(MAC/MAI) MYCOBACTERIUM AVIUM COMPLEX PULMONARY DISEASE/BRONCHIECTASIS

Posted by Katherine, Alumni Mentor @katemn, Nov 21, 2011

I am new to Mayo online .. I was hoping to find others with .. MYCOBACTERIUM AVIUM COMPLEX PULMONARY DISEASE (MAC/MAI) and/or BRONCHIECTASIS. I found only 1 thread on mycobacterium accidently under the catagory “Lungs”. I’m hoping by starting a subject matter directly related to MYCOBACTERIUM AVIUM COMPLEX PULMONARY DISEASE (MAC/MAI) I may find others out there!

I was diagnosed by a sputum culture August 2007 (but the culture result was accidentally misfiled until 2008!) with MYCOBACTERIUM AVIUM COMPLEX PULMONARY DISEASE (MAC/MAI) and BRONCHIECTASIS. I am now on 5 antibiotics. Working with Dr. Timothy Aksamit at Rochester Mayo Clinic .. he is a saint to have put up with me this long! I was terrified of the treatment . started the first antibiotic September 3, 2011 … am now on all 5 antibiotics for 18 mos to 2 years. Am delighted at the very bearable side effects!

I wrote on the 1 thread I found: If you google NON-TUBERCULOUS MYCOBACTERIUM AVIUM COMPLEX PULMONARY DISEASE (MAC/MAI) you will learn a LOT about the disease. But PLEASE do NOT get scared about all the things you read .. that is what I did and nearly refused to do the treatment until after a 2nd Micomacterium was discovered! Educate yourself for “due diligence” .. but take it all with a grain of salt .. you are NOT necessarily going to have all the terrible side effects of the antibiotics! Good luck to you!

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
January 2017 Update

One of our great Connect Members .. @Paula_MAC2007  .. had a wonderfully helpful idea that I wanted to share! Her idea .. as you read through the pages to gather information on our shared disease of MAC you can develop a personal “file cabinet” for future reference without the necessity of reading all the pages again!

If you have the “MS Word” program on your computer:

  1. Document Title Example:  Mayo Clinic Connect MAI/MAC Information
  2. Then develop different categories that make sense to you such as:  Heath Aids .. Videos .. Healthy Living .. Positive Thinking .. Baseline Testing and Regular Testing .. Antibiotics ..
    Tips for
  3. As you read the pages .. copy/paste/save things of interest into that MS Word document under your preferred categories for future reference.

Then as you want to refer back to something in the future .. YEAH!  You have now created your own personal “file cabinet” on MAC/MAI!  Go to it!

KateMN

@jennifernicole

Many of the people posting on here seem to know more that some of the doctors I have encountered. Can anyone share what evidence of MAC/MAI on a cat scan includes? Is it nodules, ground glasz opacities, tree in bud (all things on my report but not sure if that is consistant). I was diagnosed witj MAI through lavage washings but i don’t know if it is the reason I am having issues or whether whatever issues i have been having made me vulnerable to the MAI …

Jump to this post

Hi @windwalker, I was told last September, during a hospitalization, that I indeed have bronchiectasis. Then at Mayo, their interpretation was that I have bronchmalacia, not bronchiectasis. But my local pulm disagrees. Like I said, I have 5 doctors that disagree & we just had a new pulmonologist do a bronch this past Wed. to collect yet more lung washing for culture. So I am very confused on what is what & what is best to do. For now, I guess I will just sit & wait the 6 weeks for the culture report.

When I was at Mayo, we tried to get the three consecutive days worth of sputum specimens at God early time in the morning. The last day I ended up in respiratory failure & ended up admitted to the hospital at Mayo. And when trying the high concentration saline nebs, I still wasn’t able to bring up the mucous! I rarely can. That’s why we resort to doing bronchs so often…to clean out all of the mucous in my lungs that I can’t expectorate & to obtain washings, instead of mucous, for culture.

And some of the bronch washings that were negative for MAC, they believe could have been because I was on antibiotics that they use to treat MAC when I got the bronch & they collected washings for culture… interesting. I don’t know what to think! ~Jen

