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Causes for shortness of breath - Online Doctor Chats

Date : 21-Feb-2012
User rating for this question
Very Good Posted in: Lung and Chest disorders
Answered by

General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2008
Answered : 3388 Questions
User :   I've had bouts of shortness of breath in the past, but never anything severe. Lately though (within the past week) I've experience extreme shortness of breath when talking for long stretches of time, lying down in bed, and sometimes even sitting. Taking deep breaths doesn't relieve it, and just ends up giving me pain in my chest when I do so. At times, I feel as if no oxygen is getting down my throat. What could this be?
Doctor :   May I know your age please : User :   I'm 18 years of age.
Doctor :   Ok.
User :   I don' know if this information is relevant, but I also have migraines and take Fioricet as needed.
Doctor :   Do you have a family history of Asthma or respiratory diseases ?
User :   My fathers side did I believe. I was artificially inseminated, but I believe the records stated that my paternal grandfather had lung cancer
User :   And someone on my fathers side, whether it be him or his parents had asthma
Doctor :   Ok.
Doctor :   Ok.
Doctor :   Did you ever have previously any such bouts ?
User :   I have in the past but not as severe. They'd be very brief and were far and few between
Doctor :   oK.
Doctor :   Is this time of the year very cold around ?
User :   yes. I live in Chicago.
Doctor :   Thats in windy city, have you been recently exposed to any cold climate or ay recent flu or cough ?
User :   no. no flu or cough this season at all
User :   and the temperatures have actually been very mild compared to most years. i've lived here my entire life.
Doctor :   Ok.
Doctor :   Do you feel any crepitions or wheeze while you breathe apart from the other symptoms you mentioned ?
User :   no
Doctor :   May I know if you have any Cardiovascular problem previously ?
Doctor :   Or were you anaemic previously ?
Doctor :   How are your haemoglobin levels now ?
User :   never had any cardio issues. my mother suspected anemia when i was younger because i am so pale compared to my family and my hands and feet are very cold most of the time.
Doctor :   Ok.
User :   but the doctor affirmed i was not when i was younger. i dont know about my hemoglobin levels. i havent gotten them checked recently
Doctor :   Ok.
Doctor :   I would give you a differential diagnosis of the possible problem you might be having and we need to investigate upon and run through some tests do actually help you beter : Doctor :   1.Blood and blood vessel problems such as anemia or pulmonary embolus
Doctor :   2.Obesity
Doctor :   3.Panic attacks and anxiety
Doctor :   4.Allergies
Doctor :   5.Serious blood infections such as septicemia, salt imbalances, severe dehydration and diabetes
Doctor :   6.Problems with lungs such as pneumonia, bronchiolitis, obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, pulmonary hypertension, epiglottitis, croup, or chocking in the airways and wheezing
7.Major heart problems such as heart attack or angina, heart failure, arrhythmias, congenital heart disease, and any heart ailment especially if the heart is unable to pump enough blood to enable supply oxygen to the various parts of the body including brain
Doctor :   I would suggest the following steps to help you though there are a huge no. of reasons.
Doctor :   1.A simple CBC BLOOD
Doctor :   2.ESR
Doctor :   3.HAEMOGLOBIN
Doctor :   4.CHEST X-RAY
Doctor :   5.EKG
Doctor :   Thank you for consulting me, Take care, bye for now.
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