma. He was wonderful!

While sometimes where I live is annoying, at least w/in a couple hour drive there is an Asthma and Allergy center and they really are good. I don't think I've ever been so eager to go to a doctor.

Red_34
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 23427
   Posted 1/17/2008 1:10 PM (GMT -7)   
Yes, try to get the cheesecloth from the food section. It's much more safer. I got mine in the cooking section of my local grocery store.
 @--->--SHERRY--<---@
Moderator for Allergies/Asthma and Co-moderator for UC
~Left sided Uc -'92 - Colazal (9 daily), 6mp (50-100mgs), Colocort, Prilosec, Biotin, Forvia, Pro-Bio**Unable to tolerate Asacol, Rowasa or Canasa** ~Allergies - Allegra & Singulair
~Secondary Reynauds Syndrome - '04 - Norvasc~Fibromyalgia - '06~No meds
To help Healingwell - click here: DONATE
http://www.myspace.com/82595818
"The quality of my life depends on the quality of my thoughts."
 
 
 
 

 
 


russconn1968
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 1/27/2008 7:05 PM (GMT -7)   
My asthma has done the same thing! I have been in and out of the ER, intubated twice, and still I am not feeling good. All of this started January 2 and I have no idea why. I was able to see a pulmonologist last Friday and did all the PFT's. I go back on Tuesday. You need to call your pulmonary clinic and reschedule ASAP. don't let them make you wait for months. I was able to get in just because when I was making the appointment I was wheezing really bad. Everyone I talk to says that you need a pulmonary doc so don't let them amke you wait!! Good luck!
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