REPLY
@jentaylor

Hi all, it’s Jen Taylor, I haven’t been in touch with you via “connect” for 2 months. I was seen at Mayo in Minnesota over a 2 week period. I received so much info from all of the evaluation. I have been overwhelmed & scared & I have been trying to process all of this on my own. It hasn’t been going to great so I’m trying to reach out & thought what a better group to talk to than others who are going through similar life experiences. After have a positive MAC culture from my bronchial washings, I was told that I had MAC & need to be treated. Previously (Sept. 2016) they diagnosed me with bronchiectasis. Nothing was seen on my CT scan or X-ray that showed the colonies seen from MAC. One of the big reasons I was going to Mayo was to get an expert opinion from Dr. Askamit. After Dr. Askamit read through my many, many, many records over a course of 10 years, since I first got sick, he concluded that at this time I may have MAC but it should not be treated at this time because it does not appear on a CAT scan. I must tell you that I was shocked by his response as it was completely different than my pulmonologist locally. And to be honest, I seem to have met the criteria to be considered to have MAC & to start treatment. I have many underlying illnesses & it’s so hard to sort out what is what. Dr. Aksamit said to wait until it is seen on a CT scan. I have very mixed feelings about this. I am concerned that I should just wait until I become more infected to start treatment. Personally, I’d rather treat it BEFORE it gets worse. I guess I’m the only one who things that. My local pulmonologist changed his mind & decided not to start treatment at this time. Don’t get me wrong, I do NOT want take all of these meds that can cause such grief & danger!!! I also don’t want to just sit around & wait for things to get worse!!! Am I wrong in thinking that?? I value your opinion. Oh, and I have had the bronchiectasis diagnosis since Sept 2007 based on CT scan but now, when Dr. Askamit looked at a different CT scan, he said he didn’t see that. I’m SO confused. I know one thing to be true…I’m in a mess of a health situation with multi system dysfunctional & disease. I am sick every day of my life for 10 years now & without an underlying diaganosis of what disease I have in the lungs. They said I would not make past 2 years but here I am, 10 years later, alive & trying my absolute best to lead as much of a normal life as possible…mostly for my family. I’m back to a point where I am requiring supplemental oxygen again. I had been able to breath on my own for the past 3 years. What changed? We don’t know. I go into respiratory failure several times a year resulting in hospitalizations. We still can’t answer the question of why my lungs don’t convert oxygen from the air I breath in??? Anyway, I apologize for rambling on. I have been so withdrawn & sad, scared & lonely since receiving all of this new information. I also learned I have stage 1 heart failure & other metabolic syndrome that leaves me as the “perfect storm for a cardiac event” as the physician stated it. I ended up at Johns Hopkins a couple weeks ago with an excellent cardiologist who is trying to help my sort things out. My weight is a contributing factor to my alveolib hypoventilation &
We discussed having the stomach sleeve procedure to help me loose weight. There is so much on my mind & I apologize that I just rambeled on without even diving the long note into paragraphs!!! That’s just how my mind has been lately. I am in NO way trying to ask for self-pity…I’m just trying to get through my reality of day to day life the best that I can & with the most quality that I can. I’m just so confused right now. Oh, I had another bronch done on Wed. & we sent the washings for culture & this will probably be the ultimate testing to see if the washing show positive for MAC. We won’t know for 6 weeks! Again, I welcome your feedback… thanks for taking the time to read this!

Jump to this post

Hi Terri M, your post seemed just fine to me…no worrries! Today was so frustrating… I spent the whole day battling with my blood sugar to make the blood sugar lower with no avail! For the last 2 weeks my blood sugar has been out of control with super high numbers that I have never had in all of my 10 years of having steroid induced diabetes! No matter if I give myself a very high amount of insulin & then barely eat any sugar/carbs, it’s still high, high, high!!! I’ve been sweating like a pig from it all day! I’m too embarrassed to go out because the sweat just pours out of me! I absolutely hate having diabetes especially when I have no control at all over it! I just feel like it is flaunting it in my face that “it”, my diabetes, wins today & I loose, despite my healthy choices to reduce my blood sugar numbers. Anyway, I will stop venting now! Thanks for your kind words! Much love, Jen

REPLY
@jennifernicole

Many of the people posting on here seem to know more that some of the doctors I have encountered. Can anyone share what evidence of MAC/MAI on a cat scan includes? Is it nodules, ground glasz opacities, tree in bud (all things on my report but not sure if that is consistant). I was diagnosed witj MAI through lavage washings but i don’t know if it is the reason I am having issues or whether whatever issues i have been having made me vulnerable to the MAI …

Jump to this post

Hi Kathi, I must say that your words are very inspiring, especially considering your age! I love it!!! Much love, Jen

REPLY
@jennifernicole

Many of the people posting on here seem to know more that some of the doctors I have encountered. Can anyone share what evidence of MAC/MAI on a cat scan includes? Is it nodules, ground glasz opacities, tree in bud (all things on my report but not sure if that is consistant). I was diagnosed witj MAI through lavage washings but i don’t know if it is the reason I am having issues or whether whatever issues i have been having made me vulnerable to the MAI …

Jump to this post

Hi @jennifernicole, Stay strong! You will be in my prayers today!!! Much love, Jen

