Get your health question answered instantly from our pool of 18000+ doctors from over 80 specialties
121 Doctors Online

By proceeding, I accept the Terms and Conditions

Dr. Andrew Rynne
MD
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

HCM Blog Instant Access to Doctors
HCM BlogQuestions Answered
HCM Blog Satisfaction

What causes anxiety and difficulties in breathing?

Answered by
Dr.
Dr. Priyanka Aggarwal

ENT Specialist

Practicing since :2008

Answered : 1392 Questions

default
Posted on Thu, 22 Jun 2017 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Question: I developed breathing difficulties approx 2 years ago, which have worsened gradually.. I am coansistently told by the doctor that I am hyper ventilating due to anxiety …. wish it were so simple.
I originally felt something wasn’t moving properly when I breathed in and out, ordered chest xray which came back clear. No wheezing or any symptom like that, just that i couldn’t breathe deeply any more. Problems have persisted, getting worse with worsening pantness, shortness of breath at all times and worsening feeling of suffocation especially when lying down. I’m breathing about 40 breaths every 30 secs now, constantly like this and am exhausted with it and scared at the increasing shallowness and choking feeling. Very bad feeling of choking all the time and gurgling noises in throat now, very shallow breaths n and out. Can still swallow but feels very odd and uncomfortable. Have also had a diaphragm test this was also clear. Have now such a shallow breath in and out and permanent choking feeling, wretching sometimes which is so difficult even as so little air. I! Now having to sit with my mouth open to breathe but if I open it wide start choking. My voice has changed too over past few months and struggling to talk without choking. Please don't say anxiety as doc has said this, have tried relaxation, meficatipn, everythíngg and still worsened. Can barely breathe in or out now and very frightened, as not been taken seriously at all. The doc says if I go to urgent care they will read chest xrays are clear and say I'm anxious. He seems unable to understand I'm anxious as this has worsened so much since the onset. I feel like something is semi paralysed in my throat is this possible? I feel it need urgent treatment and don't know how to proceed. I am 44 eight stone 6 points , one metre 68 and not taking any medication. Also to addmy symptoms started after four months of bed rest following following a leg accident. I have always felt that because I was immobile such a long time this weakened my muscles but my doc dismisses this. I can barely touch my throat now and feel I'm choking when I eat, when I breathe, the doctor says I'm focussing on it all the time but tandthe choking feeling is so frightening anduncomfortable becuasethe lack of breath I caninhale or exhale is so frightening, along with choking feeling. I feel I should have been referred andinveztigatedl long before this was allowed to happen. Please can you advise as to whether some kind of throat paralysis is possible and what can be doneif anything as I am going to book a private ent appointment for tomorrow as I'm fearingimay choke soon. This is not normal shortness of breath but some constriction which has worsened considerably over time. Please can you help in any way to advise me what canbe done if this is some kind of throat paralysis? I wouldnbe panicking so much if it weren't so serious and difficult to breathe. Thank you

I have managed to get an appointment private ent tonight. Do you think it possible to email me within the next ten minutes before I set off? Thanks I know this a lot to ask.

Hi will set off in half an hour don't know if anything is possible for a reply before then am hoping to have more information before I go thanks.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Priyanka Aggarwal 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
Dysphagia with dyspnoea

Detailed Answer:
Hi
Welcome to Healthcare Magic and thanks for putting up the query.

I understand you don't want to hear anxiety again; but from what you describe it seems to be anxiety disorder. However as you stress that your complaints have been increasing over the time, my advice is you should get a barium swallow study and an endoscopic examination of the throat done by an ENT SPECIALIST. You can also consider a pulmonary function test done to rule out any lungs problem.

Since you are scheduled for an ENT visit, please update me after your visit with an ENT SPECIALIST opinion. You can also discuss about the tests I mentioned above.

Take care
Thanks and regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Prasad
doctor
default
Follow up: Dr. Priyanka Aggarwal 20 hours later
There was no evidence of vocal fold paralysis. Ages ago I asked for a diaphragm test as I felt my diaphragm wasn't moving properly when breathing, and they did an ultrasound on diaphragm and said there was movement. However the respiratory nurse had said that they should have done sniff test which measures movement before and after inspiration, two different readings to compare. They just held the ultrasound over my diaphragm and didn't do any before or after measurements.. Can you tell me if ultrasound alone without sniff test would detect all types of possible paralysis if there was an issue. As this has been happening a long time and I originally had said I felt the muscles weren't working properly.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Priyanka Aggarwal 3 hours later
Brief Answer:
Dysphagia with dyspnoea

Detailed Answer:
Hi
Thanks for the information.
Ultrasound examination of diaphragmatic movements can definitely assess any paralysis if there is any.
I would say diaphragm paralysis being a cause of dyspnoea is always accompanied with many other neurological deficits. From your history my advise is you should get a pulmonary function test done and an endoscopic examination done by an ENT SPECIALIST. This will help to diagnose in a better way.
Any further questions are always welcome.
Take care
Thanks and regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Prasad
doctor
default
Follow up: Dr. Priyanka Aggarwal 57 minutes later
Hi can i ask you what other neurological deficits woyld be present please
doctor
Answered by Dr. Priyanka Aggarwal 12 hours later
Brief Answer:
Dysphagia with dyspnoea

Detailed Answer:
Hi
There are many diseases which can be accompanied with diaphragm paralysis like metastatic lung cancer,blunt cervical trauma, surgical trauma (mainly thoracic), herpes zoster, cervical spondylosis, and supraclavicular brachial plexus block,motor neuron disease, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and postpolio syndrome.
Other causes include thoracic trauma, cardiac surgery, multiple sclerosis, myopathies, muscular dystrophy (acid maltase deficiency), Guillain-Barré syndrome, and Parsonage-Turner syndrome (neuropathy of brachial plexus).
Any history relevant to these will always be present.
I again advise you to go for pulmonary function test.
Any further questions are always welcome.
Thanks and regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Kampana
doctor
premium_optimized

The User accepted the expert's answer

Share on
Question is related to
Diseases and Conditions ,   ,   ,   ,  

Recent questions on  Diaphragm paralysis

doctor1 MD

husband's phrenic nerve damaged during bypass surgery . affected diaphram. had plication surgery. breathing is getting worse. can anything be done...

doctor1 MD

Hi Doctor, My mother has diaphragm spasms from the age of 15 years which became severe eventually. Now, she is 52 years old. She is indefinitely...

doctor1 MD

I was diagoned with paralized diaphragm last week. I have three exercises to do now for breathing and strengthening the diaphragm and lungs. Are...

doctor1 MD

hi i m 65 male just made my blood test and i have high level in sgot /ast 39.33 and sgpt/ alt 113.88 and gamma gt is 88.77 i have a stomach tumor...

doctor1 MD

My 31yr old nephew under went spinal nect surgery after an accident. After 11 days, the surgeon is very please with his movement in all limbs &...