Avatar universal

Not sure where to go for answers

Hi, I am a 48 year old female with a major chronic health situation that is debilitating, however, I have been unable to find a cause or cure.  
Stats are:
I am obese-about 90 lbs overweight and have been so all of my life without any health repercussions.  I did have a gastric stapling procedure 30 years ago and lost a great deal of weight which gradually came back.  
I am diagnosed asthmatic, mostly controlled with daily Advair.
During a hospital stay for asthma, I  had an echo which showed a grade 1 diastolic dysfunction.  Even though I had +2 edema in my ankles, nobody even mentioned the DD until my doctor eventually read the report when he couldn't' figure out the edema.  I was treated with Lasix and told it wasn't really a big deal and there was no suggestion of following up with a cardiologist.

My health after that seemed to rebound and I was fine for a couple of years. 4 months ago, I was laid off from my job of 13 years and have suffered some moderate depression for which I was treated.  I am very sedentary and in the last 3 months I have become almost immobilized by muscle weakness and extreme shortness of breath (no wheezing or asthma like symptoms) on mild exertion.  I am fatigued much of the time.  At least one day per week, I suffer from chills and headache so intense that I sleep all day.

I have been tested for everything including epstein barr, h pylori, anemia, thyroid..etc.  all of it. Everything was normal except a significantly low b12 for which I am being treated with intranasal spray (i cannot absorb the vitamins).  
Let me say that I have had b12 deficiency before and pernicious anemia but never felt as sick as I do now.  Also, I have been treated for several weeks now with no reduction in symptoms.  
I am wondering if I am in heart failure?   Recent trip to pulmonologist showed my lungs in great shape.  
I am just very weak and sob and cannot walk up 3 stairs without great effort.  Please help.
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242587 tn?1355424110
The severity of your shortness of breath is worrisome and could well be heart failure, even with an apparently normal size heart on chest X-ray.  If the pulmonologist is correct regarding your lungs being “in great shape” then immediate attention should be focused on your heart, with a repeat Echocardiogram.   Recurrent pulmonary emboli (clots to the lungs) would be another possibility and I suggest you speak to your pulmonologist about that possibility.  

The sedentary existence could surprisingly quickly lead to muscle weakness but another possibility of some type of generalized nerve or muscle disorder that is also effecting your muscles of respiration.

Finally, at least some of your shortness of breath could be on the basis of asthma, or another condition not readily apparent on chest X-ray, bronchiolitis.

While the 90 lbs overweight may really not have been a problem in the past, it might also have become a factor contributing to the shortness of breath.

I suggest that you and your GP seek consultation with a cardiologist and if your heart proves to not be the problem, that you and your GP may want to get a second lung specialist opinion.

One final note.  There may be an indirect linkage between heart failure and vitamin B-12 deficiency.

Given the severity of your symptoms, there is no time to waste.  You should insist on being seen by one or more specialists, able to diagnose your condition and treat it effectively.

Good luck
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Avatar universal
I think you need to seek major professional advice. For instance, go to John Hopkins or Mayo Clinic. Sounds like your situation is going to be tougher to diagnose. A lot of it could be from the depression, too. The mind is a very powerful thing.

If you're 90 pounds over weight, that needs to come off. Start juice fasting! Watch the movie, "Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead." Be sure to check with your doc before you attempt anything, though. They need to check all your stats before you try.
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