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Friday, 23 June 2017

Latest updates - HBA1c , COPD

When I was diagnosed with Prostate cancer I remember reading an article that said that if you overcome the cancer then you had to watch out for your heart and diabetes.  The problem I have found is that you end up with a catalog of problems that leads to a spiraling decline in your health.

My COPD has had a significant impact, am really struggling at the moment to breath and using my inhalers a lot.  I have also had multiple exacerbation's in the past two months that have led me to having to take anti biotics and steriods. Am certain the steroids have had an impact on my weight and as a knock on to my blood glucose levels.

I have completed pulmonary rehabilitation and now have just completed 12 weeks of fitness4life at the gym in Telford&Wrekin. These are supervised cardio-respiratory sessions. Am about to sign up for a membership to continue these as I have to get my exercise under control to enable me to breathe easy. But also this has to be done to fight my weight and help with my diet.

Have just had my annual blood test for HBA1c as I am high risk for Diabetes. Last year it was 46 (2016), this year (2017) it is 47.  I have already been suffering foot sores that could have been really serious. I am getting numbness in one foot and toes. I was hoping with the work in the gym and cutting down on various foods that this HBA1c would have gone down not up. So I am in the pre-diabetic range.  Diet and exercise is the only way forward. Its hard work with having COPD.

I have been given a Peak Flow meter for the COPD so I can measure my flow to see what my best is so i can detect when i am bad and heading toward an exacerbation. On a good day i am scoring 350 to 400 on the meter. A healthy person my age and height should  be in the 600s. On my bad days and currently with this heat and pollen / air quality I am scoring 250 if I am lucky. Lots of blockage in my lungs.

I dont seem to be improving. Time will tell however.  If I can do more exercise. My FEV1 was 53% , hopefully i can make improvements in the next 6 months so i dont drop below 50% into Severe.

Until the next update....

Breathe Easy everyone

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

COPD and Bronchiectasis - what is it all about

So my blog started about my prostate cancer. This seems to have been the catalyst for problems to start that I have never had before.

People have bucket lists of what they want to do before the die. I seem to be starting to collect a bucket list of illnesses.

Considering that until about 2012 with the cancer diagnosis i had hardly been ill in my whole life and hadnt had an admission into hospital, all that has changed.

I feel like I am a car thats starting to fall to bits.  I have a dressing table full of medication , tablets for the morning, tablets for the evening, tablets for bedtime, tablets for those special times .  Give me a shake and I probably rattle.

So, this post, COPD and Bronchiectasis. C.O.P.D. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease , an umbrella term for multiple diseases that impact breathing.  The British Lung Foundation have lots of info at https://www.blf.org.uk/support-for-you/copd .  Bronchiectasis is where the lungs get damaged - http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/C/Pages/Introduction.aspx

It seems I have both of these. In October 2016 I was told by my GP after having a spirometry test that my FEV1 or lung function was 53%.  I have just had a further review, Feb 2017 and been told that it is now 2.06 or 54% so roughly the same.  Since october I have had access to a Ventolin Inhaler and also an inhaler called Spiriva. The Spiriva is a preventer which slows down deterioration of my lungs, minimizing what they call exacerbation's or flareups that can cause more damage.  I have also had my flu jab and a pneumonia jab. The fact that my GP got me on these has probably arrested potential deterioration of my lungs. Now as a COPD patient I am also undertaking Pulmonary Rehabilitation which will also help me,

Am a little disappointed as it seems that back in march 2015 the hospital did spirometry tests on me.  Those results shown in the graphic below would seem to indicate that I had COPD back in 2015  - but no one told me about it. It also seems that at the same time the found that I had Bronchiectasis.
Well at least now I am under monitoring and treatment for these conditions.  I have read lots of good advice on forums that say i should be able to live many years managing this condition. There does have to be some drastic lifestyle changes though, diet, weight, exercise.

4 Years on - Cancer Free - PSA still undetectable

For those following the blog I had my PSA tested before Christmas 2016 and I am still cancer free, my PSA being undetectable at below 0.01 with the ultra sensitive test.  Agreed with consultant to continue to take the tadalafil and sidenafil for ED . Am continuing to attend a monthly support group that is fabulous as we can talk through the mental impact of this surgery/cancer that still plays on the mind. Does tend to get me down a lot what has happened at my age. Tend to keep thinking about it.

Other issues to worry about now though as I have problems with my breathing that they have finally confirmed as COPD.  So its, get over cancer and now fight the fight to keep my lungs working.


Sunday, 30 October 2016

COPD and left Paralized Diaphragm

The night before I had surgery for ulna nerve decompression and transposition plus carpal tunnel I had phone call from GPS.  My latest spirometry confirmed sitting lung function of 53%. He has diagnosed me with stage 2 COPD. This on top of my raised left hemi diaphragm and left Paralized Diaphragm makes it tough to breath especially walking a while. Cpap helps a lot at night. Ventolin doesn't help enough so he has put me on Spiriva 18 Mcg daily.  All this gave a huge problem the following day as I was having surgery at the Nuffield and it doesn't have all the right facilities if I had major respiratory failure. I have been told now by my anesthetist to have future surgeries at nhs or facilities with such care capability.

Spoke to my ortho surgeon and he said I need to see specialist about the diaphragm.  The degeneration c3 c4 c5 may have caused this as that it where the Phrenic nerve is that controls left and right diaphragms.  Have already lost my left. Don't want to lose the right .

Will update blog when I find out more.

In meantime. Now have slow recovery from ulna nerve surgery.

Wednesday, 26 October 2016

4 Years On since Surgery

Well its 4 years now since my surgery and time for my PSA test. Its going to have to be delayed until November as I have to have surgery.

Those problems I had with my neck and nerves following the Prostatectomy have come back. A new MRI was done and electrical tests. The MRI has shown I have problems from C3 to C7 , also I have problems in both arms and hands but my left arm is the worst. Before they can look at doing anything with the neck and C Spine I have to have Ulna Nerve Decompression of the left arm and Carpal Tunnel of the left hand. This is taking place this week.

So PSA will have to wait a few weeks.

This has also got me thinking and doing a lot of reading. I still have the paralysed left diaphragm and no one has explained what has caused this. All they have said is its not Lung cancer. However I am now reading that Phrenic Nerve damage can cause this - that's in the neck. Also compressed nerves caused by secondary cancers can cause this. The MRI didn't show cancers but I will mention all this to my specialist when I see him next month - it did make me think about the Perineural Invasion of the Prostate that was on my biopsy, but this would be hugely rare at 4 years post surgery.  Also going to have a word with GP about this - I sense a visit to a respiratory consultant. Am concerned that the degeneration of the spine has got worse in 4 years. If this is the phrenic nerve and then the other right nerve gets impacted then I will be in a medical emergency scenario breathing wise. Not too good. Need to get to the bottom of it all.

Life goes on.

Monday, 30 November 2015

If i was a Car

So if i was a car and i had a problem my owner would take me to the garage, explain the symptons, diagnose the problem and fix it. 

I am a human body, a more advanced car. My owner has read leading whitepapers from respected research institutes. My nhs gp treates me like a primary school child.

Totally fed up with nhs primary care in UK. Need private primary care and then i can sue if they.get things wrong.

Monday, 16 November 2015

3 Years Cancer Free

Results of my ultra sensitive PSA test is in today and i am still undetectable. That is 3 years cancer free. Discussion about Statins and Heart meds impacting Libido and Sexual functions. Going to speak with GP about possibility of changing statins. Maybe diet change will help.