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Got shortness of breath and sternum pain during pregnancy. Medical test normal. What is wrong?

May 2013
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Answered by
Practicing since : 2006
Answered : 4909 Questions
Hi There,
My sister in law gave birth on Monday. She is the picturte of health - not overweight - and no illnesses. She is on no medication either. She had a perfect pregnancy and gave birth to a healthy boy 7.6pounds.
All is ok - except she has continued to suffer from shortness of breath - which started in her 3rd trimester.
She has occasional shooting pains too. The area of pain is her sternum.
She has had her blood pressure & pulse checked - even went on a heart monitor - all was fine - doctor said she is perfectly well. But I am concerned for her - as the pain is still there every now & then and she feels short of breath.
I though possible bruising? Or perhaps some anxiety? Is it possible she fractured her sternum whilst giving birth?
Posted Sun, 14 Apr 2013 in Women's Health
Answered by Dr. Sree Gouri SR 42 minutes later
Thanks for the query.
According to your description the possibilities are:
-In pregnancy some amount of regurgitation of the food will present, that can lead to reflux esophagitis. Which can present with pain at the sternum area.
-Anemia: If she was mildly anemic previously, that can aggravate after delivery and can present with breathlessness etc.
-Psychological stress, anxiety after delivery can lead to breathlessness sometimes.
-Rarely pulmonary embolism can occur.
So if she continuously presents with same symptoms, better to go for ECG, ECHO etc.

Hope I have answered your query. I will be available to answer your follow up queries. If you are satisfied with all my answer, please rate the answer after closing the discussion.
Take care.
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