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What causes shortness of breath with abnormal breathing sounds?

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Posted on Mon, 14 Dec 2015
Question: I am getting out of breath with activity, and can hear a squeaking sound when I'm breathing while sitting. I don't have a cold, no cough, no fever, and this just started a few days ago. I've had pneumonia before so I'm afraid of it becoming that, but can you have congestion in your lungs without any other cold or flu symptoms?
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Answered by Dr. Saddiq Ulabidin (23 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
You need to have pulmonary function tests and Xray chest

Detailed Answer:
Hi! Welcome to health care magic!

Based on the history you have shared, it can be a sequelae of partially treated pneumonia or allergic brochitis. The sounds which you have mentioned are produced when air passes through narrow air ways. It can be due to allergic constriction of airways or after infections. Bronchitis or asthma are notorious causes. You need to have pulmonary function tests and a repeated Xray chest to look for any persitance of infection, even in the abscence of cough and fever. Shortness of breath alone can't be ignored, and with the sounds you mentioned, it favors pulmonary causes over cardiac or decreased hemoglobin levels but still for reassurance you may be asked for an EKG and complete blood picture by your GP. Before visiting your GP, you can start with steam neubilisations and inhalations. That will give you symptomatic relief.

If these sounds or shortness of breath increase, consult nearest ER and get neubilisations with short acting bronchodilators like salbutamol and ipratropium at the earliest, until the sound and shortness of breath settles. Steroid shot may also be needed of amount of oxygen reaching your blood stream is getting compromised or in chest auscultation wheeze or rhonchi are present. In that case, even if shortness of breath settles with these measures, take home antibiotics course and inhalers of salbutamol may be given by your attending doctor. Meanwhile avoid exposure to cold and use hot beverages with steam inhalations.

Hoping you a speedy recovery. If you have any more questions, feel free to ask. Regards.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Raju A.T
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Follow up: Dr. Saddiq Ulabidin (16 minutes later)
Thank you for the thorough explanation. I'll make an appointment.
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Answered by Dr. Saddiq Ulabidin (8 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
Closing remarks

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your input. Keep me apprised of the outcome. Hoping you a speedy recovery. Regards.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Raju A.T
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Answered by
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Dr. Saddiq Ulabidin

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2011

Answered : 3941 Questions

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What causes shortness of breath with abnormal breathing sounds?

Brief Answer: You need to have pulmonary function tests and Xray chest Detailed Answer: Hi! Welcome to health care magic! Based on the history you have shared, it can be a sequelae of partially treated pneumonia or allergic brochitis. The sounds which you have mentioned are produced when air passes through narrow air ways. It can be due to allergic constriction of airways or after infections. Bronchitis or asthma are notorious causes. You need to have pulmonary function tests and a repeated Xray chest to look for any persitance of infection, even in the abscence of cough and fever. Shortness of breath alone can't be ignored, and with the sounds you mentioned, it favors pulmonary causes over cardiac or decreased hemoglobin levels but still for reassurance you may be asked for an EKG and complete blood picture by your GP. Before visiting your GP, you can start with steam neubilisations and inhalations. That will give you symptomatic relief. If these sounds or shortness of breath increase, consult nearest ER and get neubilisations with short acting bronchodilators like salbutamol and ipratropium at the earliest, until the sound and shortness of breath settles. Steroid shot may also be needed of amount of oxygen reaching your blood stream is getting compromised or in chest auscultation wheeze or rhonchi are present. In that case, even if shortness of breath settles with these measures, take home antibiotics course and inhalers of salbutamol may be given by your attending doctor. Meanwhile avoid exposure to cold and use hot beverages with steam inhalations. Hoping you a speedy recovery. If you have any more questions, feel free to ask. Regards.