REPLY
@jentaylor

Hi all, it’s Jen Taylor, I haven’t been in touch with you via “connect” for 2 months. I was seen at Mayo in Minnesota over a 2 week period. I received so much info from all of the evaluation. I have been overwhelmed & scared & I have been trying to process all of this on my own. It hasn’t been going to great so I’m trying to reach out & thought what a better group to talk to than others who are going through similar life experiences. After have a positive MAC culture from my bronchial washings, I was told that I had MAC & need to be treated. Previously (Sept. 2016) they diagnosed me with bronchiectasis. Nothing was seen on my CT scan or X-ray that showed the colonies seen from MAC. One of the big reasons I was going to Mayo was to get an expert opinion from Dr. Askamit. After Dr. Askamit read through my many, many, many records over a course of 10 years, since I first got sick, he concluded that at this time I may have MAC but it should not be treated at this time because it does not appear on a CAT scan. I must tell you that I was shocked by his response as it was completely different than my pulmonologist locally. And to be honest, I seem to have met the criteria to be considered to have MAC & to start treatment. I have many underlying illnesses & it’s so hard to sort out what is what. Dr. Aksamit said to wait until it is seen on a CT scan. I have very mixed feelings about this. I am concerned that I should just wait until I become more infected to start treatment. Personally, I’d rather treat it BEFORE it gets worse. I guess I’m the only one who things that. My local pulmonologist changed his mind & decided not to start treatment at this time. Don’t get me wrong, I do NOT want take all of these meds that can cause such grief & danger!!! I also don’t want to just sit around & wait for things to get worse!!! Am I wrong in thinking that?? I value your opinion. Oh, and I have had the bronchiectasis diagnosis since Sept 2007 based on CT scan but now, when Dr. Askamit looked at a different CT scan, he said he didn’t see that. I’m SO confused. I know one thing to be true…I’m in a mess of a health situation with multi system dysfunctional & disease. I am sick every day of my life for 10 years now & without an underlying diaganosis of what disease I have in the lungs. They said I would not make past 2 years but here I am, 10 years later, alive & trying my absolute best to lead as much of a normal life as possible…mostly for my family. I’m back to a point where I am requiring supplemental oxygen again. I had been able to breath on my own for the past 3 years. What changed? We don’t know. I go into respiratory failure several times a year resulting in hospitalizations. We still can’t answer the question of why my lungs don’t convert oxygen from the air I breath in??? Anyway, I apologize for rambling on. I have been so withdrawn & sad, scared & lonely since receiving all of this new information. I also learned I have stage 1 heart failure & other metabolic syndrome that leaves me as the “perfect storm for a cardiac event” as the physician stated it. I ended up at Johns Hopkins a couple weeks ago with an excellent cardiologist who is trying to help my sort things out. My weight is a contributing factor to my alveolib hypoventilation &
We discussed having the stomach sleeve procedure to help me loose weight. There is so much on my mind & I apologize that I just rambeled on without even diving the long note into paragraphs!!! That’s just how my mind has been lately. I am in NO way trying to ask for self-pity…I’m just trying to get through my reality of day to day life the best that I can & with the most quality that I can. I’m just so confused right now. Oh, I had another bronch done on Wed. & we sent the washings for culture & this will probably be the ultimate testing to see if the washing show positive for MAC. We won’t know for 6 weeks! Again, I welcome your feedback… thanks for taking the time to read this!

Jump to this post

Hi @boomerexpert, wow, what insightful words of wisdom! Thank you for pointing out that yes, anger is exactly what I am feeling right now (along with feeling depressed, which I have a long standing history of) & that it is normal, justified & by looking at it that way, you can see it & name it more clearly! Thanks! Much love, Jen

REPLY
@jentaylor

Hi all, it’s Jen Taylor, I haven’t been in touch with you via “connect” for 2 months. I was seen at Mayo in Minnesota over a 2 week period. I received so much info from all of the evaluation. I have been overwhelmed & scared & I have been trying to process all of this on my own. It hasn’t been going to great so I’m trying to reach out & thought what a better group to talk to than others who are going through similar life experiences. After have a positive MAC culture from my bronchial washings, I was told that I had MAC & need to be treated. Previously (Sept. 2016) they diagnosed me with bronchiectasis. Nothing was seen on my CT scan or X-ray that showed the colonies seen from MAC. One of the big reasons I was going to Mayo was to get an expert opinion from Dr. Askamit. After Dr. Askamit read through my many, many, many records over a course of 10 years, since I first got sick, he concluded that at this time I may have MAC but it should not be treated at this time because it does not appear on a CAT scan. I must tell you that I was shocked by his response as it was completely different than my pulmonologist locally. And to be honest, I seem to have met the criteria to be considered to have MAC & to start treatment. I have many underlying illnesses & it’s so hard to sort out what is what. Dr. Aksamit said to wait until it is seen on a CT scan. I have very mixed feelings about this. I am concerned that I should just wait until I become more infected to start treatment. Personally, I’d rather treat it BEFORE it gets worse. I guess I’m the only one who things that. My local pulmonologist changed his mind & decided not to start treatment at this time. Don’t get me wrong, I do NOT want take all of these meds that can cause such grief & danger!!! I also don’t want to just sit around & wait for things to get worse!!! Am I wrong in thinking that?? I value your opinion. Oh, and I have had the bronchiectasis diagnosis since Sept 2007 based on CT scan but now, when Dr. Askamit looked at a different CT scan, he said he didn’t see that. I’m SO confused. I know one thing to be true…I’m in a mess of a health situation with multi system dysfunctional & disease. I am sick every day of my life for 10 years now & without an underlying diaganosis of what disease I have in the lungs. They said I would not make past 2 years but here I am, 10 years later, alive & trying my absolute best to lead as much of a normal life as possible…mostly for my family. I’m back to a point where I am requiring supplemental oxygen again. I had been able to breath on my own for the past 3 years. What changed? We don’t know. I go into respiratory failure several times a year resulting in hospitalizations. We still can’t answer the question of why my lungs don’t convert oxygen from the air I breath in??? Anyway, I apologize for rambling on. I have been so withdrawn & sad, scared & lonely since receiving all of this new information. I also learned I have stage 1 heart failure & other metabolic syndrome that leaves me as the “perfect storm for a cardiac event” as the physician stated it. I ended up at Johns Hopkins a couple weeks ago with an excellent cardiologist who is trying to help my sort things out. My weight is a contributing factor to my alveolib hypoventilation &
We discussed having the stomach sleeve procedure to help me loose weight. There is so much on my mind & I apologize that I just rambeled on without even diving the long note into paragraphs!!! That’s just how my mind has been lately. I am in NO way trying to ask for self-pity…I’m just trying to get through my reality of day to day life the best that I can & with the most quality that I can. I’m just so confused right now. Oh, I had another bronch done on Wed. & we sent the washings for culture & this will probably be the ultimate testing to see if the washing show positive for MAC. We won’t know for 6 weeks! Again, I welcome your feedback… thanks for taking the time to read this!

