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Constant Shorntess Of Breath-Gasping And Clearing of throat
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Constant Shorntess Of Breath-Gasping And Clearing of throat

Hi,im a 22 year old male and i've been dealing with this constant shortness of breath for over 6-7 years now. I written on a forum about this before but just hadd to write one again. Its hard to say but doctors have no idea what's wrong with me.I see so mnay people dealing with this problem and it seems like theres no diagnosis. It just strated outta the blue I went to take a deep breath and i couldnt get that last bit of hair to satisfy the breath and this whole vicious cycle started. After that for about 2 years i was constantly taking deep breaths and not able to get a satisfied breath. I WAS CONSTANTLY YAWNING>SIGNING AND TAKIN UNSATISFIED DEEP BREATH ALL DAY LONG. I had reached the point when i was staying home in my bed just hoping i would die so it would stop.  After 2 years or so it seemed to just go away. It then came back right after i smoked a cigarette . Ever since then its been an ongoing struggle. I feel as if i have no control of my life, and im constantly thinking of my breathing. I feel hopeless and feel as if no one understands what im going through or that i have this disease that doctors cant detect. My doctor has put me on xanax for anxiety and it seemed to cut the edge off a lil but its still there. Its not as bad as when i first got it but it still disrupts my life. I can only work 2 days, i don't go to school  and i don't have much of a happy life .I've gone to cardiologist, ent's, gi's, pulmonary doctors. I've gone through xrays, PFT, EKG, stress tests, endoscopy . Only thing i have is GERD/LPR with sinsation of lump in throat and a very small irregular heart beat. I also am constantly clearing my throat.I heard that can be because of the Gerd/LPR. I just took a new PFT test and my breathing is normal. i did have a deviated septum but got that fixed..My lung specialist says its just all in my head and that i have this because ive become aware of my breathing pattern. i've used advair, singular and breathing pumps for asthma with no results. when im sitting or laying down its seems to be fine but when i stand up or move it kicks in more. I'm losing hope on what's going on with me. Does anyone have this?If so can anyone recommend anything else i should look for? the only thing i really want to do is a MRI or CT scan but doctors say 99 percent sure nothing will show.Has anyone heard of chronic hyperventilation syndrome? or phrenic nerve damage?cant shortness of breath and gerd be related if anyone can be of help please email me or post a message?
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13 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_m_tn
I don't think you need to necessarily go to another doctor.  It looks like you have had the tests and they have cleared you of anything wrong medically.  What you describe, in my opinion, is "classic" health anxiety.  I was the exact same way when I thought something was wrong with my heart.  I felt every little palpatation, pain, etc and thought the doctors MUST be missing something, but yet years later I am still here.

You mention going to see multiple MDs...have you ever gotten any counseling from a therapist?  Remember the mind can be a powerful tool which can steer you sometimes when it comes to hypochondria...we can search and search and search and yet the main problem is with anxiety...learning about it can go a long way to accepting it and confronting it in my experience with this.  
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Avatar_m_tn
the person above is quite right...your mind IS a powerful tool...and it's specifically designed to make your body function and keep it from danger. that means if it believes you have a problem, then you feel symptoms of that problem.

i had exactly the same problem as you when i was very young. i've been diagnosed with OCD...this was prior to that. i had all the breathing problems you described and they went on for months. i would have to actually make myself keep breathing at times...it felt like it wasn't an involuntary action anymore. i also felt a huge lump in my throat and had a hard time breathing...almost like asthma. my mom took me to a doctor and had all the tests done. he told me it was just a 'lazy muscle' and that it would get stronger and all my symptoms would go away....and they did. the thing was i was very young at the time and truly believed what he was telling me. had i been 20...i never would have bought that. but as a kid, i truly believed him and since nothing was really wrong, my symptoms went away. you obviously don't truly believe there's nothing wrong with you so you can't know for sure if your symptoms will go away when you get over the anxiety of your problem. i think what the above person mentioned is a good idea...you should see a  psychologist...and then if they think it's a good idea, maybe a psychiatrist.

