COPD Panic Attacks: Getting harder to leave the house

Posted by carolannz @carolannz, Mar 7, 2019

It's getting harder by the day for me to leave the house. I've had Emphysema for over 20 years and live alone now. I have medication for anxiety and panic but so often I find an excuse or way to not leave the house. I don't like to drive but when I get going I'm okay if it's familiar to me. I worry about getting the flu because I feel it would be the en of me. I get exhausted fighting with myself just to meet my family for lunch. I do not want to go out after dark. Help

Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the COPD: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease Support Group.

@maryball5122– Hello and good morning. You are an inspiration. Although I don't get panic attacks I have had them and they are horrible. I thought that I was dying and actually went the ER. Fear is very debilitating, especially if it hits out of the blue. We need to be kind to ourselves, rest, eat healthy foods, exercise and stay close to loved ones. I am on antidepressants and have no plans at all to get off of them. They have been a blessing. The idea of needing medicines is not a bad thing. I think that we are all fortunate that we have what we need and want. Thank you for chiming in. Hope that you continue to relay your successes so that we can learn more on how we can manage our lives!

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@carolannz

@merry I think the shortness of breath and anxiety feed off each other until I feel unable to do anything. I do see a pulmonologist. I use a nebulizer twice a day, Spiriva . My oxygen is at 4 now. I have been reading about Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. I am seeing that what goes on in my head when I feel anxious is part of the problem. I might have to push myself to go and not let the fear get me.

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@carolannz What is oxygen 4 mean? Do you use oxygen, do you check it daily, what does it usually run? I believe control of our emotions will help our health and let us live longer……….Jeanette in Fl

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@girlbybay

@carolannz What is oxygen 4 mean? Do you use oxygen, do you check it daily, what does it usually run? I believe control of our emotions will help our health and let us live longer……….Jeanette in Fl

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Jeanette I;m on oxygen 24/7. My oxygen machine is set on 4 as my dr prescribed. I think you are right about emotions. I get fearful of doing things especially the first time and I know I will get very short of breath which you know is so uncomfortable. So I find any excuse I can to not do it. I know I have to push pass that bad habit

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Request comments or information to assist with COPD anxiety attacks due to shortness of breath/oxygen

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@jamesfkruntorad

Request comments or information to assist with COPD anxiety attacks due to shortness of breath/oxygen

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@jamesfkruntorad– Welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect James. I am a mentor for Connect's lung health and cancer groups. I have had lung cancer since 1997 and probably COPD for as long. I do understand what you mean and have felt the same when trying to JUST breathe. It's very scary to inhale and not have it work the way we expect. I would like to ask a few questions so I can help you further.

Are you seeing a Pulmonologist and has he educated you on what to expect and prescribed inhalers? Do they help at all? When were you diagnosed? Are you on O2?

To help start you off, when you feel panicked the first thing that you need to do is slow your breathing down. If you can, sit down. Lean over slightly, with your elbows on your thighs, and just breathe slowly..inhale, exhale. Do this until you feel your chest relax and so that you can breathe more easily.

This happened to me twice while embarking from a plane and believe me It shocked me and I couldn't breathe. The second time it happened I knew enough to slow down and wait and I just inhaled and exhaled very slowly. I held up a whole line of people trying to deplane, but what the heck, I needed to breathe!

Can you try this?

Merry

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I can't fealall your pain just a little since I have copd for just 8 months. Since everyone is different I have read wear some copd cases like mine is emphysema life expectancy is not much longer then 5 yrs. If I can get an extra 20yrs. I would be thrilled beyond belief since I'm 65 yrs. Old now that would be great. We all have to keep fighting .least you have family to support you .I know this isn't much help I'm not ashamed of my Christianity I definitely will be praying for you GOD loves you!

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@kozmo

I can't fealall your pain just a little since I have copd for just 8 months. Since everyone is different I have read wear some copd cases like mine is emphysema life expectancy is not much longer then 5 yrs. If I can get an extra 20yrs. I would be thrilled beyond belief since I'm 65 yrs. Old now that would be great. We all have to keep fighting .least you have family to support you .I know this isn't much help I'm not ashamed of my Christianity I definitely will be praying for you GOD loves you!

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@kozmo– I have had COPD with emphysema and I'm still alive after 23+ years! You are correct that everyone is different. How has yours been treated?

@jamesfkruntorad– You both might be interested in our COPD group. https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/copd-emphysema/

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@merpreb

@jamesfkruntorad– Welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect James. I am a mentor for Connect's lung health and cancer groups. I have had lung cancer since 1997 and probably COPD for as long. I do understand what you mean and have felt the same when trying to JUST breathe. It's very scary to inhale and not have it work the way we expect. I would like to ask a few questions so I can help you further.

Are you seeing a Pulmonologist and has he educated you on what to expect and prescribed inhalers? Do they help at all? When were you diagnosed? Are you on O2?

To help start you off, when you feel panicked the first thing that you need to do is slow your breathing down. If you can, sit down. Lean over slightly, with your elbows on your thighs, and just breathe slowly..inhale, exhale. Do this until you feel your chest relax and so that you can breathe more easily.

This happened to me twice while embarking from a plane and believe me It shocked me and I couldn't breathe. The second time it happened I knew enough to slow down and wait and I just inhaled and exhaled very slowly. I held up a whole line of people trying to deplane, but what the heck, I needed to breathe!

Can you try this?

Merry

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I am seeing a pulmonologist, educated n inhalers? I use trellogy once a day and buterol inaler as required, I use O2 upon retiring

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@jamesfkruntorad

I am seeing a pulmonologist, educated n inhalers? I use trellogy once a day and buterol inaler as required, I use O2 upon retiring

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I use that one too, it's very good. Have you gone online at all for videos that show how to handle panic attacks and anxiety attacks exercises to calm them down?

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@merpreb

@kozmo– I have had COPD with emphysema and I'm still alive after 23+ years! You are correct that everyone is different. How has yours been treated?

@jamesfkruntorad– You both might be interested in our COPD group. https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/copd-emphysema/

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Right now my doctor has started me on ANORA 2 MONTH PERCRIPTION along with Albatros sulfate is my emergency inhaler I have 12 days left on my anoro I haven't had to use my emergency inhaler yet. I'm at the ymca I can barley do 4.1 for 25 minutes on the treadmill. I'm also planing on quitting the ANORO after my 30 days is up. My breathing test came back very good you know how this works good days bad days. What is your opinion about trying to quit THE ANORA after my 30 day prescription is up?

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