Back in 1985, things were going well for Jim Quinlan and his wife. They had just bought a house and had a second baby. Jim had a new job, too. Life was looking good, until the end of the year when Jim came down with a terrible cold that just wouldn’t go away. The coughing dragged on for months, until Jim finally saw his doctor. To his shock, he was diagnosed with asthma.
Scary Asthma Attacks
The problem was not just the indignity of being diagnosed with sudden-onset asthma. The real rub was that even when Jim used his inhalers as prescribed, he just couldn’t get his breathing under control. He had numerous trips to the emergency room, including one in the back of an ambulance after he nearly died of an asthma attack on his front porch. (You can read about this at Jim’s website, asthmastory.com)
Thinking that the cold damp Michigan weather might be partly to blame for two nearly fatal asthma attacks in a matter of months, Jim and his wife moved the family to Florida. But the asthma went along for the ride. It was still terribly difficult to control.
Asthma and Infection
A family friend who was a pharmacist read about research linking hard-to-treat asthma to a respiratory infection with Chlamydia pneumoniae. Although it was a challenge to find a doctor to test for and treat the infection, Jim’s friend got in touch with the researcher, Dr. David Hahn. Eventually, it took 14 weeks of antibiotic treatment to overcome the asthma.
Jim’s response wasn’t immediate. But within a year, he realized that he was completely free of inhalers after having been told-several times-that he would have asthma for the rest of his life. Six years later, he prepared for a long walk, fulfilling a dream he had thought was unattainable.
Hiking the Appalachian Trail
Jim hiked on the Appalachian Trail, and he did not take inhalers with him. What a turn-around, from a life in which asthma limited his activity even playing with his sons, to a life in which he could accomplish a challenging hike of hundreds of miles! The photo of Jim was taken on the Trail.
To learn more about Jim’s story, check out his website, or read Dr. David Hahn’s book, A Cure for Asthma? What Your Doctor Isn’t Telling You–and Why. A Cure for Asthma? is published by People’s Pharmacy Press.