My story starts back in 2008. I started getting shortness of breath to a point where I had trouble doing stairs or any activity. I went to my primary doctor who said it was probably asthma. She referred me to a pulmonary doctor, who said is was asthma, and started me on pred and inhalers. My breathing did not get any better – in fact it got a lot worse. It was so bad that I could hardly talk. When I did stairs at home I would have to sit at the end of my bed for a half hour to catch my breath. I went back to my pulmonary doctor and told her my breathing was a lot worse. She did a bronchoscopy and discovered the tracheal stenosis. She then referred me to a specialist at Lahey clinic in Burlington Mass. The doctor went over and explained the disease more and scheduled a dilation for April of 2009. I was a good month away from my surgery when my breathing got a lot worse. I went to see my regular pulmonary doctor at her office at the Framingham hospital. She said she would inform the other doctor at Lahey and sent me on my way. On my way out of the the hospital I collapsed in the lobby because I could not breath. They then transferred me by ambulance to Lahey for emergency surgery. That was march 18th 2009.
I never forgot how scared I was and my doctors words. She said “we have a very dangerous situation” and that it would require surgery right away. She said she may have to trach me but she would try the dilation and see if it holds. It did – it was like taking a breath of fresh air. I’ve had four surgeries since then. I love my doctor at Lahey clinic. Her name is Dr Carla Lamb, she always puts me at ease. She calls to check in on me and I trust her whole-heartedly. I had my last surgery January 2nd 2013 but it did not go as well as the others. I was in the critical care unit for 5 days. Dr lamb said my throat was as bad as the first time she saw me. I’ve been seeing her once a month ever since. She wants me to talk with a surgeon at Mass general hospital. I don’t know if I want to take this step yet. I am scared to death of this surgery, I am still thinking about it. I may just stick with Dr Lamb for now and just continue with the dilations.