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Dr. Andrew Rynne
Dr. Andrew Rynne

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What causes hyperventilation,pain in chest and numbness in hands?

Answered by
Dr. Vishal Garala


Practicing since :2009

Answered : 1714 Questions

Posted on Thu, 11 Sep 2014 in Mental Health
Question: Hi!
I snapped a ligament or something in my ankle about 3.5 weeks ago.. and from the minute i started using the crutches at the ER, I began to hyperventilate. This has gotten increasingly worse.. so much so that if I don.t take a half a pill of xanax (.25 mg) every 2 hours (prescribed by my pa), i can.t function. I hyperventilated when i was younger when upset on occasion, but XXXXXXX t done it in years until this. The burning pain in my lungs, the numbness in my hands and forearms is terrifying and makes it worse. I have now studied breathing techniques and have changed to diaphragm breathing (when i remember).. but I don't want to live on xanax forever.. and most of all i want to know HOW/WHY DID THIS HAPPEN? and can it pass? it just seems to be getting worse... any insight will be appreciated!
Answered by Dr. Vishal Garala 58 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Hi, All symptoms suggestive of anxiety and panic.

Detailed Answer:

I admire you for positive outlook.

Hyperventilation, pain in chest, numbness etc are symptoms of anxiety.

Anxiety may result of unconscious fear or repressed memory from past.

when it is present in daily activity so called GAD. Generalized anxiety disorder.

But when it exaggerated in intensity it will lead to panic attack.

Panic attack is define as sudden rise in anxiety symptoms and reach peak within 15 min.

Symptoms are chest pain, difficulty in breathing, tremor, sweating, palpitation etc.

When you rush for investigation, it came normal.

As you mentioned that reports came normal inspite of you have such problem.

It is due to Problem is at the level of neuron and neurotransmitters.

Your heart and lungs are abstrusely normal and it has no abnormality.

Tab Xanax is kind of benzodiazapine that control anxiety symptoms and give you quick relief.

But it will control symptomatically.

Main treatment consist to balance neurotransmitters level in brain. Among them serotonin is the main neurotransmitter.

I prefer SSRI means selective serotonin re uptake inhibitor in such kind of patients mainly Tab paroxetin is very helpful.

Mouth dissolving form of Xanax is also useful to control immediate panic symptoms.

Usually it takes time to control Panic. Usually i prefer it to take up to 6 to 9 month regularly for better control.

Cognitive behavior therapy is also alternate therapy for uncontrolled panic attack.Need to consult CBT therapist for further assistance.

Deep breathing exercise or progressive muscle relaxation method is very useful to control anxiety.
Please read more about how to do progressive muscle relaxation on net.
It usually perform 2 to 3 times in a day.

Apart from this following will help you to handle daily stress.

Deep breathing and hyperventilation

proper sleep and healthy diet.

stress free activity
do pleasurable activity
Music and hobbies

Discuss with friends
see all thing with different angle
positive outlook
Daily scheduled activity and stick on it.

Still have a query then feel free to ask.

Happy to help you.

Thank you.

Get well soon.
Take care.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Vinay Bhardwaj

The User accepted the expert's answer

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