Get your Health question answered in 3 easy steps
A Doctor will be with you shortly
Ask a Doctor Now
166 Doctors are Online

Short of breath and palpitations after a hot bath. Why?

User rating for this question
Very Good
Answered by

Neurologist, Surgical
Practicing since : 1997
Answered : 65 Questions
After I take a hot bath, I get short of breath and a racing pounding pulse
Posted Fri, 13 Apr 2012 in Hypertension and Heart Disease
Answered by Dr. Shivakumar S. Kupanur 3 hours later

Thanks for posting your query.

Hot bath causes cutaneous vasodilation that means increase in diameter of veins of skin. This further leads to decrease in blood pressure. This mechanism involves the complicated system of sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system of body.

This vasodilatation causes pooling of blood to the skin and legs if you are standing. These reduces the blood supply to the brain and the other vital organs like lungs and heart causing shortness of breath.

The palpitations could be caused by a decrease in blood pressure. Decrease in blood pressure makes the heart to work harder and faster to pump the blood to provide sufficient oxygen to the body. This leads to pounding pulse.

This is a physiological mechanism, so do not worry. But, if you are having severe symptoms associated with this, like dizziness, chest pain, lightheadedness, extreme shortness of breath, etc, it is better to get evaluated by physician at the earliest.

Some measures which might help you.
1. Do not use very hot water for bath.
2. Avoid sudden change of posture from sitting to standing.

I hope, this answers your query. Please accept my answer in case you have no follow up queries.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Share on Google+
Question is related to
Medical Topics

The user accepted the expert's answer

Ask a Cardiologist

© Ebix, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
All the information, content and live chat provided on the site is intended to be for informational purposes only, and not a substitute for professional or medical advice. You should always speak with your doctor before you follow anything that you read on this website. Any health question asked on this site will be visible to the people who browse this site. Hence, the user assumes the responsibility not to divulge any personally identifiable information in the question. Use of this site is subject to our Terms & Conditions
Already Rated.
Your rating:

Ask a Doctor