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Sam’s Story

SamMy name is Sam and I was diagnosed with asthma at the age of 3 months. I was diagnosed so early because my brother and Mum are both asthmatic and I had fallen ill with bronchiolitis. According to my Mum I was a happy smiling baby but unfortunately, I was in and out of hospital a lot. When I started school, I found it difficult to keep up with my classmates and missed a lot of school. However, I was taught at the hospital by a lovely teacher so I never fell behind. As a result of all the hard work and dedication I have passed all of my GCSE’s at A and B grades.

I have been under the care of the RVI for 11 years and have developed strong bonds with the doctors and nurses who are just exceptional. They have always made sure that I understand what each of the medication does which they put me on and what it actually meant to have asthma. As a result, I have a greater understanding what to do in case of an asthma attack through my asthma plan.

When I was in year 10 I had a massive asthma attack at school. It started all of a sudden with no signs. The teachers were not trained in dealing with an asthma attack of this scale. I didn’t have my spacer with me at the time however I did have my blue inhaler. It seemed forever before the ambulance came but it was only 5 minutes. I remember the look on my best friend Megan’s face while she was trying to comfort me, it was pure shock but the adrenaline of the situation kept her going and kept me calm. Megan has always looked after me when I’m ill and is always there to get someone to help in that situation. I honestly wouldn’t know what I would do without her she is my rock and is very important to me. I was off school for 2 weeks after that and I was looking forward to getting back to see all of my friend. Before I returned back to school my asthma nurse visited the school to give all of the teacher’s guidance on what to do if this was to happen again. Unfortunately, it did happen again but my year manager knew what to do straight away and coped with it well and kept me calm.

I now have injections every 2 weeks which has stabilised my asthma and I haven’t had an attack for 2 years! My advice to anyone who is struggling to cope with their asthma is to keep calm (I know it’s easier said than done) and to always take your medication and to carry a spacer and blue inhaler with you at all times. Also, always have a parent or carers number on speed dial!