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Old 01-30-07, 05:36 PM   #1
Eatadonut
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EIA: what to do?

This is me (I'm even a little jewish).

Does anyone else have these problems - not really shortness of breath, I think even on half capacity my lungs will outblow most people , but the coughing and congestion. I'm still coughing, and it's been 20 minutes since I got off the bike.

Mostly, I want to know if anyone else who has this problem has been treated (read: drugged) for it, and how much it helps. I hate going to doctors, and I hate medications even more, but if it will let me do more than 20 miles at a time, I'd snort, inhale, or swallow whatever they hand me.
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Old 01-30-07, 09:19 PM   #2
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I've been diagnosed with EIA.

I have two inhalers. One is something like Ventilin ... it is fast acting, but short-lived. Good for emergency situations. The other is Seravent ... slow-acting, but long-lived. Good for my long distance rides.

My EIA started harmlessly enough with coughing and congestion after cycling in cold weather ....... and escalated to hyperventilation and near-fainting during most cycling events that were in any way remotely strenuous. That was when I got the inhalers.

Interesting thing ... it has continued to escalate to the point now where any stress (not just exercise) will trigger an attack. I've had attacks during public speaking events. So I always carry my inhalers now.
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Old 01-30-07, 10:24 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eatadonut
This is me (I'm even a little jewish).

Does anyone else have these problems - not really shortness of breath, I think even on half capacity my lungs will outblow most people , but the coughing and congestion. I'm still coughing, and it's been 20 minutes since I got off the bike.

Mostly, I want to know if anyone else who has this problem has been treated (read: drugged) for it, and how much it helps. I hate going to doctors, and I hate medications even more, but if it will let me do more than 20 miles at a time, I'd snort, inhale, or swallow whatever they hand me.
I had that 5 or 6 years ago, before I really got into cycling. I didn't feel that bad, but I just couldn't work out the way I wanted to. I got an inhaler from my doctor, and used it for about 6 weeks, and after that point I didn't need it.

I've never had problems since I started cycling.
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Old 01-31-07, 07:18 AM   #4
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Yup. Gotta hit the albuterol before riding in weather below 60 degrees F. As well, my EIA can be triggered by seasonal allergies in Spring and Fall so I control those with Allegra and Singulair and a corticosteroid inhaler. Too much fun.

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Old 01-31-07, 12:24 PM   #5
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Another yes here:

47 years old, a physician and never knew I had it. You don't like meds, but my inhaler is a God send.

In retrospect, I've had symptoms since childhood, but never severe enough to need medical attention, just tight, short of breath feeling with associated anxiety. I thought it was anxiety making my breathing difficult, but it was the other way around. In retrospect, being a distance runner through HS and college I had developed a method of breathing to compensate for the tightness in my lungs but reduced the amount of air I could move; I increased the resistance through my mouth to be able to force the air in and out. With a couple of hits of the inhaler before vigorous exercise I can open my mouth widely and breathe freely now.

The symptoms are associated with exercise, cold air and stress, as was already mentioned.

Even if you don't like meds, treatment will improve your cycling significantly.
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Old 01-31-07, 02:27 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Kadowaki
I increased the resistance through my mouth to be able to force the air in and out.
A method wind instrument players (like myself) and singers use to increase lung power & capacity. I'm not surprised it helped - I hadn't thought to try it on the bike.

Thanks guys, I think I'll make an appointment. Now that I've gotten the proper amount of internet advice, of course - what kind of self-medicater would I be if I didn't get internet help before seeing a live professional?
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Old 01-31-07, 10:15 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eatadonut
This is me (I'm even a little jewish).

Does anyone else have these problems - not really shortness of breath, I think even on half capacity my lungs will outblow most people , but the coughing and congestion. I'm still coughing, and it's been 20 minutes since I got off the bike.

Mostly, I want to know if anyone else who has this problem has been treated (read: drugged) for it, and how much it helps. I hate going to doctors, and I hate medications even more, but if it will let me do more than 20 miles at a time, I'd snort, inhale, or swallow whatever they hand me.
Based upon the symptoms posted you should be seeing a doctor anyways as this isn't normal for a person with normal respiratory health.

That being said I'm diagnosed COPD. I regulary (daily dose) take Pulmicort and Servent just to stay out of trouble, and believe me I've been in trouble. Yes they help and if I've skipped a dose I can feel the difference when I get the next dose. Every ride starts with two hits of Albueterol and then it comes with me just in case. These are regulated drugs for a reason and not to be self medicated.

edit: just read your last post, thank you.

Last edited by ryder47; 01-31-07 at 10:35 PM.
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Old 02-01-07, 07:41 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eatadonut
A method wind instrument players (like myself) and singers use to increase lung power & capacity. I'm not surprised it helped - I hadn't thought to try it on the bike.

Thanks guys, I think I'll make an appointment. Now that I've gotten the proper amount of internet advice, of course - what kind of self-medicater would I be if I didn't get internet help before seeing a live professional?

It helped overcome the tight lungs from EIA but decreased the amount of air I could move (flow inversely related to resistance) so I was able to improve the amount of air I moved significantly with an inhaler and breathing without that reistance. Wind instrumentalists and singers use this to support hitting the high notes, but their goal is not the highest possible minute ventilation.
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