Just Diagnosed Emphysema
Hello…I am a 66 year old female just diagnosed with "predominant upper lobe emphysema" yesterday via CT chest scan (done on 10/17/2018). I was having a year follow-up scan for a perifissural lung nodule (which hasn't changed in 2 years so no more follow-ups). On the last scan there was no mention of emphysema. Right now (and when I had the scan on 10/17/2018) I have an allergic flare-up. Nasal passages completely closed, throat hurts and congestion in right upper lung. This started about 2 months ago when I sneezed all night and then my nose started pouring. Then it totally closed up.Lung congestion apeared about a day later. I only had a cough for the first couple of days then it went away. The nasal and lung congestion are still present. Phlegm in upper throat as well. Since there is no cough I have to hack up the phlegm from my lung. I have made my self pretty sore doing this.The sinus issues are almost overwhelming. I went to my primary care physician on 9/28/2018 and my temp was fine at 97/9, O2 saturation at 99%. Blood pressure 121/70. She listened to my lungs and said she didn't hear anything. I just had blood work done right before that visit that showed my eosinophil % at 6.1. She said that was a little high and to take regular Zyrtec because I had allergies to something. I cannot take decongestants because I have paroxymal AFib. It has done me no good. I cannot get air through my nostrils. The AFib makes it hard to take anything to clear this up. The only thing that seems to help a little is store brand Mucinex. Could these issues have caused it to look like I have emphysema? I am so scared. I am a super anxious person diagnosed the Generalized Anxiety Disorder so you can imagine what seeing this on the test results has done to me!! I will admit that I still smoke…a few a day. I feel so guilty and horrible that I may have hurt myself like this. But my daughter died a year ago (10/21/201) and trying to quit would have been so hard. I am still in horrendous grief and sadness at her loss.
According to the scan it looks as if I have no other lung issues. Could this illness (allergy) have caused some kind of misreading? Maybe asthma?
I would like to not here that I have never had a smoker's cough. Smoked a lot of years, though.
Thanks so much for reading my story and whatever insight you can give.