It occurred to me that these are all terms many alphas and their loved ones might not be famaliar with. Although, symtomatic & A symtomatic are genereric terms used in any number of medical conditions. I am going to use it as it pertains to alpha1.
Symtomatic = you tested positive for alpha1 and it is actively working away causing deteriaiton of health in the form of liver brochiectsis(sp?), elevated liver enzymes, drops in lung function
A Symtomatic = Well you've tested positive to alpha1. You could be MZ,SZ,ZZ, Nullnull. Your lung funtion is good. Your basically able to continue on skipping through life.
Unfortunately some have the misconception that because you are a "carrier" of alpha1 you will never be effected by it.
I. E. SZ usually are liver effected however I know one who is not but, is on a Transplant(TX) list for lungs.
It wasn't until I went to the third pulmonologist that I was shown & given a flutter valve AKA: Acapella. The flutter valve has reeds in it and you blow into it and they send vibrations back into your lungs that are supposed to help bring up trapped mucous. Mine has a knob on it to vary the vibration. I don't know how others are but, I can tell you they do help.
I am definitely not a dr and I reccomend if you have questions about these things discuss them with a doctor. If he or she doesn't want to answer your questions either ask another doctor or find a different doctor who will answer your "dumb questions". The only dumb thing is the thing you didn't ask.
The Top10 Things You Should Do If You Test Positive For Alpha1
- Have A List Of Questions When You See a Doctor About Your Alpha1(If you try to remember the questions you want to ask you may forget half of them)
- Learn To Breathe Effectively
- Limit Or Eliminate Your Alcohol Consumption
- Don't Be Afraid To Be Proactive About Your Alpha1
- Get Plenty Of Rest(You will likely have a higher oxygenation level)
- Avoid Sick People(You have a lower immune system than most people)
- Drink Plenty Of Water
- Eat Healthy/Avoid Processed Food(Carbonated beverages)
- Start A Careful Exercise Program/Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program(Your muscles will become more efficient so they won't use as much oxygen and if you have surgery you will likely recover quicker as well)
- Stop Smoking