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racing with asthma, face mask?



 
 
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  #1  
Old October 23rd 06, 04:03 AM posted to rec.bicycles.racing
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Posts: 42
Default racing with asthma, face mask?

I have developed asthma a year ago after a sinus infection, and stayed
off racing for a year, just riding for myself. The asthma gradually
improved with traditional meds, or just my body adapting (the latter
more likely). I've been off most meds for a couple of months by now.

Recenrtly I timed myself out of curiousity up a local climb which is
used by locals for reference, an all-out effort for ~20 min. I did much
better than my pre-asthma best, but within hours after the race the
asthma came back to the same level it's been when I first developed it.
It's not responding to any traditional meds, too. I am wondering if
anyone who races with asthma has had a similar experience of
race-induced long-lasting asthma relapses. I could not believe that
just a single episode of an all-out riding could cause a long-lasting
damage (an hour of cough is what I expected, but not days, and who
knows how long it will last from now). My body is just fine otherwise.

I am also thinking about racing while wearing a mask (my doc thinks its
the California pollen) - has anyone tried that?

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  #2  
Old October 24th 06, 06:42 PM posted to rec.bicycles.racing
Mike Jacoubowsky
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,452
Default racing with asthma, face mask?

I have developed asthma a year ago after a sinus infection, and stayed
off racing for a year, just riding for myself. The asthma gradually
improved with traditional meds, or just my body adapting (the latter
more likely). I've been off most meds for a couple of months by now.

Recenrtly I timed myself out of curiousity up a local climb which is
used by locals for reference, an all-out effort for ~20 min. I did much
better than my pre-asthma best, but within hours after the race the
asthma came back to the same level it's been when I first developed it.
It's not responding to any traditional meds, too. I am wondering if
anyone who races with asthma has had a similar experience of
race-induced long-lasting asthma relapses. I could not believe that
just a single episode of an all-out riding could cause a long-lasting
damage (an hour of cough is what I expected, but not days, and who
knows how long it will last from now). My body is just fine otherwise.

I am also thinking about racing while wearing a mask (my doc thinks its
the California pollen) - has anyone tried that?



I can't imagine that the "cure" (racing while wearing a mask) wouldn't be
worse than the illness.

I raced for a number of years with pretty nasty allergies and asthma, but
never took any meds for them. Initially they tried all manner of things to
target the allergies, but nothing seemed to work (didn't even make me
drowsy) so they gave up. I sounded like a steam engine when climbing back
then, and that's pretty much the way I sound now. Colder weather definitely
makes it worse, no question... below about 60 degrees or so I get some
wheezing action going from time to time.

When you talk about meds, have you used an inhaler? That was all the rage
when I raced; people who didn't have asthma would claim otherwise and get
prescriptions for inhalers, which supposedly did wondrous things. I never
did; didn't like the idea of drugs in general (and I grew up in the 70s???).

--Mike-- Chain Reaction Bicycles
www.ChainReactionBicycles.com


wrote in message
ups.com...
I have developed asthma a year ago after a sinus infection, and stayed
off racing for a year, just riding for myself. The asthma gradually
improved with traditional meds, or just my body adapting (the latter
more likely). I've been off most meds for a couple of months by now.

Recenrtly I timed myself out of curiousity up a local climb which is
used by locals for reference, an all-out effort for ~20 min. I did much
better than my pre-asthma best, but within hours after the race the
asthma came back to the same level it's been when I first developed it.
It's not responding to any traditional meds, too. I am wondering if
anyone who races with asthma has had a similar experience of
race-induced long-lasting asthma relapses. I could not believe that
just a single episode of an all-out riding could cause a long-lasting
damage (an hour of cough is what I expected, but not days, and who
knows how long it will last from now). My body is just fine otherwise.

I am also thinking about racing while wearing a mask (my doc thinks its
the California pollen) - has anyone tried that?



  #3  
Old October 25th 06, 05:05 AM posted to rec.bicycles.racing
[email protected]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 42
Default racing with asthma, face mask?


