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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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What causes frequent episodes of breathing difficulty, lightheadedness and dizziness after flight journey?

Answered by
Dr.
Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar

Pulmonologist

Practicing since :2008

Answered : 14616 Questions

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Posted on Tue, 23 Aug 2016 in Hypertension and Heart Disease
Question: After returning from a short trip (48 hr.) to XXXXXXX 2 hr. Flight to and from, i have recently started having episodes of having a difficult breathing , feeling faint, cramping in the back of my knees and my hands, body weakness, and dizziness. I am a 37 year old male, in good health with occasional constipation as my issue.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 3 hours later
Brief Answer:
Immediately consult doctor and get done CT pulmonary angiography.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your question on Healthcare Magic.
I can understand your concern.
Well chances of pulmonary embolism are less because of shorter flight times, but your symptoms are characteristic of deep venous thrombosis (DVT) and subsequent pulmonary embolism.
So immediately consult doctor and get done
1. Blood pressure monitoring
2. Bilateral lower limb venous doppler
3. D dimer
4. CT pulmonary angiography.
Hope I have solved your query. I will be happy to help you further. Wish you good health. Thanks.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 17 hours later
My BP has ranged from 126/95 (arrival in ER) 122/87, 117/82 -- when I got home that eve I had a slight breathing issue and my BP was 130/79 to 133/87--after an hour it was 110/69---my pulse has been in the 70-80 range with the exception of one reading at home on a finger pulse/oxygen of 47.
I had a D dimer in the ER -- <.19L
My CTA Chest results-- no pulmonary embolism, unremarkable aorta, lungs are clear.
I assume because of my D dimer results, no bilateral lower limb venous doppler was done.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 5 hours later
Brief Answer:
Do you smoke?

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your follow up question on Healthcare Magic.
I can understand your concern.
I have gone through the reports you have mentioned.
No need to worry for pulmonary embolism and deep venous thrombosis (DVT) as your reports are normal.
We need to think some other causes for your symptoms.
So please let me know
1. Do you smoke?
2. Do you have wheezing?
Please reply me answers of above asked questions, so that I can guide you better. I will be happy to help you further. Wish you good health. Thanks.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 10 hours later
I smoked briefly several years ago. I do not have wheezing but do have a congested nose which i was told (ER dr.) to take ZYRTEC. i have been dehydrated in the past so i have upped my water intake.
****ADDITIONAL info, during one of these "breathing" episodes i noticed my toes turned blue.
Here is the complete chronological breakdown of my issues up to the ER Visit.--MAIN ISSUES
***breathing issues-- shortness of breath episodes, seems as though I have to concentrate on breathing instead of it happening naturally
*** cramping in hands (goes into claw--right hand)
*** continuous cramp in back of knees
*** botttom lip issues
*** lower body seems heavy and weak
*** equilibrium is messed up
*** light headed /dizzy
*** feel faint and weak

CHRONOLOGICAL order of SYMPTOMS

7/18--Took FLIGHT to XXXXXXX
7/19-- had a shortness of breath episode at elevation of 6,444 feet about sea level---I LIVE AT SEA LEVEL
7/20-- flew home from XXXXXXX
7/21 --- went to work , got too hot / dehydrated-
NEW SYMPTOM--- hand cramping
7/22 -- worked 12 hour shift, mowed yard, worked out at gym and felt fine
7/23 -- light headed and wozzie-- drank lots of water
NEW SYMPTOM--** BOTTOM LIP starts to act weird thru out the rest of week
7/24 -- felt ok
7/25--- -thirsty, light headed, dizzy, Shortness of Breath
NEW SYMPTOM-- CONTINUOS CRAMP in BACK OF KNEE/ XXXXXXX horse feeling on back of right leg, sometimes left leg too
7/26-- felt ill
7/27--- felt ill , weak, episode shortness of breath --happened at work (nights) -- legs felt heavy
7/28. -- felt ill
7/29 -- felt ill
7/30 -- 8:00 pm, light headed, dizzy, shortness of breath
7/ 31 --- ER visit-- gave IV, WENT HOME AND RESTED---
BP 126/95, 122/87, 117/82
Slight breathing issue that night
8/1---felt lethargic, stayed home from work--
8:00 pm-- BP 130/79-- shortness of breath
8/2--- went to work (inside) -- felt queasy, stuffy nose, used nose spray
**8/2 light headed, shortness of breath -- ill feeling
BP 130/79, after 1 hour BP113/79
BP 117/82
8/3 -- 12:00 pm shortness of breath / light headedness
nasal stuffiness (no drainage)
Slight sinus pressure
Took some OTC nasal decongestant -- cleared nose but still had shortness of breath
4:00 pm--- outside going up stairs got winded-- nose ​stopped up --
5:00 shortness of breath AGAIN BP 133/87 at 6:15
7:25--- 110/ 69
8/5---Visited DR/ER and had the,tests, d dimer, cta chest, bloodwork (all normal)
doctor
Answered by Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 17 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Have you ever checked for vitamin B12 level?

