@Asthmagirl’s visit!

June 30, 2011

…..They have been travelling around the UK and Europe for almost 3 weeks, and found themselves in London…..

So what do you do when you’re in London, have trudged around the Tower and now have a spare afternoon/evening then?

So Mr and Mrs AG hopped on the tube and journeyed West to our suburb.

We talked in the house-discussing drugs, asthma and of course, our Chihuahuas (they have 3!!) We watched a bit of tennis-played with AB heaps-boy was that fun for her and us watching Asthmagirl down on the floor with our baby girl playing tuggie-tuggie with her new Nessie toy (which now needs a few stitches in it!)

And Julian did a great BBQ-loads of food, loads of smoke initially-but AG and I survived-no spurny lungs as we were both so full of fun and merriment that the adrenaline kicked in! (Spot the baby doglet in the photo!)

And Mr AG got to try a pint or two of English bitter for the first time…

And at the end of the evening after we were all thoroughly stuffed and they needed to travel back to the hotel for their last night in London, Julian whacked up a tripod and we all posed on the lawn, in front of my Grandma’s hollyhocks! (Thanks AG for the photo!)

(apology-don’t know how to enlarge the thumbnail thingie!)

So we took them back to Ruislip station and I know they got home quickly and in one piece as AG Facebooked me!

Here’s to my online friends-who I have now met in the flesh-everybit as adorable as I thought! Long may our friendship and our Chihuahua fun times continue.

…..and hopefully one day we will be able to visit them in Seattle too!…..


A Survey on Pred Dosage

June 25, 2011

…..In response to so many of us on Twitter discussing this recently, I’ve created a simple Poll….

Here are some facts about Drs and Pred in the UK (((in my experience of my Drs!)))

  1. 40mg at 5 -7 days is the norm but often up to 2 weeks may be necessary.
  2. Drs do not usually taper you if you have only been on a short burst as in 1. above.
  3. Consultants would rather you were on a constant low dose (oh hello!) to stem the need for multiple emergency bursts as in 1. above.
  4. Consultants do not think that there is any point in being on 50mg or even 60mg as it has not been proven to work any quicker, it is just that your adrenals may require it due to insufficiency.
  5. GPs often disagree with Consultants over 4. above!
  6. Consultants will tell you to bolus dose before starting a burst course but GPs have little knowledge of this.
  7. All Drs will tell you to take your Pred in the morning, as that is when your body needs it the most due to the natural drop in cortisol being around 3am.
  8. If you find you really are wired and cannot sleep, split the dose taking half am and pm .
  9. It is really best not to take it at night as your body’s needs for it are highest in the morning.
  10. Pred pills do not contain calories. They do not make you put on weight by themselves-although your thirst may be increased.
Also, if like me you have stomach issues, ask to be prescribed the enteric coated ones, then you wont have any sore tummy troubles.
Oh, and always take it with a little bit of light food, yoghurt, small piece of toast etc. (Cupcakes and Nutella sandwiches are of course the exception here!)
Julian Says: Does your Husband, Wife, Partner, Best Friend, Significant Other etc, have to hide the kitchen knives when you are on a Pred overload. Apparently I am now a fire breathing dragon. Hmmmm!

…..Feel free to add any other dosage info in the comments below….

Bolus Dosing

June 23, 2011

….Yesterday I had to bolus dose a huge amount of Prednisolone….

I’d been back at baseline-10mg-for around a month but I could feel lately, things have been getting quite twitchy with all the pollen and rain and humidity. Yesterday was an awkward lung day. I cancelled my Physio as I thought it would be too extreme: Autogenic Drainage plus the coughing and no point in deliberately coughing myself into another attack or spasm. So I contacted my Consultant to say I felt I was slipping and could I whack a big Pred dose. The email came back immediately saying to take a whacking great 50mg or 60mg depending on how I was after nebbing from my O2 concentrator-which is slow, but does boost the vitals. My Sats were not terrible, mid 80s on air, but went back into the low 90s after a couple of nebs at lunchtime. And although the tightness prevailed, I knew I was still heaving air and very uncomfortable. So at tea time I bolus dosed a whacking great 60mg, which bumped my oral Pred for the day up to 70mg!

I have had a weird night of drifting in and out of wild floaty dreams, whilst propped up in bed on 5L of O2. And I am now greater than thirsty! Drunk a huge amount of water through the night and was craving coke before that-hoping that the theobromide in it would boost my Aminophylline levels! I do feel a lot better and have definitely nipped this attack in the bud and done the right thing.

I’ve also been instructed to take a lunchtime dose of my Advair for a few days-this will put me 3 times over the limit for the LABA component. Sigh, dodgy heart rate and chronic shakes!

If the proof that I am going to school smiling as usual is not enough, I blew a 59% which is low yellow and therefore proves the Pred has kicked in. Still dodging a pants FEV1 of 0.8, but hey, that’s me!

Medical definition says of Bolus dose = “medication administered rapidly to decrease the response time”

….Well, I sure did the rapid bit and it sure has worked quickly….

Pets can reduce asthma (article)

June 18, 2011

…..From The Sun Newspaper….

GUINEA PIGS REDUCE ASTHMA: Children who grow up with a pet such as a guinea pig, rabbit or hamster are less likely to develop asthma or allergies, according to scientists.

US researchers studied a group of kids in New York and found that growing up in a less sterile environment could sometimes improve their health.

