LENNY PUTS ME IN THE HOSPITAL, LESSONS LEARNED
By Mr. William
“A person without good breathing, is a person with a life of constant caution, so let’s do what we can, to learn what we can, to improve what we can.” (Will Dursens)
“Not a happy camper….lung/oxygen issues puts me in hospital for first time ever…..”
That was my line that posted on my Facebook page COPD Travels on Tuesday evening, close to 48 hours ago after being admitted to the hospital due to an inability to keep my oxygen from falling below 90%.
I came home late Wednesday afternoon after being pumped full of steroids and several extra breathing treatments. Released after making my required six-minute walk around the hospital hallway without my oxygen numbers dropping and straying below 89, in fact the respiratory therapist said my oxygen only dropped to 87 once and 88 twice and only for a few seconds.
Granted, the six-minute walk still whooped my ass and for me I felt like I had walked a couple of miles, though my step checker only showed maybe 600 steps.
After a chat with the doctor, signing off and going through lots and lots of paperwork and reading material – they let me sign out and my wife brought me home.
By the way – best part of coming home, was the joy, abundance of excitement and a large amount of kisses I got from my Maltesse puppy buddy, Frosty Lou.
Lenny (the name I have given my COPD disease) decided it was time to apparently give me a wake up call to the fact that I need to be more careful and pay closer attention to the signs of how quickly triggers can change my daily routines.
For several days leading up to Tuesday I knew I was beginning to have issues with my breathing, or at least I thought it was my breathing.
Since I also have a heart condition, I sometimes have to be extra careful as to my own personal assessment to what I may be feeling, especially when it comes to anything in my chest area.
I was noticing issues with a deep steady tightness in my left chest area just below my breast bone for a couple of days after I would walk too quickly through the house or chase the dog more than a couple of rounds down the hallway. The pain wasn’t a sharp hurtful pain, but instead was as if I pulled a muscle or someone was pushing their thumb down on the area.
Sad part was, much of the time when I would get that feeling, my oximeter would tell my that yes my heart rate was racing along at around 90-95 beats per minute, but my oxygen never seemed to drop below 91%. So each time I would take a moment of timeout and just concentrate on my breathing and relaxing, letting the stress out of my system for a few moments.
By early afternoon on Tuesday I found myself with a much deeper feeling and out of breath without much of any movement at all – time to cave in and call the doctor or go to the emergency room.
To the emergency room we went and thankfully they ruled out a heart attack rather quickly, but did share a major concern for my oxygen level even as I laid there in the ER.
With an overnight stay ahead of me I consented to the doctor’s request, so I spent Tuesday night in a very stuffy hospital room on third floor.
By nine o’clock I was so pumped full of steroids and a few other meds that I soon found myself unable to get to sleep due to a heart racing along at 95+ beats per minute.
To make my story shorter, from the time I arrived in the ER Tuesday afternoon until the moment I was released around 3:30 p.m. Wednesday afternoon, I received three helpings of predisone/steroids, four breathing treatments, three blood tests, three blood sugar tests (all of which were out of wack due to all the steroids) and many, many blood pressure checks.
I was ready to come home and reevaluate how I was going about things, especially at this time of the year when our part of the country was getting so much humidity.
My constant companion ‘Lenny’ gave me a solid kick in the rear reminder that I need to work harder at trying to stay ahead of my COPD disease instead of just rolling along in a ‘I am fine today’ type of mode.
I now know that during times when triggers are extremely strong, like hot, very humid days, I may need to find the time to take more than one breathing treatment during the day.
I now know that my rescue inhaler (Xopenex) should be consider one of those steps in my treatment routine instead of only being counted on for extreme serious moments.
I now realize that yes, after some seven years since my diagnosis, that my lungs are moving forward with the disease and this is now what it is like when having a full fledged exacerbation, one strong enough to land me in the hospital.
I now know that despite my oxygen numbers not getting low enough, long enough (as it was explained to me) that we should still probably consider purchasing some type of oxygen generating machine, preferably a portable unit, to have on hand for the next time that ‘Lenny’ decides to get pissed off and try to throw me to the mat with my breathing.
So, now that I have been home for a little over 24 hours, I have been a very good subject as I have taken all my meds on time and have taken two breathing treatments today. Plus, I made sure I spent at least 10 minutes working on some breathing and relaxation exercises, something which I honestly can’t remember the last time I did.
While I know many of my faithful readers and friends within the greater COPD/Asthma/Chronic Illness groups have had much worse and often hard bouts with their disease – I also must mention how humbled I was for the countless voices of concerns and prayers passed on to me the past 48 hours from the many groups I share with, I am truly blessed to have a caring community of folks willing to be accountable and available to help others like me who sometimes just feel like they are winging it until the winging it doesn’t stop the problem.
One more thing, I realize again the importance my writing can be to others and will again push myself to be more reliable on my postings and writings about all and everything involving COPD, Asthma and living with a Chronic Illness.
Thanx again for all the well wishes, concerns and prayers – each and everyone were very much appreciated.
A REMINDER – Do you have any comments or questions about my postings, then feel free to leave a comment on either at this blog, at the email address of firstname.lastname@example.org or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/copdtravels/.
ALWAYS REMEMBER (because I have COPD and severe Asthma) – If you or anyone you know have any symptoms involving lung and breathing functionality, and they linger over and over while disrupting a lifestyle – then please ask questions and get it checked out.
With that, I bid to all – smiles, prayers, blessings and steady breathing – Mr. William.
(Copyright@2020, CrossDove Writers through wheezingaway.com – no part of this write may be used or copied without written permission.)
NOTES: Sometimes we share what may seem like medical information, but we are only giving descriptions and highlights of various aspects of having COPD and/or Asthma and no way do we ever want our information to be considered medical treatment type of information, always consult your physician for more, clearer medical founded information.