I’ve fought tooth and nail to not do 7% saline aerosols, basically since the first time I sucked it down at least 2 years ago. It’s nasty! I’ve never been able to do a saltwater rinse after oral surgery, sinus rinses, or swallow seawater. I have a very strong reaction to such a high concentration of saline, almost a gag-reflex. My chest tightens, I start to salivate like there’s a porterhouse in front of me, and my chest tightens some more.
I decided it was going to be worth the effort and discomfort after reading this article over on RunSickBoyRun.com: Hypertonic Saline Solution (7%). Come on back after reading about the empirical evidence that it works and check out my personal experiences in the last few weeks.
It’s worth it, and I can back it up with personal experience now. Sure, it still irritates the heck out of me, but so does the inCourage vest. What’s one more thing? I had a tendancy to cough the entire time I was nebulizing (thankfully with a 7-minute eFlow treatment using PARI Hyper-Sal™ available from my neb supplier), at least until this morning. Today, I only coughed once during my treatment, was able to breathe in more solution, and was irritated for less time after I was done. Progress is being made!
I have a roller-coaster relationship with sputum. After IVs, I can’t hock up a loogie to save my life. I managed a little piece smaller than most raisins at clinic on Friday and told them they’d have to grow it out for two weeks to get anything from it. It’s another story as I progress downhill towards needing IVs, when every little cough brings up some gunk and a huge spaz brings up a lot. My periods of massive health and needing IVs are as different as night and day.
This is where the 7% saline comes in: I am able to bring up junk when I’m not massively overrun with an infection. While I’m doing my treatment and for the next 10-15 minutes, I can clear out anywhere from one to 5 loogies. I figured out this morning that adds up over time, assuming my AZLI, Colistine are keeping any growth in check, and creating new volume for me.
What are you willing to do to create genuine new lung volume? Me, I’m willing to suck down salty air for 7 minutes twice a day.