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please help... can't breath... What doctor next?

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Old 06-06-2013, 09:25 PM   #1
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kiaimai HB User
please help... can't breath... What doctor next?

I am 26, Female, short of breath. It's the feeling that you've ran a few blocks and are out of breath, but it's all the time. Even going up stairs. No one can tell me what's wrong with me. It started a month and a half ago. I should note that it started along with the warmer weather... although I haven't found a link to that yet. i also have heart palpitations and the feeling that my heart is stalled. I also have i feeling of acid reflux and something feels wierd in my chest under my breastbone. I also smell cigarette smoke all the time even though there are no smokers here ..its a ghost smell.

†One night I woke up from a sound sleep...i sat up, and felt short of breath. I may or may not have panicked, but my heart started pounding fast and HARD... I couldn't stop it. I tried water, sitting, laying..nothing. It was brief, only a minute, but i ended up calling 911 because I was so scared and out of breath..I thought i was having a heart attack and I was alone at night with my 2 year old. They came and checked my bp- 120/82. (usuall is 100/60) My o2 was at 98%, and my pulse was back to normal but i had tremors. I didn't go in to the hospital because i had no one for my daughter.

†The next night was the same but less intense. I worked through it.Every night there on I have not have panic attacks about it because I know I will be ok, but I AM CONSTANTLY OUT OF BREATH. The shortness of breath and the awareness of my heart beating is no longer coming in "attacks", it's constant. I can't even go for a long walk. It's a constant feeling of no air.These are the tests I've had done
.HOLTER MONITOR 24 HR - Average heartbeat is 80, low is 48, high is 128. Occasional PACs. No PVCs. No pauses

.†LIPID W REFLEX-†cholesterol tot. 135,hdl 52, triglycerides 94,LDL 64,CHOL/HDLC ratio 2.6,†NON HDL CHOL 83,†

METABOLIC-†glucose 91,†urea nitrogen 15,†creatinine .74,†eGFR 112,sodium 141,†potassium 4,†chloride 105,†carbon dioxide 24,†calcium 9.9,†protein 7.6,†albumin 4.9,†globulin 2.7,†albumin/globulin ratio 1.8,†biliruben 0.6,†alkaline phosphatase 53,(AST 50 ),†ALT 12, magnesium 2.1,†TSH 5.10, (their scale goes from .4-4.50)

CBC-†white blood cell 8.9,red blood cell 4.24,hemoglobin 13.3,hematocrit 39.7,†mcv 93.5,†mch 31.5,†mchc 33.6,rdw 12.8,platelet count 227

After this i was in the e.r with shortness of breath again and these are the tests they did that came back within range:ECG 12-leadCR chest portable ap only 71010- normal heart and aorta, lung fields clearCBC with auto diffcomp metabolic panelprothrombin timepartial thromboplastin timed dimerestimated glomerular filtration ratepoc troponin 1

Then my doctor did more Thyroid panel to follow up on the high TSH:

TSH w reflex to FT4 -4.05
T4 Thyroxine total-6.0
Free T4 index- 2.1
T3 uptake 35
They told me all this was in range.†Does ANYONE have any idea what doctor i should go see next? I need to find a good doctor in the south suburbs of Chicago or within 30 miles of chicago.They prescribed me lexapro, proair inhaler, and singulair. I have not taken any of them because i do not know what is wrong with me and I don't want to complicate things.Please and thank you.

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Old 06-07-2013, 06:14 PM   #2
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Re: please help... can't breath... What doctor next?

You probably need to see a pulmonologist and if that testing is negative, a gastro.
Many disgestive issues mimic asthma but I'd have a PFT and maybe a methocholine challenge at the pulmo first.

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Old 07-31-2013, 02:02 PM   #3
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Re: please help... can't breath... What doctor next?

First take a deep breath... your symptoms sound more like panic attacks, they can make you feel like you are having a heart attack. That said there are some tests that your family doc can order before going to multiple expensive specialists. Specialists rarely talk to one another and you need a gate keeper or someone like a family doc who looks at the whole picture. Ask you PCP (primary care doc) for a pulmonary function test or PFT, it can tell if something is going one with your lungs and based on the results send you to a lung specialist. The inhaler they gave you is very safe and based on your response to its use can also tell the docs about your lungs. The one specialist I might suggest would be an endocrinologist who deals with the thyroid, your elevate TSH may suggest something even though further testing was symptoms can also be thyroid in nature.

