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Allergic Asthma: Not responding to rescue or preventive inhalers

Hi everyone first post here... been on a research rampage this evening trying to get some answers.

My background as an asthmatic started when I was a child with fairly typical asthma symptoms that would go away with enough Ventolin and long term preventor inhalers. As I grew up my asthma basically went away... until about 5 years ago when I tested positive to dust mite and pet dander allergies. They were pretty mild at first, not even triggering asthma or respiratory symptoms. Unfortunately my symptoms got worse each year. At first they would would be intermittent when I was exposed to large amounts of dust mites or pet dander and I could make it go away with Ventolin. As time went on my threshold to allergen exposure reduced, and the effectiveness of Ventolin diminished.

Currently I almost constantly on varying degrees of chest tightness and shortness of breath. It's never at a level requiring immediate medical treatment, but it is still very miserable. The symptoms also no longer respond to Ventolin or long term preventor puffers.

When I did the lung function test it showed that I had good lung capacity and good blowing test results (IO forgot what that one is called) so the doctor just said keep going with the preventor puffers. This was 3 months ago and since then I've been steadily getting more sensitive to my triggers.

I'm scared because Ventolin is now doing nothing and that my symptoms is going to get worse and worse and I'm going to be in really big trouble in a few months time. Is there anything else I can try? I'm seeing an allergy specialist next week so I could ask there. I also got referred to see a new respiratory doctor but his waiting list is until Feb 2021 =((.

  1. Hi. mrfatbush Thank you for posting your asthma experience here. As you may already know, we are not allowed to offer medical advice over the Internet, for your own safety of course. And, also, asthma is a weird disease in that it affects us all in unique ways, and what medicine works for one person may not work for another. Thankfully, there are lots of great medicinal options worth trying (https://asthma.net/living/finding-medicine-types/) Usually, doctors will start with the treatment you are currently on. And it's also important to note that it may take some time for your current treatment regimen to gain full effect. This may explain why your doctor suggested continuing your current treatment plan. Although, it will be neat hearing what your allergist or respiratory doctor has to say. It may be a good idea to pose your question to these doctors, as there are definitely other options worth trying. As one example, there are biologics (https://asthma.net/living/what-biologics-are-approved-for-asthma/) that are helpful for some people with asthma. What do you think? So, hang in there. And please do write an update here to let us know what your doctor has to say or how you are progressing over time. All the best to you. John. Community Moderator. asthma.net

    1. Thanks for the reply John. Yes I will absolutely do that. I'll put my story up as well because my situation sounds somewhat uncommon and may resonant with other people too.

      1. Hi mrfatbush, and thank you for sharing your history and present circumstances managing asthma. I see my colleague, John, has provided a comprehensive reply and comments for you.

        It's good to hear you plan on seeing an allergist next week. Please do check back and let us know how this all turns out for you. I will wish you 'good luck!' with the appointment.

        We're glad to have you as a member of our online community!

        Wishing you well,
        Leon (site moderator asthma.net)

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