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Old 11-06-2009, 07:45 AM   #1
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Trouble taking breaths? Shortness of Breath?

Hi Everyone. I am still in limboland. I have had symptoms for about 5 years and they have started to get worse. Balance issues, dizziness, weakness in hands and legs, nausea. Neuro hasn't dx me since my MRI is non-specific, LP normal, other tests normal. Have had 5 MRI's over the years all with and without contrast - all remained the same, no changes, cervical was normal. Granted, I haven;t been back to the neuro in over 1 year, so I am not sure if maybe this has changed. My husband and I haven;t been trying to get pregnant and I have focused on that. We are havign trouble so we turned to IVF and we did a cycle in Sept but it resulted in a miscarriage at 4 weeks.

I sometimes wonder now if having a baby is a good idea since my symptoms are starting to get worse, but I have my good days and I forget about it. Plus I am still not 100% sure it is MS, but most of my symptoms lead there. The only thing diagnostically is that have non-specific white spots on my brain MRI, but doc said they are not classical for MS.

I wanted to ask you all on here about a strange symptom I have been getting lately and it's scary. I have trouble taking deep breaths and shortness of breath with activity. Almost like my diaphram won't open all the way?? I do moderate excercise - ellptical, stationary bike, and have noticed it is hard for me to take a deep breath. I don't overexert myself either. I have also noticed it is hard to take a deep yawn. sounds weird, I know, but it's really strange. I sometimes get this even when I am resting. I wonder if it is my heart or something. I get chest tightness and a cold feeling in the chest too. Wondering if this is the MS hug or something, but the trouble breathing thing is really scary. I have an appt with my primary doc next week to check things out. I am not overweight or anything like that. I used to run and workout a lot. I have cut back due to these balance issues, etc, but I don't consider myself out of shape.

Sorry for long post....but any feedback would be great!

Rachel

 
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Old 11-06-2009, 08:44 AM   #2
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Re: Trouble taking breaths? Shortness of Breath?

Prior to the shortness of breath can you sense a "hug"? I have shortness of breath when the hug presents. At night, if I do not elevate my head, I also will experience breaathing difficulties.
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Last edited by MSJayhawk; 11-06-2009 at 09:33 AM. Reason: grammar

 
Old 11-06-2009, 11:31 AM   #3
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Re: Trouble taking breaths? Shortness of Breath?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MSJayhawk View Post
Prior to the shortness of breath can you sense a "hug"? I have shortness of breath when the hug presents. At night, if I do not elevate my head, I also will experience breaathing difficulties.
The hug feeling doesn;t really come before or after. Sometimes it does, but most the time the breathing thing is by itself.

Thanks MSJAYHawk for responding...

 
Old 11-06-2009, 01:47 PM   #4
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Re: Trouble taking breaths? Shortness of Breath?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rachel4123 View Post
Hi Everyone. I am still in limboland. I have had symptoms for about 5 years and they have started to get worse. Balance issues, dizziness, weakness in hands and legs, nausea. Neuro hasn't dx me since my MRI is non-specific, LP normal, other tests normal. Have had 5 MRI's over the years all with and without contrast - all remained the same, no changes, cervical was normal. Granted, I haven;t been back to the neuro in over 1 year, so I am not sure if maybe this has changed. My husband and I haven;t been trying to get pregnant and I have focused on that. We are havign trouble so we turned to IVF and we did a cycle in Sept but it resulted in a miscarriage at 4 weeks.

I sometimes wonder now if having a baby is a good idea since my symptoms are starting to get worse, but I have my good days and I forget about it. Plus I am still not 100% sure it is MS, but most of my symptoms lead there. The only thing diagnostically is that have non-specific white spots on my brain MRI, but doc said they are not classical for MS.

I wanted to ask you all on here about a strange symptom I have been getting lately and it's scary. I have trouble taking deep breaths and shortness of breath with activity. Almost like my diaphram won't open all the way?? I do moderate excercise - ellptical, stationary bike, and have noticed it is hard for me to take a deep breath. I don't overexert myself either. I have also noticed it is hard to take a deep yawn. sounds weird, I know, but it's really strange. I sometimes get this even when I am resting. I wonder if it is my heart or something. I get chest tightness and a cold feeling in the chest too. Wondering if this is the MS hug or something, but the trouble breathing thing is really scary. I have an appt with my primary doc next week to check things out. I am not overweight or anything like that. I used to run and workout a lot. I have cut back due to these balance issues, etc, but I don't consider myself out of shape.

Sorry for long post....but any feedback would be great!

Rachel
Have you been checked for asthma? I know I get symptoms like you describe and I have asthma. Try not to get too anxious about your breathing trouble, I know it is easier said than done. Anxiety can cause breathing difficulties to worsen. I hope you are feeling better soon. Wishing you the best.

Positive Thinkin

Last edited by Positivethinkin; 11-06-2009 at 02:13 PM.

 
Old 11-06-2009, 02:38 PM   #5
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Re: Trouble taking breaths? Shortness of Breath?

