This has been a question l’ve asked any number of healthcare professionals. rather frustratingly, all I’ve been told is “You’ll know when you get one”! Unfortunately when I did get one it was early into lockdown and COPD couldn’t have been further from my mind. All the symptoms seen to point towards Covid-19. An ambulance was called by a very panicked wife. The first thing the paramedic asked was had I considered that I was having a flare up. Thank God COPD flags up on any calls to the ambulance service. I felt somewhat foolish especially when he asked why no-one had told me what to expect. To date, I’ve now had four flare ups, they seem to go in five week cycles, my Dr is now on speed dial and is always ready to issue a repeat prescription. Has anyone else had similar experiences? And to those yet to have a flare up.........BE PREPARED,!!
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D'you know, you are absolutely right - sometimes a good old fashioned cuddle is exactly what we need! What you didn't really need was me preaching to the converted! You've been there and done it all - but, of course, I didn't realise that when I answered you.
Do you have a consultant you can speak to? Mine rang me during the first lock down as I was due an appointment and we were on the phone for nearly an hour. I have another phone appointment booked with him for the end of this month and saw the respiratory nurse at my surgery for a face to face appointment last week, so they are still working despite the lockdown and it felt good to see someone face to face (albeit mask to mask!) and I found the appointment very helpful.
I hope you are starting to see some improvement from taking all the pills and potions. I'm guessing you've had a sputum sample sent off. I was surprised the other week when mine came back with a result that required a change of antibiotic. The reason I was surprised was that it was (in my opinion) not a very helpful looking sample as it was so much cleaner looking than usual. It just goes to show you can't always tell by looking at the colour - or at least, I can't!
Hope you feel better soon! x
Hello! I've just seen your post. Can I suggest you go to the British Lung Foundation site https://www.blf.org.uk/support-for-you/copd/flare-up is just one of their helpful pages. They have a lot of brilliant information they can offer you.
You mention 'a lot of health care professionals' but have you seen a respiratory consultant or a respiratory nurse specialist? If not, it sounds as though it might be useful to ask for a referral to one. Also, you can get a lot of helpful info from Pulmonary Rehab. These people should all be able to help you better than being told, 'You'll know when you get one' as that's just rubbish, in my humble opinion!
In my experience, it's still easy to miss an exaccerbation. I've recently recovered from one that took months to creep up on me. It took three courses of different anti-biotics and steroids to shift it but at last I feel well again! I was very slow about going to my GP as the gradual decline led me to believe it was my 'new normal' and a deterioration in my condition. I was wrong and won't be making the same mistake again!
I don't think you need to feel foolish about calling the ambulance service. Better safe than sorry! I'm glad you didn't have COVID.