I asked this but I posted in the wrong section. So I am reposting here.
Hello. I am new here. I was recently diagnosed with asthma copd overlap syndrome (ACOS) and am trying to understand what that means.
I am 54 and very active. I smoked for a few years in my 20s, though I grew up around heavy smokers. I had severe allergies as a child and got allergy shots for a number of years, but I was never diagnosed with asthma.
A few months ago, I noticed I was getting out of breath when exercising. Not always, but sometimes I would get winded doing things that should be no problem.
My cat scan was normal. Exercise stress test was very good. But pulmonary function test showed mild obstruction and mildly reduced DLCO.
Fev1 was 88%, 98% pb
Fev1/fvc 81%, 88% pb
My pulmonologist believes I have had asthma most of my life. As a result of chronic, uncontrolled asthma, combined with a smoking history, I have developed copd. He also said something about people of tall, thin stature being more susceptible because their lungs are looser. According to him, if I can get the asthma under control the copd will not progress.
I don't understand the diagnosis. Wouldn't know if I had asthma, especially as someone who is always active and very outdoorsy? I have not been particularly prone to respiratory illness. I do have bad allergies, but have never wheezed or had what I would call an asthma attack. And based on what I've read, my numbers don't look like copd territory. Is it the low DLCO that suggests copd? Or that my FEV1 only improved 11% and not the established 12 % post bronchial dialator? I also don't understand how, lacking radiologic evidence of airway disease, the term "chronic" can be applied based on one pulmonary test. Finally, I do not understand why my pulmonologist says my lung disease is not progressive, when everything I read about ACOS says it is worse than copd alone.
Can anyone help me understand?