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Respiratory medicine

Rapid assessment and treatment of respiratory problems

When concerning symptoms like breathlessness or persistent coughing appear, you’ll understandably want a rapid diagnosis and effective treatment from experienced consultants. That’s exactly what you’ll find at BMI Mount Alvernia, with private appointments available at your convenience to start you on your path towards recovery.

Respiratory medicine primarily focuses on concerns of the respiratory tract, consisting of:

  • Lungs
  • Trachea (windpipe)
  • Bronchial tree (which let the air in and out of your lungs) 

Common symptoms and conditions seen by our consultants include:

  • Coughing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Wheezing
  • Chest pain
  • Coughing up blood or sputum (mucus and saliva) 

These symptoms can indicate a number of conditions, requiring expert assessment. That’s why patients travel from the surrounding areas of Surrey and Kent to see our respiratory specialists.

Our consultants at BMI Mount Alvernia regularly diagnose and treat conditions such as:

  • Chest infections
  • Covid
  • Suspected cancer
  • Pulmonary Fibrosis
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  • Asthma
  • Tuberculosis
  • Sarcoidosis
  • Occupational lung diseases

If you are concerned about any of your symptoms, or you are having a flare-up of an existing condition that requires new management, why not come and see one of our respiratory specialists? Private appointments at BMI Mount Alvernia ensure you’ll benefit from rapid diagnosis and treatment without delays, with a personalised service from experts in the field. 

Once you’ve received a diagnosis, a management plan will be drawn up to help you deal with your symptoms, typically in the form of medication and tablets, which are available for collection at our on-site pharmacy.

A wide range of non-invasive treatments are available, such as medicines like antibiotics, steroid sprays, immune modulators, and inhalers. Your individual treatment plan is tailored towards bringing you optimal results, and if you have a chronic (long-term) condition, your consultant can review your treatments at regular intervals to ensure you receive the most appropriate treatment and the best possible care.

BMI Mount Alvernia offers advanced management plans for asthma sufferers, including home oxygen kits as well as portable oxygen devices, depending on your needs.

If other measures have been unsuccessful in managing conditions like COPD, a lung volume reduction procedure can be performed, although this is usually for severe cases only. This involves removing the damaged or diseased part of the lungs, allowing the remaining tissue to expand further as you breathe. Procedures like this are rarely required, but our surgeons have the necessary expertise in the field to ensure your safety during this complex surgery.

Long term symptoms of Covid are known to last for weeks or even months after the infection has passed, with research still being carried out on the long-term effects of this debilitating virus. As such, we are increasingly seeing referrals for those suffering with Long Covid, with treatments available to help manage your symptoms, alongside physiotherapy options for rehabilitation.

Thanks to the expertise of our consultants, you’ll get the latest and best evidence-based treatments for all of your respiratory concerns. Whether you’ve been referred to us by your GP or you are self-referring in the first instance, we look forward to welcoming you to BMI Mount Alvernia for an initial assessment and consultation. 

Your first visit to us at Mount Alvernia will begin with your consultant taking a detailed medical history, allowing them to understand the challenges you’ve been facing. They may ask you questions such as:

  • What symptoms have you been experiencing?
  • How long have you had these symptoms?
  • Have you had similar issues in the past?
  • Have you previously received any treatment? How effective was it?
  • Are you currently taking any medication?

Consultations typically last between 30-45 minutes, giving you the opportunity to have your concerns addressed without the usual time constraints. Following your medical history, your consultant may perform a physical examination, listening to your chest with a stethoscope and assessing the symptoms you’ve mentioned.

Spirometry (also known as a ‘blowing test’) will normally be performed as part of your initial assessment, as it helps your consultant assess how well your lungs work and is useful in diagnosing (or ruling out) asthma and COPD. A FeNO (Fractional Exhaled Nitric Oxide) test may also be used, which assesses the health of your airways and highlights any inflammation present.

If you’ve had a recent x-ray, your consultant will likely want to review this, or they may send you for an x-ray in our Imaging department to get up-to-date results. 

A CT scan of your chest may follow, along with a chest X-ray, and your consultant may refer you to other colleagues in Cardiology to investigate potential heart-related issues. Blood tests may be useful on occasion, and can be easily arranged in one of our clinical examination rooms. 

We also have a Lung Function lab for more detailed tests, should they be required, located off-site but arranged through your consultant. This ensures accuracy of your diagnosis, even for more complex conditions.

Advanced investigations for suspected cancer can also be undertaken at Mount Alvernia, with rapid access to the necessary diagnostics, along with a multi-disciplinary team to handle all aspects of your treatment with a holistic approach.

Once all investigations have been completed, your consultant will meet with you again to discuss further steps and present you with your treatment options. This may include prescriptions for medication (which can be picked up at our on-site pharmacy), a management plan for chronic conditions, or referral to Oncology specialists for any potential cancer concerns. 

By choosing to have your treatment at Mount Alvernia, you’ll be able to take advantage of all these great benefits:

Assessments ASAP – If your quality of life has been affected by your symptoms, you’ll want to be seen by a consultant without any delay. By seeing patients rapidly, as well as offering a quick turnaround with MRI results, our consultants can get you started on the right course of treatment for your respiratory issues as soon as possible.

Patient satisfaction – 98% of patients in 2020 said they would happily recommend the Mount Alvernia Hospital to friends and family in an independent report, and we’re confident that you’ll agree. 98% also said that the quality of care here at Mount Alvernia Hospital was either ‘very good’ or ‘excellent’. We aim to make your stay with us as comfortable as possible, and these results highlight our continued efforts to ensure this is achieved.

State-of-the-art facilities – With recent investments in equipment, BMI Mount Alvernia offers exemplary diagnostics for all your needs, with new PET scanners in our Imaging department, as well as a dedicated cancer unit for rapid referrals.

Personalised care – We believe in a bespoke approach to treatment, tailoring each experience to our patients’ need, based on an accurate diagnosis.

A multidisciplinary approach – Our teams at Mount Alvernia work in tandem with each other to provide you with the best possible care from start to finish. Your Respiratory Medicine consultant will work closely with colleagues in physiotherapy and radiography, alongside anaesthetists and nurses, to ensure you have support from appropriate medical professionals every step of the way during your treatment.

Convenient appointments – With private appointments available at dedicated clinics five days a week, you are sure to find an appointment slot that suits your needs and availability.

If you have been experiencing breathing difficulties, why not book a private consultation today? Our consultants can organise the necessary diagnostic tests to investigate your symptoms, and outline all treatment options for you promptly, arranging any further scans or surgery if required.

For effective relief and personalised care for all your respiratory concerns, please contact Mount Alvernia to book an appointment now. 

 

Specialists offering Respiratory medicine

Dr Jonathan Dakin

Consultant Respiratory Physician

MD, FRCP, BSc Hons

BMI Mount Alvernia Hospital

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