Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Am I an Odd Duck?

You may be asking: "Why a red bell pepper?" My answer: "Why not?"
Okay, so yes I am an odd duck. The question is more if I am one within the asthma blogosphere. I feel slightly out of place as my asthma isn't as bad as many of the others around the net. I hover somewhere between controlled and not controlled. As of late more controlled than not controlled but still definitely not where I'd like to be. Based on what I can gather I'm a mild persistent asthmatic. I haven't officially been dubbed this by the doctor or anything. I might be considered moderate by my rescue inhaler usage. However, that is also probably partially the lack of control I've got at this point. I also know that I've got strong lungs from all the swimming I've done for years now. I know I've got really good lung capacity. Which could also skew the results of the PFT I had to do a month or so ago as far as predicted values. I know ultimately the label isn't everything and there is nothing to be lost from having good lung capacity. However, everything spirometry comes back normal, which makes me second guess whether or not I really have asthma. All these things have been spinning around in my head as I contemplate my appointment with Dr. B(the allergist) on Friday. Where I will probably end up on more meds to try to wrangle my lungs into submission. I just kinda wonder where I really fit in category wise and what that means for the med cocktail.


Anonymous said...

Hmm, I read this and it sounds SO familiar to me. Two odd ducks, then, and both computer scientists too!

Anonymous said...

Same here

But my doctors use medication requirement as the standard for measuring severity (as most of the severity by PFT results require you to be completely without any meds in your system), by which I'm either a bad moderate asthmatic or a mild severe asthmatic. I think I'm more a moderate asthmatic with bad allergies. Heck, maybe even a mild asthmatic with bad allergies. As my pulmo put it, if you can't get away from your triggers, your breathing is going to act up, regardless of how many meds you're on.

kerri said...

Hey, I feel the same way. I have "normal" PFTs but yet, I'm symptomatic more often than not, and my PFs drop when I'm symptomatic. But, remember, if you're NOT flaring when you have PFTs done, you WON'T "see" anything abnormal in the numbers, because most asthmatics have normal PFTs when they're not flaring.

In regard to the predicted values, I asked my pulmonologist about that, and what I gathered was they look at the raw numbers for the most part, and the predicteds are just there for a reference point.

In reference to Sarah's severity account above, I also have NO idea where I fit in to that.
But, this is definitely something I struggle with, and I second guess my diagnosis all the time.

Kat said...

The funny thing for me is that the worst I've been in the beginning I still produced an above predicted spirometry value. Go figure, the Nurse Practitioner thought it was all in my head... til she took a listen at my lungs... then it was more of a wait a sec how are you not blue/still conscious. Allergies definitely play some role in my asthma although how all the pieces fit together is still TBD.

Anonymous said...

my daughter has great PFT's, SOUNDS clear to most doctors, and yet has dropping O2 sats, and X-Rays that are called "white out" due to all the crap in her lungs...she also has CT scans that show air it's not all in my head, but casual exam makes some doctors THINK I'm crazy. You aren't the only odd duck out there.

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