Severe asthma attack after 20+ yrs of great control

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Ides
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Date Joined Nov 2003
Total Posts : 7077
   Posted 2/21/2009 12:19 PM (GMT -7)   
I have been hit with 1 bacterial and 2 viral turned bacterial infections in 10 weeks. This has taken a toll on my well-controlled asthma. I have been on albuterol 4 mg tablets three times a day with a proventil rescue inhaler for 20 years. I have not had an asthma attack in all that time until NOW.
 
My pulse oximeter reading was 89% when I arrived at the doctor's clinic. Got a nebulizer treatment with albuterol. My pulse ox went up to 92-93%. After much negotiation, talked him in to letting me go home instead of being admitted. He put me on antibiotics, prednisone and gave me a mid level Flovent inhaler. Awoke the next morning wheezing just as bad. Back to the clinic. Another pulse ox of 89%, another nebulizer treatment. He consulted with the pulmonalogist about admitting me and they decided to add Claritin and sinus washes to the mix and let me go home. They also sent me with a peak flow meter to use. Imagine I have never had a peak flow meter in all these years. They had me do peak flow readings prior to leaving and the best reading I got was 200. [Not good.]
 
Yesterday afternoon. I could tell the steroids were finally kicking in and I got a peak flow reading of 330. When my doctor called me at home, he said I needed to go to the ER today for another nebulizer treatment if my peak flow got below 200. I am sitting here trying to wait for the prednisone to kick in this AM because I want to avoid the large military medical hospital ER at all costs. My peak flow is 210 and I am wheezing pretty badly.
 
I HATE this. I am sick of being sick. Thank for reading this rant.
Moderator Crohn's Disease Forum
CD, Ankylosing Spondylitis, lupus, small fiber peripheral neuropathy, avascular necrosis, peripheral artery disease, degenerative disc disease, and a host of other medical problems.
 


SmurfyShadow
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 2386
   Posted 2/21/2009 3:23 PM (GMT -7)   
I feel for you. Have you tried taking a hot soak? Breathing in hot vapor sometimes helps. You're probably flared up due to all your viral flare ups lately. With you also having auto immune problems, you could be taking longer to recover from it. Sometimes I just sit in a hot tub, or breath in coffee or tea. You don't want it obvisiloy going under 200, so I want you to take it easy. 210 is above 200 if you ask me, hehe. However, remember that if you black out, you are to call 911. That is lack of oxygen to the brain then. Basically, an asthma attack is not getting enough oxygen. I need to lay the lil one down now, but keep me posted
 
Smurfy Shadow
 
DX: Wegener's Disease, Migraines, Diabetese Type II, PCOS, Lactose Intolerant, Benign Heart Murmer, Depression, Asthma, Asperger's Syndrome, Necrotizing Gramultous Inflamation in eye, A.D.D., Acid Reflux
 
Medications: CellCept, Prednisone, Tri Nessa, Percocet, Metformin, Prilosec, Protonix, Zantac, Advair, Cingulair, Albuterol, Calcium + Vitamin D


Red_34
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Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 23424
   Posted 2/21/2009 6:08 PM (GMT -7)   
Sorry Ides that you got YET another thing to contend with! But if you have to go to the ER then you have to. It's not something we ever want to do. But you gotta breathe ya know? Hang in there and rant away......
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ivy6
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Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 10404
   Posted 2/21/2009 9:30 PM (GMT -7)   
Oh Ides, how horrible and tiring and frustrating. I hope yu can get on top of this soon.

Best wishes,

Ivy.
Co-Moderator Crohn's Forum.


Ides
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Nov 2003
Total Posts : 7077
   Posted 2/22/2009 12:54 PM (GMT -7)   
My update:
Spent a lovely afternoon yesterday at my large, overcrowded military ER. However, I guess I had underestimated the severity of my condition as I was immediately taken back to an acute bed. The resident listened to my lungs, read my typewritten list of my medical history that I carry in my wallet, and went and got his boss, one of the attending docs. After listening to my lungs, he proceeded to ask if I had ever been intubated for asthma before. This really got my attention! He said he hoped it would not come to that but they needed to treat me aggressively as my lungs were not moving air. Three nebulizer treatments of Atrovent and albuterol and 125 mg of Solumedrol IV had me shaking and all jittery but my breathing had improved immensely. I don't relish the though of what 125 mg of IV steroids is going to do to my bones but really there was no other option when one is having a severe, acute asthma crisis as the doc put it.

I had a chest xray, no pneumonia, and they made me walk the halls with a pulse oximeter measuring my oxygen saturation to see if I could maintain air movement. I passed and got to come home. They changed my antibiotic to a different one and said to see my PCP. Not like I hadn't seen him the previous two days. I must say that was the most efficient ER visit I have had in years. Immediate treatment and once improved, no waiting endless hours for the paper work to get completed. I guess this is one instance that being on immunosuppressants has a benefit - they didn't want me to hang around where there were so many sick people.

Thanks to all of you for your well wishes.
Moderator Crohn's Disease Forum
CD, Ankylosing Spondylitis, lupus, small fiber peripheral neuropathy, avascular necrosis, peripheral artery disease, degenerative disc disease, and a host of other medical problems.
 


Chartreux
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 9622
   Posted 2/23/2009 12:03 AM (GMT -7)   
Ides, I'm so glad you had a good ER visit and that they where able to help you, I hope
next time you won't hesitate, that if you need to go to the ER you should go. Could be
the weather triggered your asthma, this has been a wacky weather year, so cold up
North...
How did your PCP visit go? Give yourself time to get over your infection, so I wish
you can get a lot of rest...
Hope your feeling better soon, keep us posted!
Lots of soft hugz........
**********************************************
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******** "We could never learn to be brave and patient if there were only joy in the world" from Helen Keller *********

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SmurfyShadow
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 2386
   Posted 2/23/2009 12:15 AM (GMT -7)   
Glad your feeling better! I noticed I got seen quicker too when I mentioned I have a suppressed immune system. I think they realize we are more sicker than the sick when we're sick. Today I rushed my lil one to hospital, he been sick. Odd, I took him yesterday too. Got sent home, told it was a virus and to return if he got worse. Well, I call a fever spike to 104, no eating, barely drinking water or juice worse...so I rushed him back. He had bronchitis, like I told the doctor he had yesterday :S We stayed 6 hours trying to drop his fever in the ER. Still not broke, but down and finally home. Well take care hon.
 
Smurfy Shadow
 
DX: Wegener's Disease, Migraines, Diabetese Type II, PCOS, Lactose Intolerant, Benign Heart Murmer, Depression, Asthma, Asperger's Syndrome, Necrotizing Gramultous Inflamation in eye, A.D.D., Acid Reflux
 
Medications: CellCept, Prednisone, Tri Nessa, Percocet, Metformin, Prilosec, Protonix, Zantac, Advair, Cingulair, Albuterol, Calcium + Vitamin D

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