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14 year old has shortness of breath, tightness in her chest , throat ex...
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14 year old has shortness of breath, tightness in her chest , throat exercising

My 14 year old daughter dances HIP HOP and lately she has complained that she feels shortness of breath, and tightness in her chest and throat after dancing for a while.  It is worse if the temperature in the room is in the mid-70s and it helps her a little is she breaths into her shirt.
This is affecting her performances...what can this be?  

She suffers from allergies and takes Zyrtec and Flonase everyday.  

Thanks
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251132_tn?1198082422
There are several possibilities for difficulty breathing with activity. It is possible that this is a form of exercise-induced asthma. I would recommend that you speak with your family doctor about this problem and discuss finding the cause and a treatment.
10 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
Has she been tested for asthma? I would suggest having her tested for asthma and also talking to her doctor about vocal chord dysfunction. It often has the same symptoms as asthma.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi,

Just reading the post about your daughter. I'm 22, and I've recently been getting shortness of breath, tightness in my chest..and my throat does some weird wiggle thing at the top.  I'm getting a chest xray and a pulmonary function test within the next two weeks, I was wondering if this sounds like asthma, I don't smoke, but I understand that that doesn't matter...I understand what she is going through...it can be a little scary, not knowing what you have...and scary for you. I hope she is fine.  
For really anyone, a general question, I've had a few chest xrays this year because I injured my sternum, I was wondering that if it was something like lung cancer, or anything like that they would have found it the first time in the xrays? I'm just a little paranoid...and I guess a little anxious. Thank you to anyone who can answer me. :)
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Avatar_n_tn
I recently was diagnosed w/asthma. I'm a 25 y/o female. Are you going to your doctor or are you seeing a respiratory specialist? Be careful b/c I went to my PCP at first and she wasn't much help, she diagnosed me w/anxiety. I too was having shortness of breath, so I made myself an appt at a respiratory specialist. I went to see the specialist and he gave me his undivided attention. They did a chest x-ray, EKG, and a Pulmonary Function test. You get the reults right then and there. My chest X-ray came back showing that my lungs were fine, an EKG showed that my heart was beating fast, and my Pulmonary Function test came back saying my breathing was above normal. The specialist was concerned b/c he said shortness of breath can be a sign of heart disease, so he made an appt for me to see a cardiologist to have an Echocardiogram done. He also made an appt for me to have another Pulmonary Function test but this time I would inhale a lung irritant to see if it was asthma. I went to have my echo done and got the results a 2 weeks later, everything was normal w/my heart. I then went to take the 2nd Pulmonary Function test, which was a Methacholine Challenge Test. This is where they will make you inhale a lung irritant to see how it affects your breathing. They will first make you go through the regular breathing test w/out the irritant to see how your lungs are functioning, then they will have you inhale the Methacholine and do the breathing test again to see how it affects your lungs. Youu have 6 rounds of this to do, each round you inhale Methacholine. If by chance your lung functions drop 20% or more during this test they will discontinue the testing and give you a bronchodialator to get your lungs back to how they were. If they have to discontinue the test before you make it to the 6th round it is a sure sign you have asthma. I only made it to the 3rd round before they made me stop.
When I went back to the specialist to find out the results he told me I deffinately have asthma. He prescribed 3 inhalers and some singulair for me. I go back on the 12th of June and he's going to give me another breathing test to see how effective the meds were, then he's going to take me off some of them. My meds haven't helped me all that much, they have helped, just not alot. So, we'll probably have to mix and match until we find the meds that work the best for me. It can be a very long process.
Anyways, if when you take the Pulmonary function test your results come back negative that doesn't mean you don't have asthma. Talk to yor doc about a Methacholine Challenge test, it is a sure way to tell whether or not asthma is the cause of your problems.

Good Luck!!
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi,

  I went to my family doctor first in December probably, he told me that it was anxiety and that there wasn't anything wrong. So when I finished my school semester, I came back to him, told him that I was tired and having trouble breathing still. So he sent me for blood work and EKG, a chest xray, and my pulmonary function test. My blood work, EKG, and chest xray were completly normal.  I have my function test tomorrow morning.  
  I've already had a cardiac stress test, as I thought it was my heart because of my chest pains...but that came back totally normal as well. I did think it was heart disease, but after 10 months of it, I think I would have died or something, and it would have showed on the stress test.
  I guess this lung test is my last option, after this I guess i should be satisfied that I do have anxiety.  I'm slightly hoping for asthma (not major), just so I can finally tell myself that I wasn't going crazy and there was something wrong with me.
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Avatar_n_tn
The test you're going for today, is it a Methacholine CHallenge Test?  If not and the test still comes back normal, request a Methacholine Challenge Test. It will deffinately say whether or not astham is the cause. It's very pricey, so if you don't have insurance I would suggest getting some.

Good Luck Today!! Let me know your results.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi,

  The test said that I was functioning better than average, and that my airways seem to be very sensitive.  An internist is looking at my results, and should be back to my family doctor this week. I'm going to see him again tomorrow because I want to talk to him about it, and my anxiety is messing me up again.
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Avatar_n_tn
Did they perform a Methacholine Challenge test? When I first started seeing my specialist my pulmonary function tests came back normal, actually the doc said they were above normal. It wasn't until I took the Methacholine Challenge that i was diagnosed w/asthma.
I go back to the specialist tomorrow for a check-up. I'm glad b/c these past 2 days my chest area has been feeling soooo tight, my inhalers aren't working. They were working at first, but I went out of town ( Colorado ) and the temperature was much cooler and when I got home I developed a mild cold. I'm thinking the cold made my asthma worse, possible gave me an infection.
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Avatar_n_tn
I'm not sure if you're still reading this page, but I'm 25/f and  have very similar symptoms to yours. I have had pretty consistent trouble breathing now for almost three years. I also have asthma, which isn't at all related to what I've been suffering from now.

It feels as if my airway is blocked. It's difficult to get a breath of air in. It's extremely debilitating, uncomfortable and scary. Shortly after I started getting these symptoms (completely out of the blue,) I started also getting anxiety attacks (which I had never had in my life.)

Today I went to see a pulmanary doctor at the Mass General Hospital and right away he said that I am describing symptoms of Vocal Chord Dysfunction. I'm not positive that that's what I have yet, but I feel like it's a good starting off point. Most importantly, the shortness of breath causes anxiety, and in return, the anxiety causes shortness of breath. So, it's like one viscious cycle. I have done some reading on the VCD and I think certain breathing excercises and relaxation techniques may help in conjunction with treatment for my anxiety. Please let me know how your symptoms are.
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Avatar_n_tn
To all of you who experiece shortness of breath...or maybe feel like you occasionally get satisfying breaths...where you feel that you got enough oxygen to your lungs...ITS NOT ASTHMA!
Its called Vocal Chord Dysfunction, it can be diagnosed by a ENT by inserting a small tube in your nose and watching your vocal chords move as you breathe.  Whats happening is that your vocal chords are closing partly when you inhale, oppistie of what they should be doing, opening.  Treatment is through a Speech Therapist.  I know how frustrating it is...once you seek help it can all change!!!!
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