Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Take a deep breath and blow as hard as you can

Meet my new toy.

Mr Peak Flow Meter.

A while ago I got another chest infection, about my 53rd of the year. I got a chest infection over a year ago and things never seem to have really cleared up. I’d be feeling ok in my self, but if I cleared my throat I sounded like a barking seal pup. Then, every time I did get a bug or a cold it would flare up again and I’d be hacking away like a 50-a-day smoker.

I got bored of it in the end so when the last cough started I took myself off to the Drs, a place I rarely go because they are the most depressing places on earth.

I was given yet another course of antibiotics and sent for a chest x-ray to get to the bottom of things.

When I got a call to say the chest x-ray was clear I was obviously relieved, nobody wants gunk in their lungs, but also a little disappointed because that meant I had no proof something was wrong with me.

I always feel very guilty when I walk into the Drs surgery with something that isn’t tangible. I worry that I’m going to be labelled a hypochondriac. So the prospect of having to go back to the Drs and say “Look I know this x-ray says my lungs are fine, and right at this moment in time I’m not sick at all, but when I cough it’s really nasty, listen....” was filling me with dread.

But I got a nice Dr who let me jabber on about my lungs for a gazillion years before scratching his head (he really did!) and handing me a cool little tube, telling me to blow in to it as hard as possible. I did so, which resulted in a coughing fit which secretly pleased me because he got to hear it without me trying to find subtle way to cough during our conversation.

And he came up with a somewhat surprising possible diagnosis.

I could have asthma.

Which is weird I think. I mean I know I get out of breath on the treadmill but that’s just because I’m grossly unfit. I’m not a wheezer, I just have a cough.

So he sent me away with Mr Peak Flow Meter and instructions to puff into him first thing in the morning and last thing at night and record my results on a cool little chart for 2 weeks and then come back to see him.

It’s great fun.

Although also frustrating. I’m supposed to be able to blow up to 500 and so far the highest I’ve gone is 420. Even the boyfriend is better than me and he’s a smoker (was, was, was a smoker, as of 1st January 2010). I’m not the world’s most gracious loser. In fact I’m a terrible loser. So bad I actively avoid playing games because I know that as hard as I try I’m not going to be able to disguise the fact that I’ve just lost a game.

But I do like joining the dots together a ruler to make a cool graph.

We’ll see what the Doctor says in 2 weeks...


P said...

Oh dear! Hope you don't have asthma, that would suck!

Florence and Mary said...

I hope that you find a solution to your problem.

My friends currently despairing at her doctors, she's had asthma since she was a child and when she went to the doctors yesterday they had no record of it!!!

Victoria xx

The Curious Cat said...

I was once told recently that I might have asthma too due to my allergies and things...I get a tight chest around cats...I did have it as a child so...? I want a special tubey thing to see what I'm like! Hope you don't have it though...but if you do - well then you know what the prob is and you can tackle it! xxx

Boomka said...

So let me get this straight. You get sick so your doctor says he wants you to do physical activity AND math? Wow. I would just stop going to that doctor, he sounds like a quack. Get better.

Anonymous said...

Oh no! Well at least you might find an answer, which would be better than not knowing. Plus graphs ARE fun.

Hah look at me, I'm commenting.


Petit Filoux said...

that's good!! Well at least they're trying!! I hate going to the doctors, a bit for the same reasons, because it never seems like I've got something straightforward, and they only ever give me paracetamol (oh thanks for that, I'd never thought it would cure the whole world's ailments!), which to be fair, is fairly rubbish at solving anything but mild aches and pains. Asthma, I wouldn't have thought of that, that's funny. Like you say, I associate more with wheezing. and why would it suddenly appear (well you know, a year ago)? Although to be fair, a friend of mine found out she had asthma when she was on a trip in south America, and she'd never had any trouble before. it's a weird one! Two weeks isn't long to wait until you find out at least!

Thanks for your advice by the way! Charities are on the list of things to check out. if only someone could say to me, hey I've got this great job for you, the pay's decent and you'll enjoy every minute of it, that'd be frigging awesome!! Only that wouldn't be the real world would it?!! Argh!!!!!!! About the business thing, I was thinking of opening a folksy shop maybe. but I'd have to get myself organised first!

Ps I'm SOOOOO glad I'm not the only one to pig out on crisps!! Makes me feel not so bad after all! And tonight, well tonight I'm back at the gym for a class - first one for over a month. it's gonna hurt, I can feel it already! said...

I actually have very mild asthma, so I kind of know how it feels to have a bad chest. I couldn't blow very high either. So if we have a game of who can blow the highest, you may just win!
suzie xxx

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