From the Archives
15 months Intubation Free!

15 months Intubation Free!

It feels good to brag about something positive for a change. This week marks 15 whole months since Ive had to have a tube shoved down my windpipe in order to breath. Ive had zero, what I would call "critical condition" type hospitalizations in that time period as well. Granted, ...

Read More

The Recovery phases of a severe asthma exacerbation

Suffice it to say, I wasn't exactly a happy camper when I wrote that Dr W helped me get through this awful time by reassuring me that what anguish I was experiencing was a normal response after suffering such a severe flare up, and that my complaints were ...

Read More

Do you know when it’s time to go in?

Do you know when it's time to go in?

The idea for this post came to me during the middle a recent severe exacerbation. Actually, it was the same exacerbation that put me in the hospital for 12 days, for which I am still recovering. Foremost on my mind during one of these really bad flares is the ...

Read More

Asthma guilt trip

Asthma guilt trip

How many times have you had a really bad asthma flare, but had serious trepidations about going to the emergency room for treatment? How many times have you felt guilty that maybe you weren't sick enough to be admitted to the hospital? Well, that's pretty much been the ...

Read More

Double Whammy Asthma

Double Whammy Asthma

( updated 2-2014) I often find it frustrating that here I am, a life long asthmatic, a Respiratory therapist and an asthma educator, yet still unable in normal conversation, to describe what makes my type of asthma so different from others. When asked to define asthma in general, I usually ...

Read More

I’m a recovering  Albuter-holic

I'm a recovering Albuter-holic

Rick, the author of the Respiratory Therapy Cave , wrote to me the other day talking about what it was like growing up with severe asthma. One of the things he mentioned that I thought was kinda funny, was how he used to sleep with an inhaler ...

Read More

My Trip to Churchill

My Trip to Churchill

My journey begins in Winnipeg (my very first time crossing the Canadian border). Just 2 days earlier there had been a pretty bad snow storm and potential weather delays at the airport were a big concern.Fortunately things worked out and I got there on time without any problems. ...

Read More

Lung Lingo

Yes it's true, we asthmatics have a language all our own.   Here's my current list. Please feel free to add new words and definitions to it .   Yellow Zoning When someone is stuck in their yellow breathing zone. Cradle Asthmatic A person who has had asthma since earlier childhood or ...

Read More

Healing Walks

Healing Walks

Carolyn Scott Kortge's new book is finally out and guess who's in one of the chapters? Carolyn contacted me about year ago for this project. She thought I had an interesting story to tell, and that it would fit in nicely with the motivational theme of the book. It's really ...

Read More

My New Old Passion

My New Old Passion

It's actually not a new passion, more like the reigniting of an on again, off again love affair Ive had since early childhood. I'm referring of course to the bass guitar, or for that matter any other heavy string instrument. My introduction into the world of making music actually ...

Read More

Boston 2011 Race Report

Boston 2011 Race Report

They don't call it the best marathon in the world for nothing , and this year was no exception. The weather was near perfect and the spectators and volunteers outdid themselves. The moment I entered athletes village and the disabled athletes staging area early Monday morning, my worries and stress about ...

Read More

Propofol

Propofol

This is a picture of me on a ventilator last year during a severe asthma exacerbation ( what they call status asthmaticus). See the little IV bottle inside the blue rectangle with the milky looking stuff inside ? That's Propofol ! Also known as ...

Read More

The SARP experience

The SARP experience

Welcome to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania for the

Read More

Lung Transplant Evaluation Approved.

It's been way too long since I posted to my blog. Been doing most of my updating via my asthma support group on Facebook. So anyways, after 6 months of going around and around with the insurance company, they have finally agreed to pay for a full lung transplant evaluation. ...

Read More

Buried Alive

Buried Alive

The photo is from the movie "Awake", but what happened to me last September was not fiction.. It was the real deal I'll share with you now, what I couldn't 9 months ago because of pending legal action. Ive since withdrawn my lawsuit against the parties involved and am ...

Read More

A quarter million puffs

A quarter million puffs

Care for some Albuterol? (Hey.....how did the primatine mist get in there?) I sometimes jokingly claim that Ive

Read More

Questions for Dr. Wenzel

Questions for Dr. Wenzel

Last week after finding out just how damaged my lungs really are, the only thing going through my head was..WHY? All of the assumptions I had made about my asthma throughout the years, suddenly didn't seem to make sense anymore. I was beginning to wonder if ...

Read More

6 times a day

I had planned to write a post about my nebulizer treatment routine, but then I thought....what the heck,  I'll just video it! Its  spontaneous , unedited and kinda lame, but it's the real deal and it's what I have to do at least 6 times a day. ( recorded on 1-28-2009) ...

Read More

Asthma Breathing Zones

Asthma Breathing Zones

This is the 2nd installment of my " Breathing, the mini series". This one is more for the non-asthmatics out there, but I think some of our lung challenged friends might learn a thing or two as well. If you hang around asthmatics or browse as many personal asthma blogs ...

