i am so, so scared. i went to have surgery last week and the dr cancelled it because my O2 sat level was too low. i saw a wonderful pulmonologist today. my O2 was 84 (which is higher than when they took it before surgery- i think it was in the 70s then, not sure). she said "you're not going home" and sent me straight to the hospital. she said i'd get the chest catscan there so that if i needed to be admitted i'd already be there.
fortunately, i didn't have to be admitted today and they sent me back to her office. no cancer or blood clots thank god. she's putting me on oxygen 24 hrs all weekend and steroids. then i will be hospitalized monday and pumped full of steroids and i don't know what else until my lungs are strong enough for her to put me under anesthesia and put a tube down to test them and find out what's going on. i smoked for years but quit recently.
i have a preexisting problem with anxiety, and even on my valium i've pretty much been having an anxiety attack all day. i'm so incredibly terrified. have any of you been through this or something similar? any words of advice? i am so scared.
What other symptoms do you have? Do you get short of breath? As a former smoker, you most likely have emphysema or possibly COPD or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (also called chronic bronchitis sometimes) but I'm just guessing the two most likely suspects. Try not to let yourself get too anxious because anxiety can effect your breathing too. Try taking nice, slow deep breaths and purse your lips when you breathe out. This will help any SOB you may have and should help to calm you. Lack of oxygen to the brain can make you feel anxious and panicky. The oxygen supplementation should help you to feel much better! Dont worry about the procedure. You wont have any recall of it because they will give you meds to sedate you and you will have no memory of the test even if you are not fully "out" during the procedure. Is it a bronchoscopy that you are having? They can take a little peek into the lungs to see what is happening. I havent had one done to me but I have witnessed lots of them. Most likely your symptoms will then be controlled with medications to open up the breathing tubes and you may need to continue with the O2 (oxygen)-possibly just as needed. The medications may be inhalers or pills or a combination. They may also give you a nebulizer for breathing treatments. Once you O2 sats are back up, you should feel much, much better with more clarity of thought and better energy. The fact that they sent you home rather than keeping you is very encouraging! Dont worry, you will be fine and soon it will be over and done! You might talk with your Dr to see if perhaps they can raise your anti-anxiety meds briefly to get you through the time before the test. Try not to think about it as much as possible-keep yourself distracted with other activities whenever possible. Good luck and keep us posted!
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