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Shortness of breath. Chest x-ray, blood test, breathing tests for lungs came normal. Chronic smoker. Advise

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Internal Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 1986
Answered : 2094 Questions
Hi Dr
I have shortness of breath - which improves overnight and gets progressively worste during the day. I have seen my doctor and had breathing tests to check the lungs, blood test and chest xrays however all results come back normal. I have been smoking for 15 years at about a pack a day.

Posted Sat, 4 May 2013 in Lung and Chest disorders
Answered by Dr. Akhilesh Dubey 2 hours later
Thanks for your query.
Your shortness of breath should be most likely due to chronic smoking.
According to your reports, if investigations are normal this is good.
I would suggest you should quit smoking, as it will reduce other health risks also.
Please upload your reports so that I can review them. You have a feature to upload the reports by yourself on the right side of this query page. You may want to utilize it.
I would like to know if there is any cough with expectoration, your shortness of breath is same or worsening over the period.
Please let me know are you overweight.
Other possibility is anxiety related shortness of breath, if every other thing is fine.
In the meantime, just take up deep breathing exercise and try to quit smoking.
Please respond to my queries raised so that I can clarify better.
Dr. A. Dubey. M.D.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Shortness of breath. Chest x-ray, blood test, breathing tests for lungs came normal. Chronic smoker. Advise 40 hours later
Hi Dr Dubey
There is no cough or expectoration.
I would say that over the last month the shortness of breath varies, but on the whole i it has got worse. I am slightly overweight (H: 180cm W: 90kg).

I feel like there is a build up of phlegm. In the morning i tend to breathe better but as soon as i get up i can feel the phlegm moving down my throat to my chest and it starts building up - and within an hour of getting up i start suffering from the shortness of breathe and difficultly in taking a deep breathe. I have been using Bisolvon Chesty - which breaks down mucus and helps clear the chest but this is not working.

I do not have copies of the reports, however my doctor has advised that all tests were normal. She has also indicated anxiety but i don't believe that to be the case.

Answered by Dr. Akhilesh Dubey 3 hours later
Thanks for your input.
I have gone through your details, and following are my comments:

1) First thing you should quit smoking completely which will help you and also reduce other risks.
2) Your sputum and chest congestion is most likely due to chronic smoking causing inflammation in lungs. That is why mucolytic like bromhexine helps to break mucus.
3) Your little over weight as according to your height weight should be approximately 80 kg or less.
4) Once you stop smoking taking care of diet and exercise regularly with deep breathing exercises.
5) You can also take up yoga and meditation, which can help you.
6)Mucolytic and bronchodilator by inhalation, which can be prescribed by your Physician.

Hope this is useful for you and if you have any further query please ask me, I will be happy to help.

Dr. A. Dubey M.D.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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