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Asthma and cycling /Any sports specialist you can recommend

  • 24-01-2022 10:10am
    Registered Users Posts: 796 ✭✭✭

    Hi Boardies .

    Can any one recommend a cycling/sports specialist that deals with Asthma and cycling,

    I can cycle and train well until i hit the hills/Mountains then i get very wheezy and have to back off, i take Ventolin but i dont think its the right choice hence why i would like to speak to a specialist who has experience in sport and Asthma



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,285 ✭✭✭AmberGold

    Excercise induced Asthma is well within the capabilities of your GP. You may need a preventer in addition to your Ventolin.

    If you want a more thorough assessment and have at least €500 / €1000 to spend you could see a Pulmonologist who could refer you for an Excercise Induced Challenge where you get up on the bike and they periodically test your lung function.

    Any Pulmo could manage this, Prof Sean Gaine @ the Mater was the Irish Olympic Team doctor and is a cyclist himself.

    I have excercise induced asthma and despite the correct medication will always have some level of wheeze when the going gets tough. I ignore it.

  • Registered Users Posts: 9,359 ✭✭✭Macy0161

    I'd assume you'd need a referral from the GP anyway? fwiw, I also have exercise induced asthma - for the most part I just live with it. It's mainly when the pollen count is high that I use the inhaler (my immune system is an omnishambles, but nothing underlying from what any tests can find!)

  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 20,227 Mod ✭✭✭✭Weepsie

    There is a GP in custom house medical in the IFSC who once worked with Team Sky I believe. So he'd probably know

    His advice was, and it makes sense, don't take the ventolin if you're struggling etc, you take it before any sort of effort that might cause you to need it. Preventative. So if I'm hitting the hills, particularly in the cold weather, I'll take ventolin 10-15 mins before any bigger effort.

  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 20,227 Mod ✭✭✭✭Weepsie

  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 24,699 Mod ✭✭✭✭CramCycle

    Team Skys new recruit getting the excuses in early 🤣

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  • Registered Users Posts: 796 ✭✭✭ciarano

    Thank you all so much for the advice and info

  • Registered Users Posts: 310 ✭✭Dowee

    I've had asthma since I was a kid. It was very severe until properly diagnosed and treated with Ventolin and preventers like Becotide (I think the name has changed in more recent years). It eased a lot as I aged into sports induced asthma, which would be particularly bad in cold weather, especially as the season changed from autumn to winter. I would have to take Ventolin before going out running or cycling and sometimes during and I would get wheezy before going to bed.

    The rest of this post is my personal experience and not medical advice.

    About 7 or 8 years ago I went vegan (after about 15+ years being vegetarian). A while after I noticed my symptoms had all but disappeared. I waited for the first winter as a vegan to see if the same issues arose as previous years but they didn't.

    I have now not had a sports induced issue for years. Asthma had nothing to do with why I went vegan and I only learned of the supposed links between dairy and asthma after my symptoms disappeared and I started looking into it. It's a pretty controversial topic (especially in this country) and there seems to be plenty of research proving and disproving a link. All I'm sharing is my experience.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,332 ✭✭✭Daroxtar

    I have had asthma sonce childhood and the cold sometimes plays puck with it at times but the biggest change and improvement I had was when a doctor put me on Seretide. It meant I rarely ever have to take ventolin now on cycles although it is recommended to still carry it in case of an emergency. Maybe ask you GP about whether or not it is suitable for you.

  • Registered Users Posts: 24,984 ✭✭✭✭Wishbone Ash

    Great product (expensive but worth it). Since I was a teenager, I had been getting a prolonged bout of excessive coughing/wheezing every summer. Different GP's over the years prescribed anti-biotics which never seemed to work but the coughing/wheezing would eventually go away. I moved house a few years ago and changed GP. The new GP instantly diagnosed it as an allergy*, not an infection and prescribed Seretide. It's now gone in a couple of days.

    *I had multiple tests done to detect what was causing the allergy but it was never determined.

  • Registered Users Posts: 796 ✭✭✭ciarano

    Thanks everyone for the advice and info

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  • Registered Users Posts: 677 ✭✭✭ILIKEFOOD

    Do you only take ventolin? isn't that your go to when you are symtomatic.. are you not taking a preventative too (becotide).. I too am in the wheezy wheelers club.. I know my asthma is whole lot better when I am taking the becotide daily as one should be.

    The GP was recommending I try symbicort which is supposed to be very good but it's too pricey for me.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,235 ✭✭✭DaveyDave

    Interesting thread. I went to my GP in 2019 as I was struggling to get into running, anything more than a light jog had me out of breath almost immediately and I found myself being wheezy just going up the stairs. Cycling was the same, anything resembling a sprint or any proper climb had my lungs on overdrive to the point I'd have to stop. GP did blood tests, made me wear a blood pressure monitor for 48 hours and gave me a ventolin which did nothing.

    They sent me to A&E for an ECG and a few other tests along with a scratch test which was also negative. I got a 12 month prescription for a symbicort turbohaler and told my GP would follow up. They never did and I also found out prescriptions are only valid for 6 months so that was less than helpful. €250 worth of turbohalers and over €200 in GP visits for nothing, I left it at that. The doctor in the hospital suggested it could be exercise induced astmha but he genuinely had no idea and it seemed like the prescription was just to get me to go away. I even sat in some clear box and blew into a tube for some oxygen test. After all that, I'm surprised it was inconclusive.

    I am overweight but not once was it brought up by anyone, I'm sure it's definitely not helping. Fast forward to today, I'm fitter, can run 5k straight, improved steady efforts in cycling but still fairly wheezy and take a long time to recover for any hard intervals. Debating going back to the doctor...

    Post edited by DaveyDave on

  • Registered Users Posts: 796 ✭✭✭ciarano

    Hi Davey Dave,

    Thanks for the input

    I definitely think weight is a factor also a damp climate over the winter doesn't help ,

    I do also think inhalers can be prescribed very casually without further exploration first. especially as there are different types of medications ,

    Some good tips from all above

    Great to hear your doing well with the fitness :)