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*Harmony*

I think I saw on a nest thread that you had an asthmatic child.  J, I assume?  Can you tell me what treatment you use?  How often?


O has asthma and I feel like we are struggling with it.  I'm constantly weighing the cost/benefit ratio of using pulmicort every day vs just on particularly bad weeks.  It's also frustrating because he still can't identify when he's having an attack and treatment is delayed.  Anyway, I'm interested in hearing another parent's perspective.  I don't know anyone else with a child with asthma.

Re: *Harmony*

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    Hey -

    Yes, Joseph is asthmatic.  He is on Pulmicort almost every day for maintenance  and Xopenex for rescue.  We have gotten pretty good at listening to his breathing to know when we need to do a rescue treatment.  Any time we even think he is breathing funny, we do the Xopenex.  My BFF's 10 year old is asthmatic and was diagnosed about 4 years ago, so we've had some experience learning to pick up cues.

    We let the Pulmicort go for a few weeks and he got a virus that put him down for 2 weeks because viruses are one of his big asthma triggers.  I felt horrible.  We have been able to identify some other triggers - smoke being a HUGE one for him.  He did a couple of sparklers at New Year's and watched some fireworks in the driveway and was down for three weeks.  Again, I felt terrible.

    I find it to be incredibly stressful.  I feel like I am constantly watching for a flare-up.

     

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    Thank you!  Is Xopenex different from albuterol?  I haven't been convinced that albuterol is always helpful.  We've found the pulmicort to be most helpful but I hate the idea of him being on a long term steroid, especially because he can go months without a flare if he isn't sick.  

    I'm not as good at identifying a flare because I have trouble hearing it.  Does Joseph obviously wheeze?  Is there some trick to it?  We just in the past year made a connection between his behavior and flares.  He gets irritable, complains about being tired, and overall is just a bear.  But even then I suck at realizing it.  He had an off day on Saturday, to the point that I checked his temp because I thought he might be sick.  It wasn't until he sat next to me on Sunday morning and I could hear him wheezing that I realized he'd been having asthma all weekend :-(.  He was a whole new person after treatment.

    Back in March we started allergy meds every day and he went until this weekend without a flare.  I had hoped we'd discovered the "cure" but clearly not.  I don't know any other triggers than allergies and viruses.  He has really bad eczema as well so he's clearly sensitive.

     I feel even more incompetent because I have asthma and take pulmicort every day along with a rescue inhaler.  I feel like I should be an expert or something but it's obviously easy for me to identify my flares vs O.   

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    The Xopenex is levalbuterol and the Pulmicort is budesodine.  I hate J being on steroids long term too, but his doctor is determined that it is the best course of treatment. 

    As for identifying the wheeze, I am not really very good at it, but I can tell by how he is breathing if he is struggling.  I'll do a Xopenex treatment and can tell a difference right away.

    I haven't been doing daily allergy meds (doc just said the OTC stuff was fine) because he seems to be doing much better with the allergies, but when he starts having asthma flare-ups, I add in the allergy meds to help.

    Sucky bus here - he just came down with Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease, so I am pretty sure we'll be battling asthma for a few weeks. My poor boy.  I know he isn't feeling good when he says,  "Mama, do treatment."

     

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