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Okay, I am IN!

cindi o'h

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Dear Cindi,

I too am coming in very late to this -- glad to hear there's no cancer, sorry about the asthma...but that's really treatable.

I developed asthma about 10 years ago -- very minor at first. Had a few wheezing attacks, got handed a ventolin inhaler which I took when I had an attack, and no real problems. Then a year or two later, it got worse; I remember being on vacation up on the Cape and not being able to stop the wheezing. Got back home, and after the doctor gave me a breathing treatment, he put me on theophylline, which once again did the trick. Then about three years ago, after a bout with bronchitis, I couldn't get rid of the wheezing, so they put me on advair...and once again it worked until I had another bout with bronchitis and couldn't get rid of the wheezing so they added singulair. The money I was spending on these medications alone makes you gasp for breath! I was also on prednisone for a while and eventually the attacks eased...and then this past winter, after one more bronchitis attack, I realised that I wasn't really wheezing anymore. After six months without an attack, I stopped the singulair, then two months later I stopped the advair, so now I'm just down to the theophylline...so far so good. I've recently recovered from a cold, which a few years ago would have automatically gone into bronchitis, and this time I came through without it. So you CAN get better. The medication is a godsend, expensive though it is, when you need it...and I'm proof that you can actually get better and cut down on it. I' have been walking and exercising (good old Curves) on a regular basis, but I was doing that all along so I can't credit that for anything.

Anyway, just wanted you to know that you can lick this thing...or just live with it if you have to. Good luck -- and let us know how you're doing!


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