Safety First A Checklist Of Warning Signs Of More Serious Breathing Problems
Its nice that some people may be able to find an easy solution to their shortness of breath, or at least be reassured that its mostly harmless. Unfortunately, more ominous causes of dyspnea are also common, so please always alert your doctor about any difficult breathing. If your doctor cannot find any explanation, and you have none of these red flags, then you can pursue the possibility of muscle knots and weak breathing muscles. Safety first! And second.
- Have you developed other unusual and/or persistent symptoms?
- Do you have a chronic wheeze or cough?
- Are you tired all the time? Do you look pale? These two together are a red flag.
- Do you have a dry, painful cough and your shortness of breath gets worse when you exercise?
- Are your feet and ankles swollen, and is it harder to breathe when you lie down flat?
- Have you worked in or around asbestos, wood dust, industrial fumes or in a coal mine? If so, you probably already understand why youre having trouble!
Any of these factors could be associated with a slow, sneaky onset of a serious condition.
Demographics Of Cohort 1
Gender and ages were not significantly different between the CFS and HC groups within each cohort after Bonferroni corrections . Cohort 1 was younger than Cohort 2. Shortness of breath was present in 56% of CFS and 12% of HC in Cohort 1. The queries accounted for 0.63 of the expected variance in the MRC Score. CFS had significantly higher MRC Scores than HC . The frequency distribution for MRC Scores showed that over 80% of HC had scores of zero. The 95th percentile was 2 on the 5 point scale. MRC Scores were zero for 35% of CFS subjects, then between 10% and 20% for each score of 1 and higher. The Cohort 1 receiver operator curve indicated high specificities but low sensitivities for all scores. Optimum sensitivity and specificity were found with a MRC Score of 1 . When the 95th percentile for the HC group was used, a score of 2 gave sensitivity of 54% and specificity of 97%. Positive MRC Scores were defined as 2 and greater.
Healthwhy Early Coronavirus Cases May Have Been Missed
Since that report, other symptoms related to COVID-19 have emerged.
Many patients who’ve either tested positive for the coronavirus, or have been told by their physicians to assume they have it, also develop a headache and sore throat. Others become sick to their stomach with nausea or diarrhea.
Some patients say they have no interest in eating. Many report they’re losing their senses of taste and smell, the British Rhinological Society said recently.
Just this week, a small study published in JAMA Ophthalmology added another potential COVID-19 warning sign: pink eye, also known as conjunctivitis. A third of the 38 patients in the report had the inflammatory eye condition.
But it’s also becoming more clear that some infected people spreading the virus don’t have any symptoms at all.
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Causes Of Glandular Fever
Glandular fever is caused by the Epstein-Barr virus . This virus is found in the saliva of infected people and can be spread through:
- kissing glandular fever is often called the kissing disease
- exposure to coughs and sneezes
- sharing eating and drinking utensils, such as cups, glasses and unwashed cutlery
If you have EBV, its a good idea to take steps to avoid infecting others while you are ill, such as not kissing other people.
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Shortness Of Breath With Nonproductive Cough And Fatigue
Vol. 12 Issue 3 Page 21Shortness of Breath With Nonproductive Cough and Fatigue
A 24-year-old African-American woman presented to the fast-track emergency department three times with subjective complaints of shortness of breath. She was evaluated by three different nurse practitioners. She reported taking no routine medications.
On her initial visit, her chief complaint was shortness of breath and a nonproductive cough for 1 day. Her physical examination was unremarkable. Her lungs were clear, pulse rate 80, respiratory rate 16, temperature 98 degrees and blood pressure 146/79 mmHg her oxygen saturation was 100%. She reported no previous medical problems. She was diagnosed with an upper-respiratory infection, and the NP prescribed over-the-counter cold medicines.
Two weeks later, she reported continued subjective complaints of shortness of breath and nonproductive cough, as well as new onset dyspnea on exertion. Her physical examination was again unremarkable. Her lungs were clear, pulse rate 72, respiratory rate 16, temperature 98.7 degrees and blood pressure 132/76 mmHg her oxygen saturation was 98%. The NP diagnosed bronchitis and prescribed Tessalon Perles for cough, vitamin C 500 mg twice a day and increased fluid intake.
Remember the saying: If you hear hoof beats, do you think of horses or zebras? Sometimes its a zebra.
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When To Phone A Doctor
You should phone your GP immediately if you have sudden unexpected shortness of breath, as there may be a problem with your airways or heart.
Your GP will assess you over the phone, and may either visit you at home or admit you to hospital. If your shortness of breath is mild or the result of anxiety, you may be asked to come to the surgery rather than a home visit.
