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Feeling tightness in throat and breathing difficulty after a work out. How to overcome this?

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Emergency Medicine Specialist
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I am currently going to a persona; trainer and when I am doing the more aerobic work my throat tightens under me voice box and it feels like I cant take a full breath. I have never had this before
Posted Thu, 21 Feb 2013 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Sheeba Stephen 3 hours later
Hello and welcome to Healthcare Magic. Thanks for your query.

From the description of your symptoms, I would consider the following possibilities:

- Dehydration and dryness of the throat after a work-out can be a likely cause

- Salt (sodium or potassium) level abnormalities can also result in muscle spasms and such symptoms. It is possible that the aerobic work-outs could be resulting in sweating and salt loss.

- Another possibility to be considered is an atypical panic attack. Sometimes, physical exertion and breathlessness can trigger an anxiety / panic attack.

- Sometimes, an anginal pain (due to a cardiac cause) can present with such symptoms and difficulty in breathing, after exertion. Though anginal pain is typically over the chest, in some cases, pain or tightness may be experienced above the chest.

You can try to reduce the intensity of your aerobic exercises (try to start mild and step it up gradually). You can also ensure that you drink plenty of water prior to your work-out. You can also try taking an Oral Rehydration Solution before your work-out to replenish any salt loss during the exercises. Taking potassium-rich foods like banana and tender coconut may also help.

In case, the problem is still persistent despite these simple measures, then you will have to have a medical evaluation including an ECG and a Stress test.

Wish you all the best.

Dr. Sheeba Stephen
Emergency Medicine Specialist
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