Respiratory Disorders Expert Forum
shortness of breath
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shortness of breath

About four months ago I began having many many pvc's and shortness of breath.  I went to a Cardiologist who diagnosed the pvc's as benign ( I had holter monitor and echo stress test) and as of recently they have subsided.  However, the shortness of breath has not, it may actually be worse.  It's like I feel like i am constantly not getting good air.

I had a pulmonary function test and chest x-ray which were both ok.  I think my Doctor is leaning towards this being anxiety related, but would anxiety give you shortness of breath 24/7?

Since this all began I have taken xanax and am currently only taking .25 mg a day because I would like to discontinue it.  It never seemed to help with the shortness of breath.

This is hampering my daily life and I am not sure what to do.  Is this a mental or physical ailment and how should i go about finding out?

Thanks

Lori
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There are many causes for shortness of breath. It is important to know if this difficulty does indeed occur during the night when you are asleep. It is uncommon for psychologic reasons (anxiety) to awaken someone because of shortness of breath. The evaluation for difficulty breathing involves both cardiac and respiratory evaluations. These evaluations can include several tests, including the ones you mentioned. Only when these reasons are ruled out should "anxiety" be entertained as the cause. It is true, however, that someone who is anxious can feel difficulty breathing and have normal lungs and heart.
7 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
Dear Lori,
Just curious as to whether you have been evaluated for vocal chord dysfunction (VCD) and/or gastroesophogeal reflux disease (GERD), as either or both can cause respiratory symptoms including shortness of breath.  Additionally, both are often missed initially as causes of shortness of breath.  Just a thought.
Aloha,
Starion--thriving in HI
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Avatar_n_tn
I have the same EXACT problem.  I have had tachycardia and they blamed it on that, but even when my heart rate is low i still need to take deep cleansing breaths.
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Avatar_n_tn
my breathlessness is getting worse since about 2 years ago. i feel chest tightness and now getting chest pains. lots of palpitations too at rest or exercise. even simple things like brushing teeth or taking shower (esp when moving upper body) makes me breathless. i constantly have a tight/stretched feeling in my central chest towards to throat. and i feel constantly not enough air 24 hours a day. it's definitely getting worse. the tightness/stretched feeling makes me want to cough up 'that thing' but it usually turns out to be 'blook streak sputum'. i feel so scared. i have lots of investigations eg stress test, echo, CXR, bronchoscopy, OGD , PFT, etc. blood tests of ANA ESR are high. PFT normal at one time but restrictive pattern at one time. my echo show increase pulmonary artery pressure at one time but normal at the other. i am so confused and worried. i have a feeling that something very wrong/serious is happening to me. alarmed when coughing up blood. seems that my middle inside chest all stuck together because whenever i lie down i can actually feel a mass pushing inside my chest and cause my swallowing saliva problem and i can hear gurggling noise down my throat.
what is happening? i am scared. any comments?
God bless everyone.
***@****
-worried Zoe
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Avatar_n_tn
I wonder how many ofthese people with breathing problems have mold hidden in thier homes?
I have been sick, with alot of these problems, and my sister reminded me of moldy carpet I pulled up by myself. I have been through many tests with nothing confirmed.  WE are now pulling all of this carpet up.  We had rented our home out to tenants that left much water damage, that we could see.  We are now finding things we couldn't see. Mold behind the bathroom wall, and under all of these carpets.  I was never so sick, so it makes me wonder if this could be a problem for alot of people?  
I think this needs to be looked into and including somehow in the medical tests.
Thank You,
***@****
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Avatar_n_tn
Lori,
I just have to ask if there is any chance of mold growing in your home?
I have had alot of problems,and been through many tests, which do not show this.  I wish they would make a test for this, in regular blood tests.
We rented our home out for a yr. and came back to water damage...
WE just recently found alot of mold under our carpet, and started on ripping it up.  We also found mold behind our bathroom wall.  Since I am fed up with the tests, I am taking benadryl, and a natural antibiotic, and will see if I have improvement as this mold is removed from our home.  I never knew everything it could cause, untill I looked it up on the internet.  This is just not something the drs think of!  Please consider this a dangerous thing, as you search the internet to see what it can cause.
I was amazed at what I learned!
I was told I had an anxiety attack and had none of the symptoms of an anxiety attack.  I thik perhaps when they dont know, they automatically call it anxiety.  This could leave alot of people untreated for the REAL problem.
Please read up on this, if there is any chance mold is in your home.  The drs need to start taking this more serious!
Thank You,
***@****
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Avatar_n_tn
Gallbladder stones or sludge can cause chest pain and shortness of breathe. before i accept anxiety as a diagnosis I would get a complete physical.
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Avatar_m_tn
A related discussion, out of breath was started.
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