If you’ve struggled with your breathing for a while, don’t ignore it. See your GP as it’s likely you have a long-term condition, such as obesity, asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease , which needs to be managed properly.
Your doctor may ask you some questions, such as:
- Did the breathlessness come on suddenly or gradually?
- Did anything trigger it, such as exercise?
- How bad is it? Does it only happen when you’ve been active, or when you’re not doing anything?
- Is there any pain when you breathe?
- Do you have a cough?
- Do certain positions make it worse for example, are you unable to lie down?
Feeling like you can’t get enough air can be terrifying, but doctors are well trained in managing this. You may be given extra oxygen to breathe if this is needed.
Theres Definitely Hope For Some Breathing Troubles
If youre short of breath for any of those reasons, easy relief is possible. Its safe, cheap, and almost fun to experiment with self-massage for trigger points. Results are hardly guaranteed, but its a sensible thing to try.
Anxiety is the toughest problem to beat, but anyone can benefit from trying.
These three issues may all get tangled up, each one complicating the others, but progress with one is also likely to help the others. Some simple and interesting ideas for self-treatment are suggested in this short article, plus links to much more information for those who want to delve.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Copd
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease is basically “airway constipation,” says Tan. This is because your airways may become clogged with mucus, or the airway walls may be inflamed. Additionally, in healthy lungs, air sacs called alveoli have elasticity to them. These air sacs are crucial for bringing oxygen into the body. Inhaling inflates the air sacs, and exhaling deflates them. However, if you have COPD, these air sacs and your airways might be less elastic, which can negatively affect your airflow.
All of these factors make it difficult for COPD patients to fully exhale air out their lungs.
“Not being able to fully exhale all the air in the lungs results in the trapping of air in their lungs, and overtime this trapping of air can result in patients having to work extra hard to fill their already filled lungs with fresh air,” says Tan.
This obstructed airflow can lead to various symptoms such as:
- Shortness of breath
- General fatigue
- Extra production of mucus and phlegm in the lungs and airways, which can contribute to chronic coughing
COPD is progressive, which means the disease and its symptoms get worse over time.
Tan says patients should get help immediately if they have the following symptoms:
- Severe sudden shortness of breath
- Chest pain
- Coughing up more than a teaspoon of blood
Chest Pain Under Strain Get It Checked Out
In older white males, we know chest pain may be a sign of heart attack. But we havent gotten that same sort of education with women, Baechler says. Women fear breast cancer more than heart disease, but they are more likely to have heart disease. In fact, heart disease is the No.1 killer of women in America today, causing more deaths than all types of cancer combined.
If you lift something and have chest pain that youve never had before, get it checked out. You should also see your doctor about any new chest pain when you walk upstairs or exert yourself in some way. This is particularly important if the pain goes away after a short period of rest. Women are more likely than men to have atypical symptoms of a heart attack: shortness of breath, dizziness, nausea and vomiting, extreme fatigue, a cold sweat, or pain in the arms, back, neck, or stomach, Baechler says. Get these, and any of the more traditional symptoms, checked out.
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Sleep Disorders And Fatigue
Symptoms: Chronic fatigue, feeling exhausted upon awakening, snoring
Sleep disorders are a group of conditions that disrupt or prevent restful, restorative sleep. That can take a toll on your health and quality of life, so its important to look out for signs and symptoms.
Sleep apnea is one of the most common sleep disorders. If you or your partner notices loud snoring and you wake up tired and stay that way, you could have sleep apnea. More than one-third of adults in the U.S. snore at least a few nights a week. But if the snoring stops your breathing for seconds at a time, it could be sleep apnea. Learn more about the best sleep positions and see if sleeping on your stomach is bad or not.
Obstructive sleep apnea causes low blood oxygen levels. That’s because blockages prevent air from getting to the lungs. The low oxygen levels also affect how well your heart and brain work. Sometimes, the only clue that you might have sleep apnea is chronic fatigue.
Your doctor may prescribe a medical device called CPAP that helps keep your airways open while you sleep. In severe cases of sleep apnea, surgery may help. The surgeon will remove tissues that are blocking the airways. If left untreated, sleep apnea can increase your risk of a stroke or heart attack.
But sleep apnea is just one of many sleep disorders that cause fatigue. Other common types include:
Chronic Cough And Shortness Of Breath
Chronic cough and shortness of breath can be experienced by a person due to a number of reasons. This article provides some information on the same.
Chronic cough and shortness of breath can be experienced by a person due to a number of reasons. This article provides some information on the same.
