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Finally going back to pulmonologist- what to ask, tests, diagnosis?

Finally having my second pulmonology appointment since August. My adult onset asthma started in July. My pulmonologist and I didn’t click, so I switched to an allergy/ asthma doctor. She was a tad crazy and unhelpful when I really needed her. I now have a great new allergy/asthma doctor. He has helped me through a couple minor  exacerbations and really listens.

He was about to say – “maybe it isn’t asthma, since it’s still bugging you, you still have the cough and main meds aren’t working.” I interrupted him and said, that’s not true! I had an asthma attack start while dancing, when I stopped and used the albuterol it helped the shortness of breath and coughing and I felt better soon after. Also, when I used prednisone earlier in the year a couple of times, that’s what improved the breathing and coughing. Even other co workers were telling me I needed more help and after I got the prednisone I was sooo much better. So, the doctor said, in that case, he sticks with his diagnosis of severe asthma. 

Tomorrow, I see a new pulmonologist (because I’d already made that appointment before I found the new asthma doctor). Are there any suggestions about tests I should ask about? Diagnoses? Medicines?

i am currently taking Breo 200/25- 1xday, Qvar 80mcg- 4 puffs xday, chloropheniramine 1-2 xday, and albuterol as needed (about 3-5 times a week or more). 

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  • K8sMom2002

    Good luck with the new doctor! 

    I'm not sure if your "tomorrow" is actually today, Friday, but if you haven't already seen the doc yet, could you prioritize your questions by having the three most important ones to you ready to ask first?

    AAFA's resource can also help you. They have a great " as well.

    And I'm so glad that there are things that help and improve your situation, and that you have a great allergist that is working with you!

  • Shadowcat04

    I saw the new pulmonologist, asthma doctor number 4. I was very impressed. She read up on my case ahead of time, she listened to my asthma story, she kept asking if I had more questions. She listened to my lungs normal, except after a few listens she asked if I needed to cough. I said, yes- how did you know? She said she could here it, it was “twitchy”. She said that it sounds like I have “very sensitive asthma”, difficult to treat. That I have probably been underdosed, so I’ve never quite been symptomless. I told her how cold weather, low air quality, smoke and viruses have affected me and that prednisone helped. She thinks I’m someone who is going to need prednisone to treat and not wait to do so. She wants me to call her within 24 hours if my symptoms change in the list. She said we’ll really need to work together. Amazing!

  • LK

    Shadowcat,  Sounds like you have found a wonderful new doctor!!  So happy for you!!  Hope the new plan of attack really helps!

  • K8sMom2002

    Oh, my goodness! I doctors who understand twitchy lungs! So glad you had a good visit. I'm hoping a good solid that meets your needs will help you get your asthma firmly under control.

  • Shadowcat04

    Yes, definitely so far so good. Today I’m back for the “Full PFTs”. No maintenance inhalers (Dulera) or albuterol this morning and no caffeine. I’m on day 7 of prednisone (so, 30 mg. a day). I noticed the “improvement in symptoms” went down a little after going from 40 to 30 mg. I’ve taken the qvar about once a day and still doing the  Antihistamine at night. Been having some nausea and stomach upset- Dulera or prednisone, not sure? 

    Not sure what the next phase holds, but I feel more hopeful. It was a long journey to get here, that’s for sure.