Jump to this post

Very true…

REPLY
@jentaylor

Hi all, it’s Jen Taylor, I haven’t been in touch with you via “connect” for 2 months. I was seen at Mayo in Minnesota over a 2 week period. I received so much info from all of the evaluation. I have been overwhelmed & scared & I have been trying to process all of this on my own. It hasn’t been going to great so I’m trying to reach out & thought what a better group to talk to than others who are going through similar life experiences. After have a positive MAC culture from my bronchial washings, I was told that I had MAC & need to be treated. Previously (Sept. 2016) they diagnosed me with bronchiectasis. Nothing was seen on my CT scan or X-ray that showed the colonies seen from MAC. One of the big reasons I was going to Mayo was to get an expert opinion from Dr. Askamit. After Dr. Askamit read through my many, many, many records over a course of 10 years, since I first got sick, he concluded that at this time I may have MAC but it should not be treated at this time because it does not appear on a CAT scan. I must tell you that I was shocked by his response as it was completely different than my pulmonologist locally. And to be honest, I seem to have met the criteria to be considered to have MAC & to start treatment. I have many underlying illnesses & it’s so hard to sort out what is what. Dr. Aksamit said to wait until it is seen on a CT scan. I have very mixed feelings about this. I am concerned that I should just wait until I become more infected to start treatment. Personally, I’d rather treat it BEFORE it gets worse. I guess I’m the only one who things that. My local pulmonologist changed his mind & decided not to start treatment at this time. Don’t get me wrong, I do NOT want take all of these meds that can cause such grief & danger!!! I also don’t want to just sit around & wait for things to get worse!!! Am I wrong in thinking that?? I value your opinion. Oh, and I have had the bronchiectasis diagnosis since Sept 2007 based on CT scan but now, when Dr. Askamit looked at a different CT scan, he said he didn’t see that. I’m SO confused. I know one thing to be true…I’m in a mess of a health situation with multi system dysfunctional & disease. I am sick every day of my life for 10 years now & without an underlying diaganosis of what disease I have in the lungs. They said I would not make past 2 years but here I am, 10 years later, alive & trying my absolute best to lead as much of a normal life as possible…mostly for my family. I’m back to a point where I am requiring supplemental oxygen again. I had been able to breath on my own for the past 3 years. What changed? We don’t know. I go into respiratory failure several times a year resulting in hospitalizations. We still can’t answer the question of why my lungs don’t convert oxygen from the air I breath in??? Anyway, I apologize for rambling on. I have been so withdrawn & sad, scared & lonely since receiving all of this new information. I also learned I have stage 1 heart failure & other metabolic syndrome that leaves me as the “perfect storm for a cardiac event” as the physician stated it. I ended up at Johns Hopkins a couple weeks ago with an excellent cardiologist who is trying to help my sort things out. My weight is a contributing factor to my alveolib hypoventilation &
We discussed having the stomach sleeve procedure to help me loose weight. There is so much on my mind & I apologize that I just rambeled on without even diving the long note into paragraphs!!! That’s just how my mind has been lately. I am in NO way trying to ask for self-pity…I’m just trying to get through my reality of day to day life the best that I can & with the most quality that I can. I’m just so confused right now. Oh, I had another bronch done on Wed. & we sent the washings for culture & this will probably be the ultimate testing to see if the washing show positive for MAC. We won’t know for 6 weeks! Again, I welcome your feedback… thanks for taking the time to read this!

Jump to this post

Hi Terri M, I too wanted to go to an outdoor arts festival Monday but resisted. It was a hot & somewhat humid day. I’m so glad I didn’t go although I am sad that I didn’t get to go to a traditional annual festival. It bothers me that my illness keeps me from things I enjoy. I’m trying to learn how to let go of that.

I didn’t go anywhere today including my family picnic because of my breathing, sweating & my very high blood sugar. Oh well… I too am happy to have my bipap & oxygen to breath at night!

