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hopeful health news

This is a public post. I am once again on Prednisone and antibiotics--third infection in two months. The pulmonologist's office called again this morning with some interesting info.

IgE is a natural substance found in your body that may play a major role in your asthma. It works by binding to allergens and then triggering the release of chemicals that can cause inflammation. When you are exposed to allergens, like dust or pets, this can cause 2 things to happen:

  • Constriction of the airways—the muscles that surround the airways in your lungs begin to tighten
  • Inflammation of the airways—your airways become irritated and swell up

Together, constriction and inflammation of the airways make it harder for you to breathe. This can lead to an asthma attack.

So let's say you're taking your asthma medications the way you should. And you’re doing everything you can to control your asthma. Unfortunately, you still might experience symptoms like wheezing and chest tightness—all because of something your body makes on its own.

My IgE level is high--I need to get the number. He wants to try me on Xolair to bring it down, and he thinks this will reduce my infection rate. He said that some people have gone from having six or eight infections a year to few or none. It would be a welcome thing to just have a little cold like the rest of the world instead of being sick for weeks on end every time. I don't really expect to be free of viral infections; but if my problem is an overactive immune system, who knows what my normal response to infections should be.

The side effect profile looks acceptable compared to other meds I am taking. However, it can take some time to experience improvement. Still, this is a hopeful piece of information.

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
jenandbronze
Dec. 30th, 2008 05:02 pm (UTC)
Good luck and I hope it works for you!
(Deleted comment)
nabba
Dec. 30th, 2008 06:13 pm (UTC)
Good luck :) I'm sharing this with my mum, the stuff about the IgE
kindletheflame
Dec. 30th, 2008 06:34 pm (UTC)
Isn't IgE the same thing they test when they do blood tests to find whether you're allergic to specific things?
3kitties
Dec. 30th, 2008 06:54 pm (UTC)
IgE
Yup.
slyfoot
Dec. 31st, 2008 02:33 pm (UTC)
Good luck with the meds.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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Sarah Blake LaRose
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