the clearing of the throat....well i had that issue for the past  year and a half...but it turns out i was allergic to smoking. haha. i quit and haven't had a problem since. do you smoke? if not have you had allergy tests? i have very bad allergies...it causes really nasty drainage which results in the constant need to clear the throat. but you mentioned smoking...obviously thats a bad idea for all the problems you've mentioned....but i'm not sure if you still actually smoke.
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Avatar_m_tn
Get yourself a breathing exercise CD....i had exactly what you had for 2 years, im now fine.  Its all axiety. You need to learn how to breath correctly again.  
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Avatar_f_tn
I started getting short of breath just reading what you wrote.  Any anxiety at all will cause me to think i am having shortness of breath.  The more I concentrate on it the more I cant breath.  I know its hard at first not to focus on it, but I have been having to deal with my anxiety for over 15 or so years.  I can breath again.  I'm also in the midst of xanax withdrawal and when then comes in full force I'll feel insane with lack of air.  Years of therapy and medication helped me.
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Avatar_f_tn
I started getting short of breath just reading what you wrote.  Any anxiety at all will cause me to think i am having shortness of breath.  The more I concentrate on it the more I cant breath.  I know its hard at first not to focus on it, but I have been having to deal with my anxiety for over 15 or so years.  I can breath again.  I'm also in the midst of xanax withdrawal and when then comes in full force I'll feel insane with lack of air.  Years of therapy and medication helped me.
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Avatar_n_tn
Dont just write it off as anxiety, many physical conditions can cause or mimic anxiety.
Get your thyroid checked. How well do you eat ? Are you constipated and/or have diareah ? How much do you weigh ? Do you have sleep apnea ?
Are you taking any types of vitamins ? Supplements ??

I had this condition also, Started in February and it was so bad I wanted to kill myself, period. I since have lost 91 libs, been diagnosed with a hiatal hernia and gastritis and have sleep apnea, and awaiting the results of thrtoid bloodwork.

Relax, it can and will go away, it isnt all in your head, something triggered you to be conscious of your breathing, that is true, but once you clear up any issues you may have, you can get this problem to go away.....

Do you breathe through your nose ? Do so at all times.
Take B12 vitamins, sublingual if possible, A multi-B complex with high doses of "C",as much as you can tolerate. Take magnesium, three times a day.
Drunk water, at least a full glass every 1/2 to two hours, get sleep, eat small meals, dont lay down after you eat, dont drink caffeine,
go for a walk every day, one hour a day, no matter what. Believe you can and will make this go away......

Give me some more info and I can try and be of more assistance.

Be strong, patient and it will go away, simple as that
Take care,
write back
Geoffrey
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480448_tn?1403547723
Welcome to the forum!  First of all......my advice is to STOP chasing a probably non-existant medical diagnosis.  Us people with anxiety would actually rather have a physical illness, b/c at least it would "make sense", ya know?

It sounds as though you've had a very thorough work-up medically.  IF there was something wrong, they would have found it by now, 9 1/2 times out of 10!  Also, the fact that this HAS briefly improved without medical intervention, and also has improved with the Xanax, really points to anxiety.  And, as you can see from the replies you've received, this is a VERY common manifestation of anxiety.

Get yourself to a psychiatrist, who can help you with therapy AND meds, if needed.  I think you really need to give that a try.....and remember it may take some time, and some hard work on your part.  Just put your mind to it and do what it takes.  It certainly couldn't hurt, right?

NO offense to the poster above, but do not try to self fix this with supplements, not without first really tryng to attack it from an anxiety standpoint with a good specialist.  You may only be inviting trouble if you add on a new regimen, not to mention, adding several supplements like that, especially when they are recommended at high doses can lead to serious metabolic abnormalities (electrolyte imbalances) which CAN lead to physical problems..  

I DO agree that if you haven't ruled out thyroid problems with your doc, do that before proceeding.  I'd bet a lot of money that that was one of the first things they looked at, though.

Best of luck...stick around...you're amongst a lot of people who feel your pain...and a lot of people who have come out on the other side of the same issues you have.

Take care and hang in there.
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Avatar_n_tn
No, my thyroid was never checked. Just the basic number from the standard test, which by the way - was low. And this problem, although is anxiety related, its in many cases a cause of the anxiety.
Hiatal hernias impact the diapraghm and cause you not to catch your breath, in turn makes you panic and its a catch 22 situation. There are alos many other physical causes that cause this sensation, Mitral valve prolapse, congestive heart failure, anemia, just to name a few........

