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Dr. D. Love
Dr. D. Love, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 18786
Experience:  Family Physician for 10 years; Hospital Medical Director for 10 years.
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My doctor says I have inflated lungs - I am a heavy smoker

Resolved Question:

My doctor says I have inflated lungs - I am a heavy smoker - the doctor did not recommend any treatment - should I be requesting a scan?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.
Hello from JustAnswer.
Was this determination made based solely on exam or was a test done?
If a test was done, what test was done?
What symptoms are you having, if any?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I had a chest x-ray
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.
What symptoms are you having, if any?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Cough and phlegm that makes me vomit and pain in chest why
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.
I ask because the treatment would not be for the over inflated lungs, but would be oriented towards symptoms, but let me type a more complete answer to the original question.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Sorry did not mean to say why quite difficult to use this site
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.
No problem. There are several issues to consider in this situation.
The fact that the lungs are over inflated on a chest x-ray would indicate that chronic lung disease is present, most often from smoking. The proper term is chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD. There is no treatment indicated simply because the lungs are over inflated, although it is appropriate to quit smoking. Quitting smoking will not alter the previous damage to the lungs, but it will prevent further damage to the lungs.
Since you are having cough and sputum production, it would be appropriate to consider treatment for the relief of these symptoms. The usual first treatment would be the use of a medicine to thin the sputum to make it easier to clear from the lungs. An over the counter medicine that can help with this would be guaifenesin, which is available in many different brand names, such as Robitussin or Mucinex.
If someone with COPD is having shortness of breath, then it would be appropriate to perform further evaluation, but the next step would not be a scan. The next step would be a spirometry, also called pulmonary function tests. This involves blowing into a machine that measures the flow and volumes of air moved. It also allows a test dose of a drug to see if the air movement can improve.
So, there is no need to perform a scan because of the findings on the chest x-ray. For the cough and sputum production, it would be appropriate to take guaifenesin. If further symptoms develop, the next test to consider would be a spirometry, not a scan.
If I can provide any further information, please let me know.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
He did do a test where I blew into a machine and then just shook his head and said I was going to suffer - I did not a
sk any questions as I find him quite daunting
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.
Is it possible to obtain the results of the spirometry?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Actually I cannot engage with him at all - perhaps I should change to another doctor - he also said I had high blood pressure and Cholesterol but didn't recommend that I do anything - very worrying
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.
If you are having difficulty getting good information from your doctor, it would be appropriate to consider another doctor.
If you can obtain a copy of the report, I can comment upon whether the test indicates treatment beyond the guaifenesin.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.
You are most welcome.
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