I can't imagine that the "cure" (racing while wearing a mask) wouldn't be
worse than the illness.


yeah, I will look like a cyborg, but...


I raced for a number of years with pretty nasty allergies and asthma, but
never took any meds for them. Initially they tried all manner of things to
target the allergies, but nothing seemed to work (didn't even make me
drowsy) so they gave up. I sounded like a steam engine when climbing back
then, and that's pretty much the way I sound now. Colder weather definitely
makes it worse, no question... below about 60 degrees or so I get some
wheezing action going from time to time.


Pehaps, my tolerance to wheezing is lower than yours. And in my case
it's also the chest tightness, the chest pain, shortness of breath and
the burning in the throat. Since all these symptoms are relatively new
to me, they make me very nervous (exhacerbating the original symptoms).
Before the asthma ocurred the breathing was never my rate-limiting
factor.

When you talk about meds, have you used an inhaler? That was all the rage
when I raced; people who didn't have asthma would claim otherwise and get
prescriptions for inhalers


I use inhalers (albuterol and advair), but they don't work. The only
reliable "cure" is traveling out of CA or at least away from the
coast/central valley.

I would not mind having a short painful ~30 min attack after a race,
and be done with it. But the "attack" I got after this recent effort
has been lasting endlessly for days. This is what ****es me off.

  #4  
Old October 25th 06, 05:31 AM posted to rec.bicycles.racing
Mike Jacoubowsky
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,452
Default racing with asthma, face mask?

I raced for a number of years with pretty nasty allergies and asthma, but
never took any meds for them. Initially they tried all manner of things
to
target the allergies, but nothing seemed to work (didn't even make me
drowsy) so they gave up. I sounded like a steam engine when climbing back
then, and that's pretty much the way I sound now. Colder weather
definitely
makes it worse, no question... below about 60 degrees or so I get some
wheezing action going from time to time.


Pehaps, my tolerance to wheezing is lower than yours. And in my case
it's also the chest tightness, the chest pain, shortness of breath and
the burning in the throat. Since all these symptoms are relatively new
to me, they make me very nervous (exhacerbating the original symptoms).
Before the asthma ocurred the breathing was never my rate-limiting
factor.


No, this isn't about your tolerance... my asthma is a mild inconvenience;
yours sounds far more serious.

When you talk about meds, have you used an inhaler? That was all the rage
when I raced; people who didn't have asthma would claim otherwise and get
prescriptions for inhalers


I use inhalers (albuterol and advair), but they don't work. The only
reliable "cure" is traveling out of CA or at least away from the
coast/central valley.


Does your doctor give you any reason why you're not responding to albuterol
or advair?

--Mike-- Chain Reaction Bicycles
www.ChainReactionBicycles.com


wrote in message
ups.com...

I can't imagine that the "cure" (racing while wearing a mask) wouldn't be
worse than the illness.


yeah, I will look like a cyborg, but...


I raced for a number of years with pretty nasty allergies and asthma, but
never took any meds for them. Initially they tried all manner of things
to
target the allergies, but nothing seemed to work (didn't even make me
drowsy) so they gave up. I sounded like a steam engine when climbing back
then, and that's pretty much the way I sound now. Colder weather
definitely
makes it worse, no question... below about 60 degrees or so I get some
wheezing action going from time to time.


Pehaps, my tolerance to wheezing is lower than yours. And in my case
it's also the chest tightness, the chest pain, shortness of breath and
the burning in the throat. Since all these symptoms are relatively new
to me, they make me very nervous (exhacerbating the original symptoms).
Before the asthma ocurred the breathing was never my rate-limiting
factor.

When you talk about meds, have you used an inhaler? That was all the rage
when I raced; people who didn't have asthma would claim otherwise and get
prescriptions for inhalers


I use inhalers (albuterol and advair), but they don't work. The only
reliable "cure" is traveling out of CA or at least away from the
coast/central valley.

I would not mind having a short painful ~30 min attack after a race,
and be done with it. But the "attack" I got after this recent effort
has been lasting endlessly for days. This is what ****es me off.



