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E- 11

My husband was diagnosed in December of 2004 with emphysema after he had a heart attack. He worked in a strip mine for 26 years but he also smoked since he was 9 years old. So now he is 50 years old and is on oxygen 24/7 (up to 4 liters) We have been married for 11 years and the way things are going now we may never see our 12 year anniversary. Tonight he is suffering with coughing uncontrollably, short of breath, feels rundown and very sick with flu like symptoms, He is wheezing very loudly and I am staying awake to watch him in case I may need to call an ambulance to take him to the hospital again.
Anyone who wants to talk please contact me,  Sadieohio356@aol.com



I am a 32 yr old woman i have 3 step children and a 5 yr old daughter. My husband is 46 and has been a smoker for 20 some yrs. My husband is the type of person who don't go to drs for nothing but he recently came to me and said he wasn't feeling well and needed to go, to my utter surprise I made him a appt, i new he was ill. He was complaining of chest pains and was coughing like there was no tomorrow and was saying his left arm was going numb a lot and he had chronic fatigue was sleeping every chance he got, also couldn't breathe well and had a hard time swallowing, took him to the drs they did an abundance of tests the doc said his lungs where clear but he could have the worse emphysema and his lungs would be clear, he wakes himself up coughing cause he is choking and cant breathe scares me to death, he has had this cough for 2 yrs and has just recently gotten worse he is a 2+ pack smoker maybe more a day. we just got married in Jan but have been together a lot longer he is the man of my dreams and I thing I will loose him to cancer he wont quit smoking tell we no for sure  when the test come back in a week I don't think I can wait that long. his dad just died last Dec to this terrible disease, you think he would stop, please people don't wait to stop, this doesn't only hurt you, it hurts everyone around you.......SLE



Hi.  This is my story.  Today, with my dad and the Hospice Coordinator, we had to tell my mom what I am sure she already knew...you will be able to go home with 24/7 care, you won't be able to get up and walked to the bathroom, you will have to use the "potty chair" next to the bed if your ox level doesn't go too low...etc, etc...end stage emphysema.  They told me her oxygen levels are so high she will have to most likely be on "liquid" ox.  I watched as tears came to my usually "unemotional" father. 
My mom smoked for as long as I can remember (I am 45 years old) and before that she smoked for a long time.  I remember her telling me stories about during the war they couldn't get cigarettes &/or papers to roll their own so they use to use the paper from paper bags.  
Her lung collapsed about 7 years ago, the doctor told her then you have a "spot" on your lung.  She quit smoking then and has been on oxygen ever since.  That is when I quit smoking.  My siblings all said well it won't be long now, but I said don't bet on it, she may live a lot longer than you think.  My uncle, well 3 uncles, from both sides of the family have died from Emphysema.  My grandpa and another uncle died from black lung.  So it's been in the family.
There are eight of us children, and only two never smoked.  I quit.  My sister died this August of cancer &/or a fungus (?), she smoked for many years. My brother died about 5 years ago, he was a two pack a day, at least, but he got meningitis (sorry about the spelling it's late)...sometimes I wonder if his immune system would have been able to fight it better if.....but....who knows.  And another of my sisters is a smoker and my oldest brother is an x-smoker now.
This is going to be hard to do, watch my mom slowly die.  The doc's say her heart is good, but the stress from her lungs is weakening it.  Sometimes I wish her heart wasn't so good...a heart attack has got to be easier than slowly suffocating to death.  I'm guessing that that's what will eventually kill her.  But nobody has really said that and that's how I found this website.  I wanted to know what to expect as it progresses. 
My heart is so sad for her and for the people I have read about on this website...I will be praying for all of us.
Well, this is our family's story.  I am thinking I will go have an x-ray of my own lungs...my younger brother told me that there was a spot on his lung some time ago, yet he still smokes...it feels like my heart is breaking....they think oh so what you got to die sometime, and this is true but the quality of life for people with Emphysema is.. well I guess anyone who reads this already knows.  
Well, thanks for "listening".  Very sincerely, CK.


I'm severe-end-stage emphysema, on oxygen 24/7 for four years. I'm now 48 years old and waiting for a "right" lung transplant. My Mother died one week past her 46th birthday, my dad when he was 59, my mother's father from lung disease when he was 62, her brother in his 60's and her sister in her 50's.

So, why did I keep smoking? Because I was smarter than they were, they didn't have the timing right, they didn't know when to quit. I wasn't going to be that stupid! I was going to when to quit, after all I'd been around it enough, right?

So here I am, putting my family through hell, I only wish I had the guts to call an end to it, now. Sure, my family would have some rough days, but soon it would be in the past. But I can't do that, I guess I deserve the cards that are dealt me, now I just have to learn to play the hand. I also am somewhat bitter, at times, because I worked very hard, a divorced Mother of two that raised her kids without the gov't assistance, worked 6-7 days a week, was never a partyier or drinker, went to church, lived a clean life, but I did love my cigarettes.

This addiction knows no social status, no education, etc,,,, it crosses all lines. I even know a heart-transplant surgeon that smokes, a well-respected lawyer that smoked in her office, while on oxygen. We definitely are all Nicotine Victims.
 L. Cascade, Mt.