REPLY
@jentaylor

Hi all, it’s Jen Taylor, I haven’t been in touch with you via “connect” for 2 months. I was seen at Mayo in Minnesota over a 2 week period. I received so much info from all of the evaluation. I have been overwhelmed & scared & I have been trying to process all of this on my own. It hasn’t been going to great so I’m trying to reach out & thought what a better group to talk to than others who are going through similar life experiences. After have a positive MAC culture from my bronchial washings, I was told that I had MAC & need to be treated. Previously (Sept. 2016) they diagnosed me with bronchiectasis. Nothing was seen on my CT scan or X-ray that showed the colonies seen from MAC. One of the big reasons I was going to Mayo was to get an expert opinion from Dr. Askamit. After Dr. Askamit read through my many, many, many records over a course of 10 years, since I first got sick, he concluded that at this time I may have MAC but it should not be treated at this time because it does not appear on a CAT scan. I must tell you that I was shocked by his response as it was completely different than my pulmonologist locally. And to be honest, I seem to have met the criteria to be considered to have MAC & to start treatment. I have many underlying illnesses & it’s so hard to sort out what is what. Dr. Aksamit said to wait until it is seen on a CT scan. I have very mixed feelings about this. I am concerned that I should just wait until I become more infected to start treatment. Personally, I’d rather treat it BEFORE it gets worse. I guess I’m the only one who things that. My local pulmonologist changed his mind & decided not to start treatment at this time. Don’t get me wrong, I do NOT want take all of these meds that can cause such grief & danger!!! I also don’t want to just sit around & wait for things to get worse!!! Am I wrong in thinking that?? I value your opinion. Oh, and I have had the bronchiectasis diagnosis since Sept 2007 based on CT scan but now, when Dr. Askamit looked at a different CT scan, he said he didn’t see that. I’m SO confused. I know one thing to be true…I’m in a mess of a health situation with multi system dysfunctional & disease. I am sick every day of my life for 10 years now & without an underlying diaganosis of what disease I have in the lungs. They said I would not make past 2 years but here I am, 10 years later, alive & trying my absolute best to lead as much of a normal life as possible…mostly for my family. I’m back to a point where I am requiring supplemental oxygen again. I had been able to breath on my own for the past 3 years. What changed? We don’t know. I go into respiratory failure several times a year resulting in hospitalizations. We still can’t answer the question of why my lungs don’t convert oxygen from the air I breath in??? Anyway, I apologize for rambling on. I have been so withdrawn & sad, scared & lonely since receiving all of this new information. I also learned I have stage 1 heart failure & other metabolic syndrome that leaves me as the “perfect storm for a cardiac event” as the physician stated it. I ended up at Johns Hopkins a couple weeks ago with an excellent cardiologist who is trying to help my sort things out. My weight is a contributing factor to my alveolib hypoventilation &
We discussed having the stomach sleeve procedure to help me loose weight. There is so much on my mind & I apologize that I just rambeled on without even diving the long note into paragraphs!!! That’s just how my mind has been lately. I am in NO way trying to ask for self-pity…I’m just trying to get through my reality of day to day life the best that I can & with the most quality that I can. I’m just so confused right now. Oh, I had another bronch done on Wed. & we sent the washings for culture & this will probably be the ultimate testing to see if the washing show positive for MAC. We won’t know for 6 weeks! Again, I welcome your feedback… thanks for taking the time to read this!

Jump to this post

HI @jentaylor,I understand your confusion with so much going on including depression, Depression is such a nasty, debilitating monster, that can prevent us from healing. Hope you are getting help to kick it to the kerb, after 9 years I finally found the right doc who has taken the time and replaced things I have been lacking(like serotonin etc) and it has made a huge difference in my life, like coming out of a coma! I hope you can get the right help also.

REPLY
@jennifernicole

Hello,
I have been reading through these posts for the past several weeks and have learned a TON. I so appreciate the willingness of people to share their experiences.
I am a 37 y/o who was recently diagnosed with MIA (from BAL) and bronchiectasis after having four episodes of pneumonia since August 2016. I have had asthma all of my life and severe GERD that was fixed after a Nissen Fundoplication in 1999. Other than that I am a healthy individual. I was also diagnosed with a hernia after a recent cat scan.
It isn’t clear if the MAI is the cause if the pneumonia and related pulmonary issues or a consequence of already vulnerable lungs due to an unknowm cause. I didn’t have the bronchiectasis in February, per the cat scan, but it has since developed, per scan earlier in May. I started azithromyacin (sp?) last week and am beginning the second antibiotic tonight (Ethabutol?) and am a little nervous, as I have two toddlers and a demanding job. Any advice about anything would be much appreciated!
Thank you.
Jen

Jump to this post

I know it is so confusing when you don’t know exactly how I got this. They say that it is the MAC infection is what may have caused the bronchiectasis or vice versa? The doctor says some people can live with the MAC infection without taking an antibiotic if they aren’t having any symptoms that bother them. But yet they say that the infection can cause your lungs to worsen, so why would they let people live on with the infection without treatment? The doctor told me they would have to watch you on a regular monthly basis & CT scans to make sure it hasn’t gotten worse.