I hope this helps some.

Last edited by mod85; 07-08-2014 at 06:33 PM.

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Old 04-30-2014, 02:09 PM   #4
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I went through the exact thing you describe, to a T!!!! It started at age 27 and I'm now 31. The breathlessness got better but never fully, after q var. But then it got worse recently. The heart racing got better during sleep although it happens sometimes.

You should cut gluten out for a week. Also see a lung Dr asap. Are you a singer or have you done a lot of yelling or screaming?

Are you out of breath talking, laughing, or singing?

Do you ever feel lightheaded after a laugh?

Last edited by moderator2; 04-30-2014 at 04:22 PM.

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Old 04-30-2014, 03:34 PM   #5
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Re: please help... can't breath... What doctor next?

Originally Posted by kiaimai View Post
I am 26, Female, short of breath. It's the feeling that you've ran a few blocks and are out of breath, but it's all the time. ... It started a month and a half ago.
One possibility is an environmental reaction. Right before this started, did you get any new furniture? New rug? New clothes? Have any painting done in your home? New appliances? Did you change your diet? Besides the "ghost smoke" any new odors?
⇒ Avoid unhealthy chemicals,odors,irritants
⇒ 6 low cal meals 1500 cals; weights
⇒ 6.25 coreg;.125 digoxin
⇒ 2002 BP was 151/96; readings:1,423
⇒ From 2008-2017 BP was 119/69; readings:7,514

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Old 06-22-2014, 10:24 AM   #6
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Re: please help... can't breath... What doctor next?

I have had this same problem for years and I finally found out what was going on. I (and I imagine everyone in this discussion) have something called "Hyperventilation Syndrome." Basically, over the years, we have learned to stop breathing deep in our bellies, as all newborns do, and learned to breathe in our chest's. Most of the time this is completely unconscious. Anxiety CAN exacerbate this, but most likely would go completely unnoticed.

Before you say "Its not anxiety! I've tried every antidepressant and gotten all of the tests and nothing came back!" I would tell you that I did the same thing, and it all came back clear. Not being able to breathe and not knowing why is probably one of the most terrifying feelings there is and there have been many times where I have just wanted to take a swan dive over a high bridge. But believe me, there is a solution. First of all, realize that you absoloutely are getting enough air. That is not the problem. You will not die from this. The reason you feel like you are constantly out of breathe is because you are expelling too much carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide is essential for maintaining oxygen levels; so when you don't have enought CO2, your brain realizes this, and attempts to take in more air, giving you that "air hunger" feeling. All you have to do to cure yourself of this is to relearn how to do belly-breathing. Google "Buteyko Method". It is excellent. Also check out the book Hyperventilation Syndrome by Dinah Bradley. Believe me when I tell you that it works and once you learn how to do this you will be fine. Sorry to everyone who is going through this horrible feeling. When it was at its worst, I literally felt like I was suffocating. If you find yourself panicking, just remember - you're expelling too much CO2. The best way to fix this is to breathe "low and slow". Lie on your back and breathe deep into your belly, as slowly as you can. Your chest shouldn't move at all. At first, it will feel very incomfortable; this is because your brain still feels like it needs more air. But what you are doing is slowly restoring the CO2, which will in turn modulate your oxygen. As I am writing this it sounds like a bunch of mumbo jumbo, but believe me it works. If you can't trust some random dude posting on this forum, and who would blame you if you couldn't, then just google "Hyperventilation syndrome" and try the deep belly breathing. You should also go for brisk walks and ONLY breathe through your nose. Never your mouth. Every time you breathe through your mouth you are expelling more CO2 and thus receiving less oxygen. I hope this works. It did for me.

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Old 07-08-2014, 06:24 PM   #7
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Re: please help... can't breath... What doctor next?

your thyroid can really mess someone up, your tsh is high. good luck

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