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Terri Martin, Volunteer Mentor (@windwalker)

How is everybody doing?

MAC & Bronchiectasis | Last Active: Sep 20, 2017 | Replies (153)

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Great news for you, Terri……. congratulations. My last four sputum tests have been negative but….. I cannot see or learn that there was any further culturing for MAC or any other really bad bacteria. I’m wondering if the initial testing is negative — that that mean there’s not much chance of MAC being there or something would show up in the 24 hour tests? Does anyone know the answer to this.

Also, my primary care has been insistent I have a pulmonologist closer to home. Rochester is 10 hours from here. So…… he made me an appt with one and I saw him yesterday. He did extensive breathing tests and concluded I have asthma. Sent me home with an inhaler which I used yesterday evening and have had a headache ever since. I’ve never noticed anything in my life that made me think asthma —- just horrid coughing with phlegm. No shortage of breath. Mayo’s (of course) did breathing testing when I was there two years ago and they didn’t mention asthma. This “closer to home” fella says I have only 55% lung function and if it drops to 45% it will be COPD. I’ve no experience with this…… I’m 76 years old and am wondering what the normal lung function percentage is for someone in my age group. Can you give me any info?????

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Replies to "Great news for you, Terri....... congratulations. My last four sputum tests have been negative but..... I..."

Hi Jan. When were those last sputem tests you had done? I am not saying you don’t have asthma, but I was told for years that I just have asthma; when in fact, I had bronchiecstasis. Did this new local pulmonologist do any sputem test on you?

No….. but I was able to give him a lung scan done two weeks ago and he could see bronchiectasis in lower right lobe. I had seen this guy back in 2010 before I even thought about going to Mayo’s……. at that time, again…… he called it asthma and gave me inhalers. He has a good reputation and personally, I do like him, but I am just perplexed about the asthma. He also wants to start a program of 250 mg daily for 12 months of azithromicin……… he feels I should not have an episode more than once/twice yearly. That would be great — incidentally, he was quick to say I did not have bronchiectasis in 2010……. and I’m sitting there wondering how he knew that — he didn’t do a sputum test or a cat scan. He did an x ray and breathing tests and said asthma. Of course the cough continued and after many years, I finally went to Mayo’s.

My Mayo dr said for me to never take azithromycin because it is one of the BIG GUNS. He said he did not want me to become resistant to it and then if I were to get sick in the future and nothing else worked, then we could fall back on it. It sounds like your dr put you on that as a preventative measure. I was on a similar regimen with doxycycline and ciprofloxacin for three years. Now mine is tobramycin and cipro. Doctors seem to have different theories on how to treat people. Sometimes it comes down to a ‘Suseptability Test’ which shows what antibiotic will work.

Thanks much for your knowledge and input

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