REPLY
@jennifernicole

Hello,
I have been reading through these posts for the past several weeks and have learned a TON. I so appreciate the willingness of people to share their experiences.
I am a 37 y/o who was recently diagnosed with MIA (from BAL) and bronchiectasis after having four episodes of pneumonia since August 2016. I have had asthma all of my life and severe GERD that was fixed after a Nissen Fundoplication in 1999. Other than that I am a healthy individual. I was also diagnosed with a hernia after a recent cat scan.
It isn’t clear if the MAI is the cause if the pneumonia and related pulmonary issues or a consequence of already vulnerable lungs due to an unknowm cause. I didn’t have the bronchiectasis in February, per the cat scan, but it has since developed, per scan earlier in May. I started azithromyacin (sp?) last week and am beginning the second antibiotic tonight (Ethabutol?) and am a little nervous, as I have two toddlers and a demanding job. Any advice about anything would be much appreciated!
Thank you.
Jen

Jump to this post

Thank you for your information! I hope you stay well and able to stay active for as long as you can! so you are not going to take any antibiotic at all to get rid of MAC?

REPLY
@lindam272

Tdrell, Thanks for that info! Is it too much trouble to locate the guidelines given for future scanning so we can share those with our doctors? I was planning on asking my doc to order a CT scan for me to compare with earlier ones when I go back in the next 4 – 6 weeks and would like to have that information before calling if you still have it. Thanks so much! Linda

Jump to this post

@tdrell Hi Terri, when you say “In SE Wisconsin we have NTM in city pipes….soil….aerosolized”, did you mean this could be true with the entire state? I’ve lived in Madison for over 30 years and have always been drinking the tap water. Should I be worried about this problem as well?

REPLY
@jentaylor

Hi all, it’s Jen Taylor, I haven’t been in touch with you via “connect” for 2 months. I was seen at Mayo in Minnesota over a 2 week period. I received so much info from all of the evaluation. I have been overwhelmed & scared & I have been trying to process all of this on my own. It hasn’t been going to great so I’m trying to reach out & thought what a better group to talk to than others who are going through similar life experiences. After have a positive MAC culture from my bronchial washings, I was told that I had MAC & need to be treated. Previously (Sept. 2016) they diagnosed me with bronchiectasis. Nothing was seen on my CT scan or X-ray that showed the colonies seen from MAC. One of the big reasons I was going to Mayo was to get an expert opinion from Dr. Askamit. After Dr. Askamit read through my many, many, many records over a course of 10 years, since I first got sick, he concluded that at this time I may have MAC but it should not be treated at this time because it does not appear on a CAT scan. I must tell you that I was shocked by his response as it was completely different than my pulmonologist locally. And to be honest, I seem to have met the criteria to be considered to have MAC & to start treatment. I have many underlying illnesses & it’s so hard to sort out what is what. Dr. Aksamit said to wait until it is seen on a CT scan. I have very mixed feelings about this. I am concerned that I should just wait until I become more infected to start treatment. Personally, I’d rather treat it BEFORE it gets worse. I guess I’m the only one who things that. My local pulmonologist changed his mind & decided not to start treatment at this time. Don’t get me wrong, I do NOT want take all of these meds that can cause such grief & danger!!! I also don’t want to just sit around & wait for things to get worse!!! Am I wrong in thinking that?? I value your opinion. Oh, and I have had the bronchiectasis diagnosis since Sept 2007 based on CT scan but now, when Dr. Askamit looked at a different CT scan, he said he didn’t see that. I’m SO confused. I know one thing to be true…I’m in a mess of a health situation with multi system dysfunctional & disease. I am sick every day of my life for 10 years now & without an underlying diaganosis of what disease I have in the lungs. They said I would not make past 2 years but here I am, 10 years later, alive & trying my absolute best to lead as much of a normal life as possible…mostly for my family. I’m back to a point where I am requiring supplemental oxygen again. I had been able to breath on my own for the past 3 years. What changed? We don’t know. I go into respiratory failure several times a year resulting in hospitalizations. We still can’t answer the question of why my lungs don’t convert oxygen from the air I breath in??? Anyway, I apologize for rambling on. I have been so withdrawn & sad, scared & lonely since receiving all of this new information. I also learned I have stage 1 heart failure & other metabolic syndrome that leaves me as the “perfect storm for a cardiac event” as the physician stated it. I ended up at Johns Hopkins a couple weeks ago with an excellent cardiologist who is trying to help my sort things out. My weight is a contributing factor to my alveolib hypoventilation &
We discussed having the stomach sleeve procedure to help me loose weight. There is so much on my mind & I apologize that I just rambeled on without even diving the long note into paragraphs!!! That’s just how my mind has been lately. I am in NO way trying to ask for self-pity…I’m just trying to get through my reality of day to day life the best that I can & with the most quality that I can. I’m just so confused right now. Oh, I had another bronch done on Wed. & we sent the washings for culture & this will probably be the ultimate testing to see if the washing show positive for MAC. We won’t know for 6 weeks! Again, I welcome your feedback… thanks for taking the time to read this!

Jump to this post

Hi @heathert, yes depression is a MONSTER & is a pro at telling you lies about so many things. I have been taking meds since I was 12 years old. I finally have a great combination of 4 different meds after my great family doctor had me take a genome study to evaluate which meds work best with my body & how I metabolize them. It was very helpful information. The depression & anxiety are a big contributor of why I don’t want to wear my oxygen in public or even at home with my family. It also tells my lies about how I look at myself & my self worth. It’s a never ending battle but I am making great strides in therapy! I have a very dark & upsetting (to say the least) past that set me way back from where I ought to have been.