Nobody should just "accept" a diagnosis and the wait fir the cure to come, nobody know their own body better than that prson......Did you know thyroid issues can cause anxiety also ??
Strange but true and also, it took three different doctors to finally find the hiatal hernia and four different doctord without knowing what the other had said telling the same diagnosis.
Sleep apnea, untreated can cause air hunger, ie: throw off the brain signal to the diapraghm telling it to contract when not needed.
Pickwickian syndrome in obese people cna cause a problem with CO2 gasses, causing the sensation of not catching a deep breath, all have nothing to do with anxiety.
When I take Xanax, it does/did nothing to help imrove my breathing, I had to find cures for myself. And promised I would pass along the info I found just in case I could help one person, I wouldnt wish this condition on anyone.

Geoffrey
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363281_tn?1353103243
I have high anxiety, and I get that "not being able to get a good breath" feeling myself. I hate it and when I really worry about it, it gets worse. All the docs have given me a clean bill of health, they say I worry too much about how I feel, but, hey, when you gasp for air, it is frightening. I remember when mother was in the hospital so much, I was ALWAYS short of breath, but, when I went to bed, it would go away, but, when I got up, there it was. Dog-gone anxiety, it can bring on so many unpleasant symptoms.

Oh yes, I have a hiatal hernia too, and sometimes it acts up and bothers me. Hard to say what brings this on, but, it sure does not take much.
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Avatar_n_tn
"It's all in your head".  Lord I hate hearing that.  It is NOT in your head and gerd can cause the symptoms you are explaining.  I've had two nissan surgeries and since the second one has started coming unwrapped , I have the same symptoms you do.  The lump you feel in your throat is indicative of an inflamed esophagus and normal for those of us who have gerd.  I doubt there is anything they can do about mine, but they may be able to help yours.  Have they done a ph test with the little monitor hanging just above your pyloric stomach valve?  They run it up your nose and down your esophagus and you have to wear it for 24 hours to monitor the amount of acid coming up.  Not pleasant but it will give you a better idea of what you are up against.  As one who has had two nissan wraps(both have come either fully or partially undone), make sure that is a last resort.  My last one was so bad I've pretty much been on anti nausea meds and a liquid diet for the last 5 years.  And my surgeon is supposed to be one of the best in the country.  Be careful, because untreated gerd can lead to Barret's syndrome which is where the cells in your esophagus turn to pre cancerous cells(which is what mine are).  Once that happens they have to go in about every two years and take a biopsy to look for changes.
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Avatar_f_tn
I am a 19 year old girl and have the same problem I am going to a pulmonary doctor tomorrow so I am not sure really whats wrong with me, I was diagnosed with asthma 2 years ago been since this last december I have not been able to breathe, I have the same symptoms as you and I'm not rreally sure any one understands exactly how bad it actually is. It feels like you're holding your breath all the time and you're suffocating its not funny nd its not a joke. If you have had all of those tests I am bot sure what to tell you because I have not but it happens to me whether Im sitting or standing, excercising or not. I am very healthy, I eat right and 5'6'' and weight 125lbs. I have alot of trouble believeing it is anxiety I am a very content and happy person. It irritates me that al of those people are telling you its in your head. you dont just wake up one day and decide oh I can't breathe. Your voluntary muscles dont just say oh im not gonna work today unless there is something wrong with them. If you are miserable like me.. do whatever you can to get help even if that does mean going to a psychologist but you dont need mental medication,, dont buy it once you do you're dependent on something to make you feel alright.
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480448_tn?1403547723
The problem with anxiety is that it DOES cause very real physical symptoms....symptoms anyone going thru them would SWEAR are medical related. No one is saying NOT to look into and rule out a medical condition...but there comes a time, after ALL of the tests and all of the visits to specialists, where one has to consider a diagnosis of anxiety and attack it from that angle.

While I certainly understand that the sensation of not being able to breathe is a scary one....if a person has had a thorough work-up....a doctor would at least be able to tell them that despite what they FEEL like, they are getting enough oxygen....there are some very simple tests that can determine that.  

Therefore, while I'm all for ruling out a medical condition...sometimes people torture themselves for years and spends thousands on medical bills, when after they finally seek treatment for anxiety, they improve after all.
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Avatar_f_tn
i feel like i have the same thing..but im not fully sure its been for the past week and keeps getting worse and worse by day. i went to the doctors and he said the it might be because im stressed.. anxious..or axiety? but its really bothering me because ive been stressed before and this has never happen..if its axiety i dont know what the reason is because im not panicing about antything. uhm i constantly feel like theres a air bubble in my throat and so i gasp for air and most of the time the gasping is not under my control and it gets really bad, they are somewhat hiccups but gasping at the same time. please help =(
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