Mike Irwin - Bronchiectasis

Nobody, honestly, nobody lives life to the fullest quite like me. I’m a 54-year-old resident of Fort Nelson BC and I jump, run, skate and dive through it. I decided to continue this adventurous living even after I was diagnosed with bronchiectasis in 2010.

 

What it Bronchiectasis (bronky-ECK-tuh-sis)?

It is an abnormal widening of the bronchi, the tubes that bring air in and out of the lungs. People who have this condition cannot clear phlegm from their lungs, which creates chronic coughing and respiratory infections. Bronchiectasis can also lead to other complications. In my case, this was the partial collapse of my right lung.

 

What was most important in your fight against this disease?

As this disease progressed, lung surgery became inevitable. But instead of getting down, I got motivated. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have private moments where I get pretty concerned. But I looked at this as my opportunity – my Stanley Cup Final – and I’m going to come out a winner. If I start feeling sorry for myself, it’ll just bring me down and make me sicker. I have a lot of living left to do.

What has life been life post-surgery?

Since coming out of surgery, I have completed three half-marathons, participated in our annual BC Lung Stairclimb fundraiser (only a month after surgery) and initiated a personal campaign to spread awareness about the importance of exercise in my Fort Nelson community. If the past is any indication of my ability to seek adventure in life, I suspect further adventures await!

Page Last Updated: 26/05/2020