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Is severe breathlessness on exertion due to Diphenhydramine tablet?

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Practicing since : 2001
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Have habit of an afternoon doze and/or dozing off at the tv at night. Have taken approx 100mg Diphenhyydramine at night to help sleep - for maybe 5/7 for 5 months. It's been hugely helpful. No side effects-or so I thought. After 37 years of long hours of sedentary work and smoking of course I'm not fit. But I stopped work and smoking 6/12. Began exercising more, eating well. 2 weeks ago increasingly severe breathlessness on exertion. I'm seeing doctors. thankyou gc
Posted Wed, 2 May 2012 in Medicines and Side Effects
Answered by Dr. Rakhi Tayal 26 minutes later

Thanks for the query.

Breathless on exertion in the absence of any cardiac disorder is suggestive of a lung problem. The diseases which need to be ruled out are bronchiolitis, COPD, pneumonia, pulmonary embolism or pulmonary hypertension.

Prolonged history of smoking predisposes you to all these problems. "This breathlessness is not likely to be associated with consumption of diphenhydramine".

You may need to get chest X-ray, MRI chest, ECG and other investigations including bronchoscopy to rule out these disorders.

I would advise you to XXXXXXX your physician for proper diagnosis and further management.

I hope my answer and recommendations are adequate and helpful. Waiting for your further follow up queries if any.


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