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Suffer shortness of breath. Taking medication for blood pressure, cholesterol and arthritis pain. Due to alcohol or smoking?

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Internal Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 1980
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Question pertaining to 76 year old man with shortness of breath when sitting or laying down. No pain. Feels fine when he stands up. Has been happening occasionally for a few days, but has become persistent for the past 3 hours. Otherwise active and healthy. Does not drink alcohol or smoke. Takes meds for high blood pressure, cholesterol, arthritis pain.
Posted Wed, 30 Oct 2013 in Lung and Chest disorders
Answered by Dr. Rakesh Karanwal 35 minutes later
Brief Answer:
cardiac evaluation is required

Detailed Answer:

Good Day to you.

I am Dr.(Col) R Karanwal, M.D. (Internal Medicine) and will assist you in addressing to your query.

I can fully appreciate the pain and agony that you are passing through.

From the details provided- in the background of long-standing hypertension plus high cholesterol levels- it is almost certain that :-

* You are suffering from a failing heart (specifically the pump- the left side of the heart), which is no longer capable of handling increased burden.

* There is also a strong possibility of co-existing heart disease (narrowing of blood vessels which supply blood to the heart muscle), which- along with persistently increased burden over the heart- has precipitated heart failure.

* YOU SHOULD TAKE YOUR PRESENT CONDITION AS AN EMERGENCY and IMMEDIATELY consult a CARDIOLOGIST/ your treating doctor, who- in turn- will refer you to a cardiologist for urgent evaluation of heart status and start immediate treatment.

* The less-likelier possibility is that of recurrent episodes of small blood clots dislodging from distal blood vessels (veins) and clogging the blood vessels of the lungs. However, the symptoms do not favor this condition.

Hope I have addressed your query to your satisfaction. If you have any further questions, I will be more than happy to help you.

However, if you do not have any further clarifications, you can close the discussion and rate the answer.

Wish you a speedy recovery and good health.

Fond regards and best wishes,

Dr. (Col) R Karanwal
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