The Phlegm Chronicles


A PSA: avoiding pulmonology appointments can lead to shortness of breath, wheeziness and some seriously weird/bad lab numbers.

It’s hard, though. You get complacent. You get used to coughing fits, to the way your chest feels when it’s tight. It’s just how life is.

But a few weeks ago I had a turning point, I was annoyed with the fact that I was wheezing after walking up a tiny, tiny hill.

Luckily I have a very good (and attractive, in a strangely older/goofy kind of way) pulmonologist. He’s only the second pulmonologist I’ve ever had, actually (I love the stability of my specialists!) So I booked an appointment and we came up with a plan.

Unfortunately for me, that plan involved coughing into vials. Having dealt with a plethora of medical tests and procedures for as long as I can remember, I was more worried about the logistics of having a coughing attack while I was in a place to cough into the vial…

Not sure if this was a good thing or not, but I quickly had a coughing attack and got my vials all set up and delivered. Next I waited.

Thanks to the Internet, I didn’t have to wait long! Rather amusingly, I was sent periodic updates throughout the day with new results from my samples. Of course, these results were in no sort of context and meant nothing without explanation!

Late today I got a message with an explanation from my doctor: my asthma symptoms are back. Apparently my white blood cell count was 49%. It should be 1 to 3%! Oops!

So I’m now going back on the inhaled steroids that I was happy to stop. Sigh. But breathing is good. And necessary.

So those are The Phlegm Chronicles for the week.

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