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3 October 2017
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Patient Stories

Here at Evergreen we pride ourselves on the fact that the business has been built on customer recommendations. Your knowledge is valuable and we always enjoy hearing your feedback. Here are just a few stories our customers wanted to share.

Cameralady

Ken's Story

Over the years I have struggled with constant chest infections but, for some reason, I could not get rid of them. Last year we got a new family doctor who had me on antibiotics and looked back on my notes, he realised that I was getting the same sputum test results back each time. This was a pneumonia influenza bug which would not go away no matter what they threw at it. The doctor said that this bug was obviously deep inside the lungs, in a place where the antibiotics could not reach. I explained that I had been in hospital with Pneumonia in 2001, and we wondered if all these infections were caused by something that had never cleared.

I also spoke about the wheezing and the distressing cough, which started as soon as I got up each day. The volume of mucus coming up each day was quite frightening and hurt quite a lot because I had cracked a rib by coughing so much. In the end we discussed a nebuliser, in the hope that it would remove anything which was stuck deep inside the lungs. We were given the medication to use with the nebuliser, but the medical practice said that we could only borrow a portable machine for two weeks and would need to buy our own machine. I had used one of these in hospital but in all honesty neither my wife or I knew anything about them apart from that. We took the machine home and the next day we asked the local chemists about where we could buy something like this. The chemists shop did buy them in but suggested that we looked on line. After searching the web we came to Evergreen Nebulisers, which was based in Wigan. My wife then rang up and spoke to one of the sales people, who were very supportive and helpful. The following week wife rang back to order out own machine, and it was delivered within 24 hours.

After using this nebulisers or 10 days I realised that I could breathe properly and was not coughing as much as I had been. I have now stopped using the machine for a while, because I have now got rid of most of the mucus and no longer sound like a pair of bagpipes with holes in the wrong place. I confess that I am truly amazed at the difference in my chest, and would recommend anyone with COPD to discuss getting one of these machines for home use. I would also highly recommend EverGreen Nebulisers, because they are so helpful and supportive.

Ken is a wonderful gentleman who battles with multiple medical conditions including COPD and uses an InnoSpire Deluxe. You can read how Ken remains positive and follow his blog here: Living well with Lewy Body Dementia and Comorbidities.

Glassesandbook

Kate

We have known Kate for many years, she is an experienced nebuliser user and we're always grateful for her feedback but she still admits to making one of the Top Ten Common Mistakes!

Boiling bits!
I made the expensive mistake of boiling dry two Omron meshes! I though the meshes were dirty, it was the neb unit in the end! Oooops!

Regarding nebs, People often demand home nebs because they have had quick relief in A&E or at the doctors. They think they are the bee's knees, BUT they should only be prescribed for home use if all else fails, E.G you spend half your life in hospital, need them for regular maintenance, have brittle asthma that deteriorates rapidly AND have a good protocol written by their consultant.
I have strict instructions, if two nebs don't work, it is 999 and my epipen being brittle. It also gives me some quality of life. I use it regularly as well.

I have always purchased my own neb machines, as you say, it frees up resources locally. Plus having a decent Omron Microair has enabled me to travel to far flung places again e.g The Falklands and Ascension Island.

The Pocket Rocket

Phil Johnson is the Chairman of the 20-20 Voice Cancer appeal. Phil's message highlights exactly why they can be so beneficial but also comes with a word of caution!

Hi there folks, Well, as many of you probably know I bought one of the Omron MicroAir U22 portable nebulisers as I am one of those people that suddenly get 'caught short' when out and about! No, not due to the call of nature but due to shortness of breath which can be embarrassing when in company and downright frightening at any time. Hence I bought a couple of these handy little gizmo's, one for myself and one for any "20-20 Voice" Cancer Appeal members that might need to take one on holiday for 'out and about' days. I've used mine on several occasions but I'll give you a perfect example of the uses for these little pocket nebulisers:-
Last week we went out for a family meal to celebrate my wife's birthday and we took the "Pocket Rocket" with us, just as well as the restaurant was supremely busy, thus food arrivals somewhat slow. But despite that we had a good old natter/catch up and once the starters had been dispensed with the 'mains' quickly followed. Granted, i had to go outside for some fresh air (I call it my 'non fag-break') while others enjoyed their cigarettes as the restaurant started to feel 'stuffy' to me. Now I know that all fellow 'larys' will understand what I mean by stuffy so I won't elaborate on that.

The party broke up about 10:15 and my wife and I agreed that 10 minutes on the "Pocket Rocket" in the car would be ideal before I drove home. There we were, armed with nebules of salbutamol, Budesonide & Saline solutions, quickly rigged everything up and off we went - for 2 minutes! The batteries went dead. We looked at each other horrified, neither of us had thought to put in spare batteries 'just in case'; as Del-boy would say, "What a pair of plonkers!" He would have been right too. As it happened the couple of minutes had done enough for me to drive the couple of miles home so all was sorted in the end but the point of my little note to you all out there is simple: even if you think it's the most obvious thing in the world, when you are out and and about with your own little "Pocket Rocket" check everything - especially that you have spare batteries! :-D

I call my portable nebuliser the "Pocket Rocket" because of the power & speed it emits the much needed vapours!
Rocket

Brittle Asthma

We are enormously grateful for this contribution from Wendy. You can follow her blog here: My Journey, Every Step of the Way.

If anyone had said at 23 years old, I would be battling lung disease and reliant on a cocktail of medications just to stay stable, I probably would have laughed at them. Maybe looking back, I could have done more with my life while I could, but as a university student who had just moved out and started on a new track, I was all about enjoying myself and partying like a rock star.

Although I have had asthma for most of my life, things really started to kick off and get worse when I was around 21 years old. I had been unwell with a cold at the time and was noticing that I was getting more breathless and wheezing more than I ever had. By the March, I was so poorly with pneumonia in both of my lungs and was told that I was lucky to be alive. This triggered a long string of hospital admissions, some requiring some lengthy stays, long term prednisolone and becoming a regular visitor to my GP surgery.

I began treatment at the Heart of England NHS Trust, in their specialist Chest Clinics and Severe Brittle Asthma Unit. I was started on a home nebuliser. My nebuliser is such a lifesaver and has meant that I have been spending more time at home rather than in hospital. I have my Freeway which sits by my bed, and it is so reliable and has helped me in so many ways. I carry with me my Omron Micro-air which has become my best friend. I really am able to have an active and enjoyable quality of life.

One piece of advice I would offer to anyone else who is struggling and feels as though they need extra help, I would really say be persistent. Don’t let anyone beat you down or tell you not to try, or ignore the symptoms of worsening asthma, it nearly cost me my life by being so flippant about it.

If you have a similar experience, I'm sure Wendy would love to hear from you through her blog.

Explore further

These are just a few of the stories told to us by our customers. Many write their own blogs in order to help others and raise awareness of how they manage their medical conditions in their daily lives.

Mark is one such example. You can read about his experiences with asthma and the InnoSpire Go here: Asthmablog1971

Or have a look at Russell Winwood. Russ has incredible adventures despite having COPD. His inspiring website is here: COPD Athlete

Further reading is available here from Healthline's list of the Best COPD Blogs of the Year.

I hope these stories have helped you to feel that you're not alone and there are lots of people that would be more than happy to help. Feel free to connect to anyone mentioned here and if you need us then please get in touch.

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Photo credits: Dariusz Sankowski, Tiago Muraro, SpaceX.