I have just been diagnosed with copd. It was tuesday. I started off with a cold which quickly went to my lungs and then I got scared as my breathing was just horrible. When I first arrived at the clinic, he was going to send me to hospital but then after a treatment, my oxygen level went up to 92 so he let me go home with a prescripiton for ventolin inhaler and antibiotics. The next day I felt pretty good. Got up and was able to do a few things. On Thursday, I didn't feel as well and by evening ended up having an anxiety attack and nearly went to hospital but the paramedics identified this, again my oxy level was at 92, so i took an ativan and felt better. Today, I feel sort of the same way...trying to keep calm, wondering what my oxy level at etc. Does any body out there have anything similar to this type of feeling.....i feel pretty depressed.
Sounds like you had another atttack of broncitis. It is OK --- you will be fine. But why is your oxy going down so low - do you have asthma? How old are you? Don't be depressed - you will get better. Are you a smoker?
I do get shortness of breath sometimes - but I have emphysema - did the doctor say anything about emphysema to you ???
I feel great - but I have been diagnosed with emphysema with lung nodules through a CT Scan......
I so understand and can sympathize with how you are currently feeling. When you are told you have a disease such as COPD, it just does not seem quite real I know. I have been there. I was diagnosed with moderate COPD in Oct. 07. I went to my family doctor with some kind of simple health complaint. Can't even remember now what it was. Then, I happened to mention to my doctor that I sometimes had a tightness inmy chest and shortness of breath. Next thing I know I am being given a chest xray and a breathing test. Then, was given the diagnosis of COPD. I felt many emotions for quite awhile...denial, shock, anger, depression, etc. And mainly I was just plain scared.
When you are short of breath, it can sometimes bring on a panic attack. Struggling to catch your breath is a scary thing. And depression can be part of any disease. It is very depressing to know you have a disease. If the depression persists, you might want to talk to your doctor about this. There are antidepressants that can help ease that. Plus, ativan is good to calm the panic attacks. I take valium and it helps during the panicky times for me, too.
With my COPD I have good days and bad days. I have learned to pace myself according to how I am feeling. But, I am 2 years into diagnosis and I have a number of good days. Two years into diagnosis I have learned to accept this lung disease that I have. But, it did take me some time to get to this point. Hopefully you have a good pulmonary doctor that will work with you. Plus, make certain you eat healthy, remain active as much as you can, at the first sign of a chest cold or upper respiratory infection go to your doctor so he can prescribe you an antibiotic and try to avoid people as much as possible that are ill with colds, flu, etc. And stopping smoking if you smoke, is the best possible thing you can do for yourself. Honestly, I am still struggling with the smoking, but I pray to get to a quit one way or the other. I cannot lie about my smoking, eventhough I know it is the dumbest thing for me to be doing at this point.
But, I am very sorry that you are having a difficult time dealing with the COPD. I understand though as I have been there. There is life with COPD. I am up and about functioning everyday. I cannot do some of the things I once did, but I have learned to accept that. It just takes time. I am battling my second disease. I had cancer 20 yrs. ago. I survived that. Then, when I was diagnosed with COPD, I was very let down and upset. I thought I already battled one disease. In time when you get your bearings and have time to deal with your diagnosis, it will get better for you emotionally and mentally. Until then, I am wishing you all the best. If you ever need to ask questions or just get on here and vent, then MedHelp is an excellent place to come.
You guys are both awesome for caring and sharing! There are many similarites I see with all three of us. I don't know why my oxy level is was at 92. The Dr. seemed fairly comfortable with this. I am a smoker and disgusted as I am, even now, cannot give it up totally. I think this is causing me great anxiety as I thought I was a stronger person. Oddly enough, I was going to giver quitting a go this winter again. I also think I am just plain scared, which you had felt as well julieben. I went to the clinic thinking o.k, here we go, my annual chest infection. I will get some antibiotics, sleep for a day for 2 and good as new. Not to be. That was another question I had. How long will I feel wrung right out. I slept until 6 p.m. today and wide awake now but so weak, tired, and general feeling of yick. I do feel better reading these posts. Very encouraging. I am 52 and already fighting depression/fibromyalgia. I know it could be a lot worse so I have to stop feelinjg sorry for myself and put this in perspective. Thank you both again, and may we keep in touch?