  #5  
Old October 25th 06, 07:05 AM posted to rec.bicycles.racing
[email protected]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 42
Default racing with asthma, face mask?

Does your doctor give you any reason why you're not responding to albuterol
or advair?


he tested for several possibilities (incorrect inhaling technique,
vocal cord dysfunction, heart disease, sinus infection) , but with no
results so far. Actually, he does not know about the recent
riding-induced relapse: getting an appointment with the HMO system
takes weeks/months. "Call your doctor if..." you hear in commercials is
a joke. You can't get qualified urgent care unless it's too late for
you.

  #6  
Old October 25th 06, 07:12 PM posted to rec.bicycles.racing
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Posts: 1
Default racing with asthma, face mask?

I am a respiratory therapist...who races alot.And uses an inhaler.It
improves my expiratory flows 25%.I have mild airway disease..still get
good results racing..

The first thing you need is a Peak Flow Meter to measure your
expiratory flows...Objective assessment is almost impossible w/o some
numbers...Get one ASAP,some Dr.s give them away.

Wearing a mask is not the answer.But there IS undoubtedly an answer to
your problems.Alot of info can be obtained online.Discontinuing your
inhalers was asking for a reoccurrence...Olympic Golds have been won by
athmatics who control their asthma by faithfully following a
program...if you truly have Reactive Airway Disease(RAD)ie asthma,then
you will need to be very disciplined in dealing with it ...and not
treat it only when you have problems....it is then too late...and you
suffer the effects..

There is so much more to say on this...but I am out of time.

Just my 2 cents,best of luck...east
wrote:
Does your doctor give you any reason why you're not responding to albuterol
or advair?


he tested for several possibilities (incorrect inhaling technique,
vocal cord dysfunction, heart disease, sinus infection) , but with no
results so far. Actually, he does not know about the recent
riding-induced relapse: getting an appointment with the HMO system
takes weeks/months. "Call your doctor if..." you hear in commercials is
a joke. You can't get qualified urgent care unless it's too late for
you.


  #7  
Old October 25th 06, 08:31 PM posted to rec.bicycles.racing
Mike Jacoubowsky
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 2,972
Default racing with asthma, face mask?

Wearing a mask is not the answer.But there IS undoubtedly an answer to
your problems.Alot of info can be obtained online.Discontinuing your
inhalers was asking for a reoccurrence...Olympic Golds have been won by
athmatics who control their asthma by faithfully following a
program...if you truly have Reactive Airway Disease(RAD)ie asthma,then
you will need to be very disciplined in dealing with it ...and not
treat it only when you have problems....it is then too late...and you
suffer the effects..


There is so much more to say on this...but I am out of time.


Or out of breath? :)

Any recommended resources on the 'net for those who have, or wonder if they
do have, an "Reactive Airway Disease?" Or is this something where a little
bit of knowledge can be a dangerous thing, and you should immediately see a
Doctor?

For that matter, are there dangers in not dealing appropriately with an RAD?
Long-term lung damage or whatever?

--Mike Jacoubowsky
Chain Reaction Bicycles
www.ChainReaction.com
Redwood City & Los Altos, CA USA

wrote in message
oups.com...
I am a respiratory therapist...who races alot.And uses an inhaler.It
improves my expiratory flows 25%.I have mild airway disease..still get
good results racing..

The first thing you need is a Peak Flow Meter to measure your
expiratory flows...Objective assessment is almost impossible w/o some
numbers...Get one ASAP,some Dr.s give them away.

Wearing a mask is not the answer.But there IS undoubtedly an answer to
your problems.Alot of info can be obtained online.Discontinuing your
inhalers was asking for a reoccurrence...Olympic Golds have been won by
athmatics who control their asthma by faithfully following a
program...if you truly have Reactive Airway Disease(RAD)ie asthma,then
you will need to be very disciplined in dealing with it ...and not
treat it only when you have problems....it is then too late...and you
suffer the effects..

There is so much more to say on this...but I am out of time.