Researcher Matt Perzanowski said: “Being exposed to certain bacteria may give the child chance to build up an immunity.”

Read more here.

…..I certainly know that owning our dear little Chihuahua has been positively beneficial to both of us, healthwise…..

Obstructive Sleep Apnoea

June 15, 2011

…..Take this online test to see what you score, and whether you might be at risk from Obstructive Sleep Apnoea.

Click Here to take their Pictorial Epworth Sleepiness test.

The British Lung Foundation are running the test. I’m just interested to see how other asthmatics/chronic lungers score.

I do not have OSA, but do desaturate overnight so sleep with 3L O2. I scored 7. Julian scored 2. I am not a great night time sleeper but could easily drop off, most places, anytime during the day. I was relieved to find out I am only mildly at risk!

I’d be interested to hear how you all scored.

…..Please do take the test and post your score in the comments below!…..

12 of 12: June 2011

June 12, 2011

…. So here follows my series of 12 photographs taken throughout today, the 12th of June, 2011….

Gosh-I cannot believe that it is exactly a whole year since my Brother’s wedding to the lovely Dr Sarah. You can track back to that wonderful day and weekend, here.

This past month since May 12th has been warm, dry and exciting in the garden. All our veggies are doing really well with many of them now formed and the rest are in flower. All the roses are in bloom, and as we have not yet had the predicted hose pipe ban, I am still able to run the irrigation and water the lawns. Anna-Bell continues to flourish and brings us more love than we could ever comprehend. She is now 10 months old! Half term came and went and I am now 6 weeks away from the summer break. The long upwards slog!

It’s nice that with today being a Sunday, I am able to go to visit my Parents with AB-sadly Julian is working a late shift, so it’ll just be the two of us driving over to Elbury. I’m having tea there so am taking her dinner with me! However, annoyingly, it is pouring with rain!

Anyway, enjoy my day!

1  ) 6.45am AB and I went out to a cloudy morning spitting with rain. Our lawn is long, the gardener was due at 5pm yesterday but it rained in our slot so he didn’t come!

2   ) 8am I made AB her breakfast. Chicken, rice and kibble and we tried her with some mushy peas for the first time. 

3   ) 8.20am I went through the two heavy bags of yesterday’s newspapers. J brings them home from work. I am something of a newspaper-a-holic–always have been. We get them all, every day and have a lot of recycling at the end of the week!

4   ) 10.30am I had to do some mending. AB dismembered the legs off Ducky, an arm and a leg off Teddy and ripped through Donkey’s neck with her piranha teeth!

5   ) 11am Sadly no walk today-pouring rain across the south of England……((and AB has now chewed the eyes off her Ducky so out comes the mending basket again!))

6   ) 1.00pm Packed up Julian’s dinner for his evening shift at work-I made us fish and chips today! And we found out doglet likes those mushy peas!

7   ) 3.15pm Arrived at Elbury to visit my Parents. Mum made me GF scones with lime curd and a lovely cup of Lady Grey tea.

8   ) 4.00pm Doglet was quite happy playing inside, and settled in with one of her new raw hide chews, on the warm rug.

9   ) 4.45pm Took AB round the garden before tea and took a few photos whilst we were out there in the wet…..

10   ) Mum’s little wildlife pond-complete with Newts and water lilies.

11   ) The Elbury garden.

12   ) 5.30pm My high tea. Smoked trout. Yummy!


((8.35pm: AB and I are home now-the Canadian Grand Prix is still waiting to be restarted))

Hope you’ve enjoyed my diary day, 12 pictures taken on the 12th of the month.

Night, night from us here, and see you next month!

….If you’d like to read other bloggers’ 12 of 12′s, go to Chad Darnell’s Blog.

“Killer Pollution in London is coming from the Continent” (article)

June 9, 2011

…..I just read this article in yesterday’s Evening Standard newspaper…..

I have printed the article below:

Toxic pollution is blowing across the Channel and harming Londoners’ health, MPs were told today. On unusually high pollution days, up to four fifths of a dangerous pollutant seeping into parts of the capital and the South-East may be from overseas. The alarming warning came from a leading environmental health expert. Professor Frank Kelly of King’s College, London said: “A large proportion of the PM2.5 (particulates) associated with loss of life expectancy in the UK arises from neighbouring countries.

“The UK should press for significant reductions in emissions from neighbouring countries and in turn should commit to similarly significant reductions in its impact on other countries.”

Professor Kelly estimates that between 3,000 and 5,000 people a year in the capital die early because of pollution. Some will have had their life cut short by up to 10 years. The worst particulate pollution is normally from traffic in London, especially diesel-run vehicles, or from heating homes. But Professor Kelly told the Commons environmental audit committee that a “secondary” source is created by power stations and industry. Easterly winds blow this air pollution from the Continent into southern England.

“Long-term exposure to this type of air pollution underlies many of our chronic diseases and results in people dying earlier than they should do,” he said. “The EU needs to tighten controls further on these pollutants emitted from power stations and industry.” Labour MP Joan Walley, who chairs the environmental audit committee, said: “Londoners are entitled to clean air and we’re going to be fighting their corner on this neglected issue. “We know that the UK and other EU countries are breaching safe limits of particulate pollution from cars, lorries and power stations.”

…..Rather alarming for those of us who live in London, isn’t it…..