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your follow up question on Healthcare Magic.
I can understand your concern.
With all the normal reports, possibility of stress and anxiety is high for all your symptoms.
Another possibility is vitamin B12 deficiency and viral infection.
So please let me know
1. Do you have stressful life?
2. Have you ever undergone vitamin B12 level?
3. How was the weather in Colorado? Was it too humid? Was it too cold?
Please reply me answers of above asked questions, so that I can guide you better. I will be happy to help you further. Wish you good health. Thanks.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 26 minutes later
I have not been tested for b12--- i would not consider my life stressful but i do work alot of overtime -- shift work. My fiance suffered a pnuemothorax this year culminating in ma VAT procedure. I am planning on getting married next year. I have been told i am a bit of an introvert so i dont talk alot.
The weather in XXXXXXX was great, barely any humidity, temps 65 (PM) and 94 (AM)-- we drove around alot, seeing many things during the short time we were there.
-- re viral infection--- i have had continuous nasal congestion relieved only with nasal spray, the zyrtec does not seem to do anything but make me drowsy
doctor
Answered by Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 10 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Well then possibility of viral infection is more.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your follow up question on Healthcare Magic.
I can understand your concern.
Well then possibility of viral infection is more.
No need to worry for pulmonary embolism or stress related diseases.
Possibility of viral infection is more.
So drink plenty of fluids orally and keep your self hydrated.
Avoid oily and spicy food.
Do warm water gargles and steam inhalation 4-5 times a day.
Continue nasal spray.
Also take broad spectrum antibiotic like levofloxacin or Azithromycin.
Don't worry, you will be alright with all these.
Hope I have solved your query. I will be happy to help you further. Wish you good health. Thanks.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 4 minutes later
Thank you for your help. You set my mind at ease.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 2 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Please close the conversation and rate my answer.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your follow up question on Healthcare Magic.
I can understand your concern.
Thanks for your kind words. It's always encouraging for doctors to hear positive feedback from patients.
Hope I have solved your query.
If you are not having further queries, then please close the conversation and rate my answer.
You can ask me directly on bit.ly/askdrkaushalbhavsar.
Wish you good health. Thanks.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 3 minutes later
Sorry to ask another question, what is steam inhalation?? I have a humidifier. Is steam inhalation different or will a humidifier work?
doctor
Answered by Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 30 minutes later
Brief Answer:
No, both are different.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your follow up question on Healthcare Magic.
I can understand your concern.
No, both are different.
Steam inhalation is inhaling steam (vapors of boiling water) through nose.
You should boil water and vapors developed after this should be inhaled through nose.
Have you tried this before?
And I also forget to ask you 1 more thing.
What is your weight?
This is needed to guide you dose of antibiotic (levofloxacin or Azithromycin).
So please reply me answers of above asked questions, so that I can guide you better. I will be happy to help you further. Wish you good health. Thanks.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 3 minutes later
IHave not tried steam inhaler before. My height is 6 ft, 180 lbs.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 2 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Take levofloxacin 500mg once a day for 5 days.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your follow up question on Healthcare Magic.
I can understand your concern.
Take levofloxacin (500mg) or Azithromycin (500mg) once a day for five years.
And start steam inhalation 4-5 times a day.
Don't worry, you will be alright.
Hope I have solved your query. If you are not having further queries, then please close the conversation and rate my answer.
You can ask me directly on bit.ly/askdrkaushalbhavsar. Wish you good health. Thanks.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 10 minutes later
5 years?
doctor
Answered by Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 4 minutes later
Brief Answer:
I am extremely sorry. That was typing error.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your follow up question on Healthcare Magic.
Oh. So sorry. That was typing error.
It's not 5 years, it's for only 5 days.
Sorry again.
Hope I have solved your query.
If you are not having further queries, then please close the conversation and rate my answer.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Prasad
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 22 minutes later
Thanks for clarifying. I appreciate your time and knowledge.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 1 minute later
Brief Answer:
Please close the conversation and rate my answer.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your follow up question on Healthcare Magic.
Thanks for your kind words. It's good that my advice is helping you.
Hope I have solved your query.
If you are not having further queries, then please close the conversation and rate my answer.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Prasad
doctor
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