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Causes for Low Oxygen when Heart rate increases

Posted by Theresa on April 13, 1999 at 12:21:50
Are there any other causes besides Pulmonary Hypertension or blood clot that can cause your oxygen levels in your blood stream to go down when your heart rate goes up?   Is it possible that it is not a serious problem?

Posted by CCF CARDIO MD-APS on April 14, 1999 at 10:52:59
Dear Theresa,
Low oxygen content in the blood is serious regardless of the cause and will cause pulmonary hypertension if not corrected.
The potential causes of low oxygen content are limited and include:
1.Low saturation of oxygen in the air you breathe (high altitudes.)
2.Low oxygen carrying capacity, i.e. low hemoglobin (blood cell number, anemia.)
3.Lung disorder that disallows the passage of oxygen in to the bloodstream
4.Circulatory failure which prevents the heart from getting blood to the lungs for oxygenation.
5.Shunting of unoxygenated blood from the right to the left thereby bypassing the lungs and the normal oxygenation pathway.
6.Any process in the right side of the heart (right atrium, right ventricle, and pulmonary arteries) that prevents or impedes the passage of blood from getting to the lungs for oxygentation before being dumped in to the left heart for delivery to the body.
I hope this information is useful. Information provided in the heart forum is for
general purposes only.  Only your physician can provided specific diagnoses and therapies.
Feel free to write back with further questions. Good luck!
If you would like to make an appointment at the Cleveland Clinic Heart Center, please
call 1-800-CCF-CARE or inquire online by using the Heart Center website at
www.ccf.org/heartcenter. The Heart Center website contains a directory of the
cardiology staff that can be used to select the physician best suited to address your
cardiac problem.

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