Since this diagnosis followed on the heels of a respiratory infection you should not be too sure that you have COPD. The symptoms came on suddenly which doesn't sound right for that disease. Wait until the other symptoms subside and get tested again.
How are you doing? When I got my CT Scan results in May I quit smoking within a week. You definitely need to give the cigarette up. Go to a support group - find out what options you have in your area with help to quit smoking. Quitting smoking will help you so much.
I had another CT Scan this week - no changes - which is good - means the nodules they found in May aren't growing.
My family doctor (who I saw today) said I should be on some special type of inhaler for the rest of my life so my lungs don't get worse. I have documented moderate emphysema :(. I didn't know there was such an inhaler to keep the lungs from deteriating?
I don't sleep well - I am always tired, and have suffered from panic/anxiety attacks since my 20's. But overall I am doing OK. The doctor has given me some prescriptions for sleeping pills but they stop working after a few days - LOL.
Let me know how your doing Lindy. Please keep in touch :)
Just read your posts. Thank you. I will definitely get retested. Now I think back to the diagnosis, it did seem like it was made extremely "fast". Still, copd does run in my family. The smoking, wow. I have cut down from 20-30 cigarettes to 10-15 per day. I know I have to quit and I try every day but.....is cutting down significant at all...I have not had another panic attack since. I used to take medication daily (clonezepam), but had weaned off of it. That was an experience in itself....Thanks guys, keep me posted on your health. It is good to have you to vent with as unless you have or no some body who has a breathing problem it is difficult to explain.
How did you get diagnosed with COPD - did you have a lung CT Scan done? If you in doubt please have a CT Scan done which will let you know if you truly have COPD .
Let me know if you have had a CT - in any case please Quit Smoking....... The cigarette is not your friend - especially if you have COPD - I cut down too - to 10 cigarettes a day - still have emphysema - 10 cigarettes a day!
This forum is a great find, finally some people to share notes with. I can relate to both of you and what you're going through since I'm right there too. It's odd how panic attacks are mentioned so often, I also started having them in my 20's and I too was put on clonazepam. I want to get off of it since it comes with a warning for older folks so sometime I'd like to talk with you about that Lindy.
I also still smoke, here comes excuse # 327, but I'm under severe personal stress right now and it scares me to think about giving them up at this time. I even use a drag from a cigarette to help the new HFA inhaler to get to my airways since they've taken out the propellant.
I've had a very slight breathing problem most of my life but now I'm 6 years into being classified as having COPD. Btw, I don't know any of your ages but several medical personnel have told me that as you get older, everyone has a small amount of emphysema due to the environment.
My main question to two specialists has still gone unanswered. When I first sought help I had all the tests including x-rays and Ct Scans and 6 years later my tests all come out the same as when I first noticed that my breathing had become a problem. However, my condition now is much worse so why isn't something showing up on these tests? The doctors don't have an answer for me. I bought myself an oximeter and when I'm struggling for air after exertion my oxygen saturation can be as high as 94. That doesn't make sense to me.
Lynnkay was right about staying away from people who are sick. I learned the hard way and ended up in ICU twice. Before this I rarely got sick.
There are two things not mentioned that have helped me. Someone mentioned that the problem is really not being able to exhale all the air out and as an exercise my doctor has me blow up a balloon. It takes me about seven blows to inflate a 9" balloon and it takes my husband only three. After practice I can get it down to four. This has reminded me that I haven't been doing that exercise lately.
It's been great reading your posts and knowing there are others willing to talk about this COPD condition. All of you stay well
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