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Are mild exacerbations a sign of worsening condition?

Sorry, been a long time. I am specifically asking for help from emphysema folks but also very much interested in input from the site therapist. Try to make this short. Up until about six weeks ago I walked at least three miles each day. This greatly assisted me in removing mucus. Over last three weeks I have suffered like never before getting mucus up. Some from sinus after netti pot would fill a Kleenex to overflowing. Other times all hacking and coughing so bad it would bring me to my knees. Huff coughing helped very little. No fever, mucus foul gold to light brow n to sometimes the normal light yellowish. Third day of emergency dose of antibiotics and low dose prednisone. Hacking still lousy for about an hour this morning. First exacerbation several months ago seemed different. See pulmonologist next Thursday. Is there common items to look for? Is mild exacerbations a sign of worsening condition? Has my couch potato mode these last several weeks obviously made things worse? I was diagnosed a little over a year ago. Have albuterol inhaler as needed, Breo but not taking by mutual decision with pulmonologist and no supplemental oxygen. Anybody have any advice or answers. Am looking at salt based nebulizer supplied mucus removal but only after doctor Thursday.

Community Answers
  • Janet Plank moderator
    1 month ago
  • Janet Plank moderator
    1 month ago

    Here is a link on COPD and exacerbation

  • Janet Plank moderator
    1 month ago

    Hi Brucifer,

    How are you getting along now? What did you learn from your doctor?

    This question that you asked, really stood out to me. “Has my couch potato mode these last several weeks obviously made things worse?”

    Exercise is one of the most important things that we can do. Ask what kind of exercise your doctor recommends for you. Exercise keeps your oxygen flowing. This is what fuels your body and keeps your organs functioning and alive. This can also help to slow the progression of your disease. Even on the days that I feel so sick, it’s so important to get up and walk, stretch and wiggle, yes wiggle, I try to do this at least hourly. What do I wiggle, my fingers and toes, they are the distal (most distant) parts of the body. They also help to bring up your oxygen levels.

    Coughing at times can be so difficult to manage. I’m unable to take most cough meds, so the doctor has written me a prescription a gel tab. It’s important to drink plenty of water, for coughs, as well as your overall health. There are meds to help with mucus as well, you can ask your doctor of pharmacist for their recommendation.

    It’s so important to realize that some medications, including over the counter and herbal meds should not be used while taking other meds that you are on.

    Salted nebulizers should be used, only will approval from your doctor. Sometime back I had searched this, as others were asking about it. Salted nebs were originally used by those with CF (Cystic Fibrosis). In some cases with COPDers, there were complications.

    Please be aware, we will always refer you to your doctor, since he or she is the only one who knows all about you: your history; medications; allergies and everything else. We can only share our experiences and knowledge.

    Do come back again, let us know how you are doing.

    Janet (site moderator)

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    2 months ago

    Hi Brucifer and welcome back – glad to have you participating on our website again. You probably are aware we cannot provide medical advice or diagnostics over the internet (for your own safety). All the questions you have asked can most certainly be addressed by your physician in the context of your recent history. Of course, staying as active as is feasible goes a long way towards managing this condition as you well know. It’s good to hear you’ll be seeing the pulmonologist this coming Thursday. I’m hopeful you will learn much more about your current condition during that visit. Please do check back and keep us apprised of the results of your appointment. Wishing you ‘good luck!’. Leon (site moderator)

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