I actually felt it was unfair for me to get such illnesses that I have, especially the lungs, because I felt that I had my fair share of dealing & overcoming so much in my life. This way of thinking does not serve me well. I try to let it go but I can’t seem to actually succeed in this. I guess life is unfair at times but e have to find the positives & focus our attention there & be grateful for what we do have.

REPLY
@jentaylor

Hi all, it’s Jen Taylor, I haven’t been in touch with you via “connect” for 2 months. I was seen at Mayo in Minnesota over a 2 week period. I received so much info from all of the evaluation. I have been overwhelmed & scared & I have been trying to process all of this on my own. It hasn’t been going to great so I’m trying to reach out & thought what a better group to talk to than others who are going through similar life experiences. After have a positive MAC culture from my bronchial washings, I was told that I had MAC & need to be treated. Previously (Sept. 2016) they diagnosed me with bronchiectasis. Nothing was seen on my CT scan or X-ray that showed the colonies seen from MAC. One of the big reasons I was going to Mayo was to get an expert opinion from Dr. Askamit. After Dr. Askamit read through my many, many, many records over a course of 10 years, since I first got sick, he concluded that at this time I may have MAC but it should not be treated at this time because it does not appear on a CAT scan. I must tell you that I was shocked by his response as it was completely different than my pulmonologist locally. And to be honest, I seem to have met the criteria to be considered to have MAC & to start treatment. I have many underlying illnesses & it’s so hard to sort out what is what. Dr. Aksamit said to wait until it is seen on a CT scan. I have very mixed feelings about this. I am concerned that I should just wait until I become more infected to start treatment. Personally, I’d rather treat it BEFORE it gets worse. I guess I’m the only one who things that. My local pulmonologist changed his mind & decided not to start treatment at this time. Don’t get me wrong, I do NOT want take all of these meds that can cause such grief & danger!!! I also don’t want to just sit around & wait for things to get worse!!! Am I wrong in thinking that?? I value your opinion. Oh, and I have had the bronchiectasis diagnosis since Sept 2007 based on CT scan but now, when Dr. Askamit looked at a different CT scan, he said he didn’t see that. I’m SO confused. I know one thing to be true…I’m in a mess of a health situation with multi system dysfunctional & disease. I am sick every day of my life for 10 years now & without an underlying diaganosis of what disease I have in the lungs. They said I would not make past 2 years but here I am, 10 years later, alive & trying my absolute best to lead as much of a normal life as possible…mostly for my family. I’m back to a point where I am requiring supplemental oxygen again. I had been able to breath on my own for the past 3 years. What changed? We don’t know. I go into respiratory failure several times a year resulting in hospitalizations. We still can’t answer the question of why my lungs don’t convert oxygen from the air I breath in??? Anyway, I apologize for rambling on. I have been so withdrawn & sad, scared & lonely since receiving all of this new information. I also learned I have stage 1 heart failure & other metabolic syndrome that leaves me as the “perfect storm for a cardiac event” as the physician stated it. I ended up at Johns Hopkins a couple weeks ago with an excellent cardiologist who is trying to help my sort things out. My weight is a contributing factor to my alveolib hypoventilation &
We discussed having the stomach sleeve procedure to help me loose weight. There is so much on my mind & I apologize that I just rambeled on without even diving the long note into paragraphs!!! That’s just how my mind has been lately. I am in NO way trying to ask for self-pity…I’m just trying to get through my reality of day to day life the best that I can & with the most quality that I can. I’m just so confused right now. Oh, I had another bronch done on Wed. & we sent the washings for culture & this will probably be the ultimate testing to see if the washing show positive for MAC. We won’t know for 6 weeks! Again, I welcome your feedback… thanks for taking the time to read this!

Jump to this post

@jentaylor Hi Jen, it sounds as if you are now on the right track. When I was dealing with cirrhosis prior to transplant I avoided the “why me” (a la Nancy Kerrigan) because I figured why not me? I try to live a decent life, I’ve had my ups and downs, but there are many people better than I am who are dealing with worse than I did and do.
On an intellectual level I do wonder how this happened but I chalk it up to letting myself get WAY OVERWEIGHT which led to diabetes and then fatty liver which led to cirrhosis. I know not every overweight person has these problems but I think a person’s physiology determines what effects them.
Good luck staying positive, that can help you overcome so much. You sound as if you are progressing very well in that direction.
JK

REPLY

Hello Katherine, when you took the Amikacine is it portable inhaler? My Dr. said I need to take it but did not explain much about it. He just says its inhaler and they have to get approval from my insurance and then order it. I really don’t know what to expect. Thanks for the info. I hope your felling much better now. Blessing to you Cila.

REPLY
@cila

Hello Katherine, when you took the Amikacine is it portable inhaler? My Dr. said I need to take it but did not explain much about it. He just says its inhaler and they have to get approval from my insurance and then order it. I really don’t know what to expect. Thanks for the info. I hope your felling much better now. Blessing to you Cila.