Just my 2 cents,best of luck...east
wrote:
Does your doctor give you any reason why you're not responding to
albuterol
or advair?


he tested for several possibilities (incorrect inhaling technique,
vocal cord dysfunction, heart disease, sinus infection) , but with no
results so far. Actually, he does not know about the recent
riding-induced relapse: getting an appointment with the HMO system
takes weeks/months. "Call your doctor if..." you hear in commercials is
a joke. You can't get qualified urgent care unless it's too late for
you.




  #8  
Old October 25th 06, 09:31 PM posted to rec.bicycles.racing
[email protected]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 42
Default racing with asthma, face mask?

wrote:
I am a respiratory therapist...who races alot.And uses an inhaler.It
improves my expiratory flows 25%.I have mild airway disease..still get
good results racing..

The first thing you need is a Peak Flow Meter to measure your
expiratory flows...Objective assessment is almost impossible w/o some
numbers...Get one ASAP,some Dr.s give them away.

Wearing a mask is not the answer.But there IS undoubtedly an answer to
your problems.Alot of info can be obtained online.Discontinuing your
inhalers was asking for a reoccurrence...Olympic Golds have been won by
athmatics who control their asthma by faithfully following a
program...if you truly have Reactive Airway Disease(RAD)ie asthma,then
you will need to be very disciplined in dealing with it ...and not
treat it only when you have problems....it is then too late...and you
suffer the effects..

There is so much more to say on this...but I am out of time.


Thank you for your note. I do have a peak flow meter, and I never see
any changes in peak flow, regardless of how bad/good I am feeling. OK,
sometimes, immediately after a very long, slow, ride I see an INCREASE
in peak flow (from 750 to 850), otherwise the peak flow is always 750,
even when I am coughing up chunks of my lungs that very minute.

I do research online from time to time, when I don't get any answers
from docs. E.g. recently I have found that steroid inhalers (I've been
on the highest dose for 6 months) don't have a substantial effect on
athletes, as opposed to regular people. Here is the review where I read
it:

Sports Medicine, 2005, 35(7) 565.
Asthma, Airway Inflammation and Treatment in Elite Athletes
Ilkka Helenius,^'^ Aki Lumme^ and Tari Haahtela^
I can provide a PDF if you don't have an access to this.

This is consistent with my case. And my docs never told me anything
about this. They also did not tell me that steroid inhalers increase
the chance of severe asthma attacks.

As for the beta-agonists, I used to take 2 puffs before each ride and
did not feel any different: I still get the spasm with each breath of
air the fist ~30 min I ride, then it becomes better. So I figured why
should I get myself resistant to beta agonists by taking them every
day, if I can save them for true emergencies (and I don't get any
effect in emergency anyway - again, judging by my symptoms and the
unchaged peakflow).

That review also mentions fish oils as a possible way to desensitize
your immune system. So I will try that as well.

  #9  
Old October 25th 06, 09:36 PM posted to rec.bicycles.racing
[email protected]
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Posts: 42
Default racing with asthma, face mask?

.... so, to stress this again, I have never discontinued the steroids,
only the agonists.

BTW, if you are a therapist, can you recommend anyone in the Bay Area?
I am looking for someone who is willing to help. By "willing to help" I
mean answering an anxious phone call from me within a couple of days,
not weeks/months/never (the latter is my experience with docs so far).

  #10  
Old October 28th 06, 04:31 AM posted to rec.bicycles.racing
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Posts: 1
Default racing with asthma, face mask?

I have a great doc who treats me for both allergies and asthma (and I
race). He's also a cyclist and works with lots of other athletes. His
name is Stephen Machtinger and he's got offices in both Atherton and
San Mateo. 650-306-1010


wrote:
... so, to stress this again, I have never discontinued the steroids,
only the agonists.

BTW, if you are a therapist, can you recommend anyone in the Bay Area?
I am looking for someone who is willing to help. By "willing to help" I
mean answering an anxious phone call from me within a couple of days,
not weeks/months/never (the latter is my experience with docs so far).


 




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