(E103) Hi,
My name is J. T., I am 54 year's old, been married going on 38 yrs. I am a mother of 2,also a grandma, with 3 grandsons. I have "Severe End Time Emphysema"-under Oxygen 24 hours a day.

I can't walk to the bathroom, without gasping for air! I have prayed many times for God to Please take me, because this is a Horrible Hell on Earth! I have heard that cancer is painful but usually it is all over in a few months, but Emphysema lasts for years. Have you ever seen a fish, out of the water, gasping and gasping, it opens its mouth wider and wider trying to get a little more air, until it finally dies. Not So, with Emphysema, it takes a long while!

I started smoking, back in the 50's and smoked until Feb, 17th 1995
I saw the sexy ladies smoking and thought" I want to be like her" well
here I am 40+years later, and can't walk across a room, without gasping for air!

There is never a minute, that I don't feel the pain, and YES!YES! they
should PAY US!! not the Governors or whoever, they are not the ones, who are PAYING Double, We paid for the cigarettes, and now we are paying Dr's and Medicine plus being in pain, plus being so Severely Intimidated, by the Dr's.

I could go on and on, but I think you have the idea. If there is any thing I can do to help, please let me know. Sincerely; J. T. (GA)

(E104) Hello,

I was pleased with your information on the web. Yes I would like to
share my story and my dead father's story.

My dad started smoking when he was 14 years old. He raised tobacco in Kentucky both as a child with his father and then as an adult with my help. My dad smoked not less than three packs of Pall Mall daily from as long as I could remember. I smoke as a teen on a couple of occasions to be in the group but it always made me sick.

In 1967 I joined the Navy avoiding my draft number and having to go in the Army. While in Boot Camp if you did not smoke you did not get a break. Thus to get a break from work, cleaning barracks, showers, etc. I joined in the smoking crowd. You didn't really have to smoke, just being in the room with 80 other guys smoking with no ventilation was a sure fix.

One day while in boot camp I was caught with a book of matches at my watch inspection. Another young man had cigarettes on him. The company commander pass the word over the barracks sound system that he wanted at least a pack of cigarettes from every smoker in the barracks. This barracks had four floors with not less than 80 men on each floor. They all responded by bringing the cigarettes requested to the QuarterDeck where this other young man and I were to stand watch. The company commanders opened each pack and poured them out onto a table in a room 6X8 feet. He placed two chairs at this table and two zippo lighters. He then had me and this guy go in and gave us 20 minutes to smoke ever cigarette on the table. At the end of the 20 minutes both of us were on the edge of puking and our eyes where on fire as well as our mouth. The smoke was so thick that neither of us could even see each other.

Well you would think this would cause anyone to stop smoking forever. Wrong, it just set me up to fall into the addiction hands of nicotine. I continued to smoke until 1974. My doctor showed me a copy of my lungs. They were black as coal. I was having chest pain and had gone in to have myself checked out.

At this time I was involved in a church that the pastor wanted me to work on the bus ministry. To do this I had to be a non-smoker. So all this together with my wife on me constantly to stop I sit out on the road to do it. I quit smoking at least 100 times over a period of five years. So I really continued to smoke up until around 1979/80. I finally was able to quit smoking by using smokeless tobacco. I was smoking three packs of Marlboro's a day. I started using a can of Skoal a day. I did this up until 1995.

When I finally had determined my hiding my drug of nicotine was just as bad as alcoholic's I was working with were hiding their alcohol.. So with a great deal of prayer and the help of the Lord I have not used smokeless tobacco now for 3 years. BUT, I now use NON TOBACCO mint and do this as much as a can a week. So the psychological addiction is still alive and well in my body. I know today that if someone tied me up and got a Marlboro cigarettes in my mouth and I got one drag off of it I would want the carton when they cut me lose.

I am a recovering alcoholic (22 years one day at a time). It was ten times harder for me to stop using nicotine than it was alcohol. My alcohol addiction was at its height when I quit (I could and did drink a case of beer and a 1/5 of Rum on nearly a daily basis). If I didn't have the money or could not borrow it from you then I would drink wine.

Now my Dad. After I quit (smoking) not nicotine, but my family thought I had quit tobacco completely, I began to preach to my Dad. He told me that he could quit anytime he wanted to. Well this happened in 1981. He was rolled back into his hospital room with tubes in both lungs, emphysema,
three valve by-pass, oxygen mask on his face.

My brother and I were standing at the foot of his bed and he reached over on his nightstand and picked up his pack of cigarettes. He then removed the mask and crushed the cigarettes in his hand and threw them with what little strength he had at Mike and I. Stating as the cigarettes were in flight, "I told you I could quit anytime I wanted to." He lived until 1995. His death was tobacco related as his lungs were so eaten up with nicotine that they would get holes in them and he finally died from them just going flat with holes in them.

I now have six children and two of them are smokers, my oldest 24-year-old boy and my third son 20-year-old. Neither can see any harm that it will be to them.

Please keep the messages flowing if we save one person from this horrible disease/death it will be worth it all. Respectfully, R. W.

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