Hi. Of course I could be wrong, but to me, this doesnt sound at all like the hug....it doesnt even sound like a MS thing....Positive Thinking might be right that it is asthma related, Im guessing cardio related.
You said youre not doing strenuous exercise, but any eliptical or workout like you describe, does raise the heart rate and CAN cause deep breathing issues.

Of course, this is just a guess. I would defintaely talk to your doctor about it- possibly he will order a stress test for you, which you should ace, since its alot like a treadmill test. But, it will monitor your heart rate and your breathing capability and see if there is anything else going on.

Those of us with MS, and even those of us in limbo-land, tend to forget that not everything is MS related, and sometimes we assume its "nothing" when in reality its something...go get checked out. Probably its nothing, but just to be safe....
Hope it stops as quickly as it came on....
Nikki
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Old 11-07-2009, 01:10 AM   #6
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Re: Trouble taking breaths? Shortness of Breath?

Hi,

I experience breathing difficulties alongside similar symptoms. This week they have been particularly bad at night. I have had asthma for 10 years so I have assumed that is the problem especially since there has been a drop in temperature which does have an impact on asthma. You do need to get this checked out; asthma is a condition that needs treatment to control it. It's a frightening condition but is more often than not controlled very successfully with different inhalers. There may be some triggers i.e. things you are allergic too. I am allergic to cats, feathers, eggs and the flu jabs. These allergies are exactly the same as my fathers. Maybe somebody in your family has asthma?
Go and get it checked swiftly; hopefully you can get it treated and feel much more comfortable and less worried.

 
Old 11-30-2009, 02:45 PM   #7
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Re: Trouble taking breaths? Shortness of Breath?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MSJayhawk View Post
Prior to the shortness of breath can you sense a "hug"? I have shortness of breath when the hug presents. At night, if I do not elevate my head, I also will experience breaathing difficulties.
Hi MSJayhawk, read your response and have a question. For about 5 years, have had asthma type tightening in my chest (I do have asthma attacks as well), which ER and drs couldn't hear any wheezing with, and left unexplained. In waiting to hear about MRI results for MS, I have been researching MS, and it has crossed my mind that these tight, 'can't get a deep breath' type of feelings might actually be the MS Hug possibly. Would you know if others have expressed it to feel that way - as if their asthma was tightening everything up in around their lungs, and yet had no wheezing? It makes you feel very tired inside and unable to feel 'relaxed' in your chest. Thanks for your help.

 
Old 11-30-2009, 04:00 PM   #8
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Re: Trouble taking breaths? Shortness of Breath?

When my MS decides to "hug" me, I never get any wheezing. That said, others might be affected differently. Since you have asthma, I would inquire with your doctor if he thought the "non-wheezing" tightness is something other than asthma. I have several friends with asthma, and my "MS Hug" is always different than their asthma attacks.
I hope my answer is not too "muddled"
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Old 11-30-2009, 04:45 PM   #9
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Re: Trouble taking breaths? Shortness of Breath?

Thanks, could you clarify whether the MS Hug can be a tight, constricting feeling WITHOUT having sharp or specific pain associated with it? Also, how long would an attack of the hug last, minutes, hours, days??? Maybe different each time?

Last edited by waiting4answers; 11-30-2009 at 04:56 PM. Reason: more questions

 
Old 11-30-2009, 08:20 PM   #10
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Re: Trouble taking breaths? Shortness of Breath?

In a word, Yes. As to how long, compared to my friends' asthma attacks, my hugs are longer. But to tell you the truth, I really do not pay much attention to them now that I have gotten use to them. They still come by and visit like an annoying pest, but I do not pay them much attention. Most of mine have been in waves which might last several minutes at a time, but never continually for hours (though it seems like an eternity!! ).
__________________
MS diagnosed since October 3, 1982
MS onset circa 1977
Proud to be MED FREE!
Eternally blessed and eternally optimistic!<><

 
Old 11-30-2009, 08:53 PM   #11
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Re: Trouble taking breaths? Shortness of Breath?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MSJayhawk View Post
In a word, Yes. As to how long, compared to my friends' asthma attacks, my hugs are longer. But to tell you the truth, I really do not pay much attention to them now that I have gotten use to them. They still come by and visit like an annoying pest, but I do not pay them much attention. Most of mine have been in waves which might last several minutes at a time, but never continually for hours (though it seems like an eternity!! ).
Thanks for your reply MSJayhawk. I think I have really picked up on something today with my research. For these past years, I have had many "attacks" that no dr. could ever figure out - by ambulance to ER etc. and then told 'don't know why you feel the way you are describing' etc. Lungs would be clear etc., and I was left trying to figure out what was going on in my chest - when I felt like I was having the trouble breathing of an asthma attack, and yet no wheezing. Sometimes this has lasted for more than a day. Hot weather has really done some of these terrible attacks where I felt like something was crushing me and preventing a good breath. Felt like I was 'fading away' - also had no physical strength to walk or climb stairs. I am still waiting for my MRI so I realize that although I have found another part of my physical history to match with MS, I can't be sure yet that it is my problem. I realize that the MRI might not be conclusive either, but I am praying that I might find some answers that help! Thanks once again. I appreciate this board a lot Thanks for taking time to answer. God bless.

 
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