Posted 4/17/2014 1:42 AM (GMT -6)
I hope someone in this community can give me some good advice.
I am 41 years old and have been suffering recurrent chest infections for the best part of 10 years now. I did smoke some cigarettes in my twenties (maybe up to two packets in total). I did live with some heavy smokers for about 18 months in my mid twenties and unfortunately copped a fair bit of passive smoke.
Over the last 10 years I have experienced 2-4 chest infections every year and it really drives me nuts. I see a sleep and respiratory physician (I also have sleep apnoea) and when I describe my issues as a major problem, he corrects me and says it is a problem. To him I am probably insignificant when you consider that he is telling people that they are going to die on a weekly basis.
However I am not prepared to do nothing and want to do anything I can to try to improve the situation. I have recently taken some advice that I need to take a probiotic every day and that I should do this for months to come. With all the antibiotics I have taken my gut has sustained some damage to its immune function.
Over the last six months my focus has been on some reflux issues that I have experienced for some time. Based on this I had fundoplication surgery about 8 weeks ago as there was concern that some of my stomach contents were refluxing into my chest which may be contributing to my recurrent infections. I did get an infection about a week ago which I am still treating. This may be as a result of the surgery or residual reflux from pre surgery (I had chest pains on and off since my surgery until the infection presented).
One thing I can say that is a positive from the surgery is that breathing through my nose is now clearer than it has ever been, so I guess that is a positive sign.
I really won't know if the reflux was the main factor or if there are other issues, but after experiencing issues for so long I need to know what others do to try and improve their situation.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.