Jump to this post

@cila, Cila, it was simple to pull an answer from my file cabinet .. JUST LIKE doctors not to explain!! Thank heavens for Connect! As I recall I did NOT need a prescription for the PARI unit .. only the Amikacin and the saline. Truthfully I still feel lousy .. really don’t know why. I ended the 1st cycle of the 3 cycles of the Inhaled antibiotic Tobramycin for the 3 new bacteria in my lungs .. a 6 month process .. just extreme fatigue daily .. plus my husband is in the hospital .. 3rd time in the past 3 months. No rest for the wicked! But I will get through it .. we all do ,. we all have! Hugs to all! I think of all of you daily and am SO proud of how you have carried on with our wonderful Connect .. keeping it so active and caring .. wonderful job!! Katherine

From my File Cabinet:
ANTIBIOTICS-INHALED AMIKACIN inhaled Amikacin there was a stress on STERILIZATION! Really keeping things clean! Now since I stopped with the inhaled Amikacin 5/14 perhaps there is a new machine but THESE WERE MY INSTRUCTIONS .. THEY MAY HAVE CHANGED SINCE 2011!!
1. If you wish to use Mayo Pharmacy, you will need to call the pharmacy to set up a mail order account. The phone number is 1-800-445-6326, and press “0” to speak with a live person. They will ask you for your mailing address as well as your credit card information and prescription insurance information, if not already on file. If you travel, just let them know to which address you wish to have your prescriptions sent.
2. Once you have an official amikacin prescription from Dr. Aksamit or your Doctor, contact the pharmacy and ask them to mail the Amikacin out to you. The first prescription will be for one vial, for your test dose. Once you receive the medication, please call your physician to arrange for the administration of your test dose. If your doctor is unfamiliar with this procedure, then s/he will need to contact Dr. Aksamit/your doctor.
3. In addition to the amikacin, you will also need normal saline (which will be included) for diluting the amikacin prior to inhalation. Your doctor will also need to supply you with, or write a prescription for, a nebulizer (machine for administering inhaled medication).
USING

1.Use a clean syringe each time you enter an amikacin vial. Reorder the syringes each month when you refill the amikacin.
2. Needles/syringes should be disposed of by placing them in a “sharps container”. Syringes should be dropped into the container needle end first, and we do not recommend recapping the needle. While sharps containers can be purchased, you can also make your own by re-using an empty hard plastic bottle, such as one used for liquid laundry detergent, shampoo, wet wipes, coffee, etc. The container should be labeled, “Do Not Recycle: Household Sharps”, and may be placed with the cover on in the trash, though you may wish to check to see whether there are any sharps collection sites in your area (which are considered safer than placing sharps in your trash).

DAILY SCHEDULE
1.In 4-Cup Plastic Measuring Cup http://smile.amazon.com/Norpro-4-Cup-Plastic-Measuring-Cup/dp/B000HJBFFS/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1462336680&sr=8-1&keywords=plastic+4+cup+measuring+cup Took apart and washed the nebulizer parts in antibacterial dish soap in HOT water .. rinsed carefully in HOT water. Let sit overnight in to dry in measuring cup. In morning transferred clean parts into a “baby bottle sterilizer”. From the millions of things I had researched .. I had read about this trick .. a whole lot easier than trying to boil the parts for thirty months! By having a weeks supply of the nebulizer and this sterilizer .. I was able to make a frankly unpleasant task a little less unpleasant AND keep myself safe. Maybe someone else can come up with something better/easier but this is the best I could come up with. Mine was: The First Years Power of Steam Electric Steam Sterilizer from: http://smile.amazon.com/First-Years-Power-Electric-Sterilizer/dp/B002WN2B6O?ie=UTF8&keywords=baby%20bottle%20sterilizer&qid=1462337037&ref_=sr_1_12_s_it&s=baby-products&sr=1-12
TIP: The only other tip was we travel a lot so I purchase a 2nd Pari that was smaller but took longer. I would envy you if a newer unit has come out that would take a shorter time. Personally it always took me close to a half hour to get the Amikacin in my lungs .. no matter how deeply I tried to breathe .. AND if I tried not to pay too much attention to a TV program that I was trying to distract myself with! BUT I got healthy so DO IT! In the end all this is worth it .. GO FOR IT! Good luck .. hope some of this has helped.

TIP MY UNIT: PARI VIOS LC Sprint, Deluxe I found the best price at Just Nebulizer $55.95 .. just checked .. still the best price I could find. Ask the doctor .. this is the one I used. http://justnebulizers.com/pari-vios-nebulizer.html?
gclid=Cj0KEQjwmKG5BRDv4YaE5t6oqf0BEiQAwqDNfBm39YY5GKewgU0u12sOyKrzsuPl1iFF6-faEvvUjxkaAmQd8P8HAQ

TIP I then purchased Reusable Nebulizer Part No 023F35 : I PURCHASED SO WILL HAVE 7 NEBULIZERS-ONLY HAVE TO STERILIZE ONCE A WEEK! $14.95 ea but I was willing to do 7 for the convenience at a stressful time in life .. plus I wrote it off as a medical tax deduction. http://justnebulizers.com/pari-lc-sprint-reusable-nebulizer-set.html?gclid=CLr_vtvLv8wCFQwxaQodgMwGBg

REPLY
Please login or register to post a reply.