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Asthmatic, have cold and chest infection, intense rib pain causing difficulty in coughing, history of pneumonia, lung collapse. Similar signs?

Hi, I m a 48 year old female asthmatic & have had a cold & chest infection for nearly 3 weeks now. GP prescribed antibiotics and Prednisolone steroids 4 days ago but these don t seem to be making any difference. The cough is dry & persistent and I now have excruciating pain in my ribs (at the top right hand side under my breast) which is making it agony to cough, sneeze or even blow my nose. I had pneumonia and a partially collapsed lung about 20 years ago and I m concerned this could be heading the same way so would be grateful for any advice. Thank you!
Asked On : Tue, 23 Oct 2012
Answers:  3 Views:  65
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OBGYN 's  Response
Your symptoms are typical for this season and as age advances, the systemic defenses come down and this causes infections to create trouble. I suggest that you consult a pulmonologist and take advice. You may not be having any recurrence of your old pneumonia but owing to the reduced ventilatory capacity following the asthma, it takes time for the symptoms to subside. Your pain is perhaps a muscle spasm following your incessant cough. You should have steam inhalations, nebulising, pain killer and local analgesic gel application. Please get further instructions from your doctor. Take care.
Answered: Tue, 23 Oct 2012
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Pulmonologist Dr. Arnab Maji's  Response
Thanks for query
Viral infections are more common in asthmatic. Bacterial pneumonia if occured mostly due to chlamydia and mycoplasma. So macrolides in the form of clarithromycin or azithromycin need to be added with your antibiotic regime if not done yet. Go for a recent chest x-ray to see the underlying lung to exclude other complications and also to look for radiological pattern of consolidation. If any sputum production is there send the sputum for culture sensitivity to choose appropriate antibiotics. Take non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents like ibuprofen for pain relief. Consult with a pulmonologist and get yourself thoroughly examined.
Thank you.
Answered: Tue, 23 Oct 2012
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Pulmonologist Dr. Shashi Dangwal's  Response
In a known asthmatic, a chest infection can aggravate the symptoms of asthma. I hope your doctor did a x ray chest to rule out any pneumonia. The persistent cough that you are having is a symptom of asthma. The chest pain that you are having could be because of strain in some muscle fibres or even a crack in the rib as a result of persistent cough. You may take a short course of oral steroids again, a montair lc and start seroflo or foracort inhaler. Be consistent with your inhaler treatment and soon you will start feeling better.
Answered: Tue, 23 Oct 2012
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