Read More

RBB
Written by

Dear Blackie Fish (1997-2013)

Dear Sampson, aka Blackie Fish ( nicknamed for his long black fur and star shaped paws), You were the awkward stepchild, the middle child of 2 other cats who shared our home. We adopted you from a cat rescue in Woodland California in 1999 when you were 2 years old. We suspected you came from […]

September 26, 2013 4
asthma pnenotypes
Written by

Asthma Phenotypes

Physician researchers at the University of Pittsburgh Asthma Institute at UPMC are now using molecular and genetic information to identify asthma phenotypes and customize therapies in order to improve patient outcomes. If you have asthma and would like to contribute to this on going research, please consider volunteering for

September 19, 2013 0
100_5520
Written by

Tour De Badass YVR

“Badassmatic (adj.): Person with asthma better defined by badassery. Possesses insatiable desire for growth, change and adventure.“ ( Brought to you courtesy of Kerri Mac Kay) ***For more Badass adventures check out last years trip to Churchill *** Related Posts: Guest Post by Kerri Asthma Phenotypes24 Hours in the life of an AsthmaticSelf Service What’s […]

August 26, 2013 2
atrium
Written by

Hotelspital

For those of you who thought I was kidding…No, it’s not a hotel, it’s my hospital. But the poshness doesn’t end there. The information counter at the front entrance looks more like the registration desk at a 5 star Hotel, and occasionally you’ll find a chamber orchestra playing in one of many the sitting areas […]

July 29, 2013 6
intubation
Written by

15 months Intubation Free!

It feels good to brag about something positive for a change. This week marks 15 whole months since Ive had to have a tube shoved down my windpipe in order to breath. Ive had zero, what I would call “critical condition” type hospitalizations in that time period as well. Granted, I’m still ending up in […]

July 17, 2013 4
Written by

Itemized Hospital Bill for Asthma Exacerbation

Well, the hospital bills have reached new levels of absurdity. I thought my medical bills from a few years back were crazy, but this one takes the cake. I particularity like the $1900 charge for an Advair inhaler ( listed as “FLUTICAS/SALMETER INH 500/50″) on the bill, and $900 for Fluticasone nasal spray( ie Flonase). […]

June 15, 2013 4
kerri vid
Written by

24 Hours in the life of an Asthmatic

Check out Kerri’s vlog post and follow us through a typical day living with asthma. Related Posts:Asthma Phenotypes Guest Post by Kerri 12 month Update The letterBehind that finish line smile Bound for Beantown#97 , misinformation and a virus from Hell

May 31, 2013 1
Sally Interview
Written by

Dupilumab , A Game Changer ?

When I heard the news today that there’s a new drug in the pipeline for severe asthma, I about fell out of my chair. When you hear one of the world’s most respected asthma researchers proclaiming that this new drug is a “game changer”, you can’t help but feel a little more optimistic about the […]

May 23, 2013 3
tumblr_inline_mmdqi3OCJW1qz4rgp
Written by

How to run like a severe asthmatic, by Bill Swan

Saw this blog post by Bill Swan and liked it so much I just had to re-post it here. Bill provides us with a step by step instruction guide on how to run like a severe asthmatic. ( I think the photo says it all, don’t you?) Read more about Bill on his blog at […]

May 14, 2013 1
100_5282
Written by

Plan B

Yesterday I completed my final “test” walk in a series of trial walks that started a month ago to see if training for a future marathon might be doable. The plan was to do the Portland marathon this October ( my 3rd time) and then hopefully obtain a qualifying time to enter Boston in 2014 […]

May 6, 2013 0
Bubble house
Written by

Just call me Bubble Boy.

Exposure to this …… And this…. Is there anything Im not allergic too? I think I need to live in one of these… So two hospitalization in just two months has me and my Pulmonologists scratching our heads as to what it is that keeps causes my asthma to spiral out of control so often. […]

April 30, 2013 4
bipap machine
Written by

Self Service

Just one of the advantages of being an asthmatic Respiratory Therapist, though the hospital staff might not be so thrilled. They get a little grouchy when the patients start adjusting ventilator settings Now for the serious educational part: The rational for using non -invasive bipap therapy during a severe asthma exacerbations is simply to reduce […]

April 8, 2013 8
486132_10200330977669936_670549033_n
Written by

Musical friends hard at work

My friend Don is up for a Juno award next month. Couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy. If you haven’t yet, check out his music 2013 has also been a really busy year for friend and bass mentor Rick Shaw. He just completed an 8 show tour in Japan with the Gordon Goodman’s Big […]

March 27, 2013 2
Page 2 of 48«123456»...Last »

Got Asthma?

Volunteer as a Research Subject
for the
Severe Asthma Research Program
Need more info? Contact me

Get Involved

Most frequently asked question

"Can you have an asthma attack with a normal sat reading"?
The answer is..YES!
While it's a little unusual to see a person with a perfect O2 sat of a 100% during a severe exacerbation, its pretty typical to see sats in the 94-97% range. The reason for this, is that asthma is a disease of the airways , not the alveoli where gas exchange takes place. Most asthmatics dont desaturate during the early stages of an attack,unless theres a secondary problem such as pneumonia. You have to be extremely ill with asthma if your sats are low.

Racewalking

Winston