Cough finally getting specialist’s attention

I saw the pulmonologist today for the first time. And as I suspected, nothing definitive came from it. The high res CT scan that she ordered isn’t scheduled until Wednesday, so I won’t know anything until sometime after that. She also ordered a sinus CT to be done at the same time, since sinus drainage may be a factor. She asked a lot of questions and provided some answers. I provided a lot of answers and asked a lot of questions. Additional answers from her await the new scans. And she mentioned a possible bronchoscopy, which gave me a chance to explain how very unhappy I’ll be if it comes to that. She explained the procedure, if it should become necessary, but I’m still not going to be happy.

She did say I should discontinue the albuterol inhaler but continue the Advair. The latter is a corticosteroid and works with the prednisone that she wants me to keep taking.  She also wants me to keep working with the spirometer every day since airflow in my lungs is still somewhat compromised. Exercise resulting in a little huffing and puffing would work too. It’s sort of up to me to decide which method I want to employ. Hmm. Go for a walk or sit on the couch? Given the time of year, my money’s on the couch and spirometer most of the time. One way or another I need to exercise those little bronchioles (the tiny passageways that carry air to the alveoli, or air sacs).

She suspects bronchiolitis, based on the thickened bronchioles and mosaic attenuation pattern showing in the first CT scan. (She showed me the scan and what she was talking about.) The high res scan will show the pattern more clearly. I still don’t understand exactly how bronchiolitis differs from pneumonitis, but it doesn’t really matter; I just want the cough gone.

As far as cancer treatment goes — which, after all, is the subject of this blog — I’ve noticed no side effects from the Aromasin, although I’ve only been taking it since Thursday. I’m hopeful this will continue to be the case because such a tiny little pill really has no right to cause problems. And as before, the Herceptin treatment is still on hold pending resolution of the cough.


4 thoughts on “Cough finally getting specialist’s attention

  1. philosophermouseofthehedge Monday, December 07, 2015 / 6:13 pm MDT

    Coughing is exhausting. (And scoping?…wouldn’t be happy either. UGH) Hoping the sinus CT gives an easy answer.
    Oh, give up and walk the dog – indoors. My uncle in his 90’s at the time was ordered to walk. Dallas gets a tad slippery in winter ice storms, so brainy person that he was (and he was waaay up there in the IQ scale), he sauntered around indoors…if you went by that time of day to visit, you just had to walk along with him.
    (Besides screaming at the TV “news” people and throwing things at the set doesn’t count as exercise – although it should..gets the blood pumping?)

    • PiedType Monday, December 07, 2015 / 8:28 pm MDT

      I’ve contemplated just walking around the house. Couldn’t get much easier than just standing up and putting one foot in front of the other. I do that dozens of times a day anyway, so could just make each time a little more round about. Wouldn’t even have to worry about that “just get out the front door” thing, which is always hard for me. But this is a really small house (1100 sq ft). The view’s gonna get old real fast. (Doncha love how I always have an excuse?)

      • philosophermouseofthehedge Tuesday, December 08, 2015 / 8:17 am MDT

        Been there.
        My uncle lived in a retirement community unit which was even smaller .He knew the number of steps to the kitchen/bathroom/ bedroom which were luckily in a loop path..he added steps circling around furniture..I think the calculations/math tickled him. Then he added different music to get different pacing. Talk about getting exercised shamed by an old guy. Gotta love that. HA HA

        • PiedType Tuesday, December 08, 2015 / 10:57 am MDT

          Sounds like a wonderful man! I hadn’t even thought about music for tempo, pacing, etc. I was thinking about listening to the TV, but of course that wouldn’t do it. I can walk a very short loop from the living room to the kitchen and back to the living room through a different doorway. Maybe 20 steps, total. If I go down the hall to the bedroom, I’ll have to do an about face in the bedroom. But if your uncle found a way, maybe I can too. I just need some of his determination!

"You don’t have to say everything to say something." ~Beth Moore

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