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Difficulty in breathing during winter. Taking propranolol for anxiety. Cure?

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Practicing since : 2004
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we are into our winter I find that even a small amount of exertion and i am having trouble breathing.
I am 50 yrs old and take propananol for anxiety.
It takes about 30 minutes to recover when i come inside.
Posted Wed, 18 Apr 2012 in Anxiety and Stress
Answered by Dr. Ashish Mittal 1 hour later
Thanks for your query.

I appreciate your efforts for medical consultation in so much distress.

Important aspects of your query are:
•     50 year old male
•     Known case of anxiety disorder
•     Complaints of: exertional dyspnoea
•     Currently on nabumetone, cyclobenzaprine andpropranolol

I would like to consider multiple possibilities in following hierarchy:
•     Dyspnoea because of propranolol
•     Cardiac illness: need examination and investigation like ecg and 2 D Echo
•     Exacerbation of anxiety may associated with dyspnoea

Common symptoms of anxiety: anxiety, nervousness, restlessness, mild irritability, excessive worry regarding own wellbeing, tremor, muscle spasm, heaviness in body, easy fatigability, palpitation, sleep difficulty and dry mouth. In your case muscle pain because of anxiety which indicate poor control on anxiety symptoms.

Propranolol used for performance and social anxiety. It is not frequently used for long term management of anxiety. It also can give rise to asthma like symptoms in some people.

Currently most commonly two types of medicine used for management of anxiety. For immediate relief of anxiety benzodiazepines group of medicines are used and for long term relief most commonly SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors are used. SSRI takes around 3-4 weeks to show its effect and cognitive behaviour therapy also takes weeks to show its effect.

I hope this information has been both informative and helpful for you. In case of any doubt, I will be available for follow ups.

Wish you good health.
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