Chronic or persistent cough along with a sudden shortness of breath are symptoms that could be associated with various causes ranging from minor to major. It should not be ignored as in some cases, it could be a manifestation of any serious lung or air tract problem. One needs to be aware of the conditions that can cause the same. Here are some of them:
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How Can I Treat A Dry Cough And Tight Chest
Most dry coughs clear up when you treat the underlying cause. Over-the-counter cough medicines arent usually that helpful. And children younger than 4 years of age shouldnt take any cough medicine because of the risk for serious side effects.
These at-home remedies can help:
- Drink plenty of liquids to stay hydrated. Try hot tea or water with honey and lemon to soothe irritated airways.
- Suck on cough drops or hard candies. Sucking on a hard lozenge promotes saliva production that soothes the throat. But dont give cough drops or hard candies to children under 4. They can choke.
- Take a spoonful of honey. Studies show that honey stops coughs as well as most OTC cough medicines. Your healthcare provider can recommend the right amount of honey based on the ill persons age. Never give honey to a child under 1 year of age. In babies, honey can cause botulism.
- Use a humidifier. A cool-mist humidifier puts moisture into the air. This extra moisture soothes nasal passages and sore throats and eases dry coughs. You can also get more moisture by taking a steamy shower or hot bath.
What Treatment Can Improve Shortness Of Breath Due To Atrial Fibrillation
If you are consistently in atrial fibrillation and it is causing shortness of breath, what are the ways in which it can be managed? Probably the most straightforward treatment is to get out of atrial fibrillation. There are many ways to get out of atrial fibrillation, either with medications, or with procedures, such as a cardioversion, which is an electrical shock to your heart to get out of atrial fibrillation. Another procedure option is a catheter ablation procedure, where your doctor goes through your groin to try to make strategic burn or freeze marks in your atria to try and get a person out of atrial fibrillation.
Unfortunately, not everybody is a candidate to have these types of procedures done. Not everybody is able to get out of atrial fibrillation and in some people who attempt these types of procedures they end up back in atrial fibrillation. So what about people who dont really have an option to get out of atrial fibrillation, are there ways to help control their shortness of breath?
The first option would be to control the heart rate with a rate controlling medication such as a beta-blocker. The second option would be to control the pressures inside of the heart and that usually involves a diuretic medication, for example, fluid medications such as Lasix or other types of diuretics which could certainly help with the shortness of breath and elevated pressures.
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Woman 78 With Dyspnea Dry Cough And Fatigue
Natalie Orbach, PA-C
Natalie Orbach works in pulmonary medicine at Union Memorial Hospital in Baltimore and at a private primary care office in Lutherville, Maryland.
A 78-year-old woman presented to the emergency department complaining of shortness of breath, a dry nonproductive cough, fatigue, hypoxia, and general malaise lasting for several months and worsening over a two-week period. She denied having fever, chills, hemoptysis, weight loss, headache, rashes, or joint pain. She reported sweats, decrease in appetite, wheezing, cough without sputum production, and slight swelling of the legs. The patient complained of chest pain upon admission, but it resolved quickly.
The patient, a retired widow with five grown children, denied recent surgery or exposure to sick people, had not travelled, and reported no changes in her home environment. She claimed to have no pets but admitted to currently smoking about four cigarettes a day she had previously smoked, on average, three packs of cigarettes per day for 60 years. She denied using alcohol or drugs, including intravenous agents.
The patients medical history was significant for paroxysmal atrial fibrillation. She had also been diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease , transient ischemic attack, patent foramen ovale, hyperlipidemia, seizure disorder, and hypothyroidism. She had no known HIV risk factors and had had no exposure to asbestos or tuberculosis.
Is Fatigue A Sign Of Asthma
Response from Leon C. Lebowitz, BA, RRT:
Asthma is characterized by hypersensitivity of the airways. We tend to describe the main symptoms of asthma as coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, and chest tightness, which may include pain or pressure.3
Waking up at night and concomitant fatigue are characteristics of poorly controlled asthma. Inadequate rest and sleep during the night subsequently impacts normal functioning during the day. Again, this may manifest itself as a feeling of being tired and/or feeling constantly exhausted.3
Persistent bouts of coughing combined with increased use of one’s accessory muscles during asthma exacerbations often results in muscle fatigue and sometimes, muscle pain. The constant wheezing that can accompany exacerbations also contributes towards a feeling of being weakened, tired, and fatigued.2
The best approach to treating the fatigue that is associated with one’s asthma is to keep it under control. Signs that asthma may be out of control include more frequent use of one’s rescue inhaler, increased shortness of breath, self-limiting physical activities because of one’s asthma condition, and any other signs that are specific for the individual.2
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Warning Signs Of Heart Failure
By themselves, any one sign of heart failure may not be cause for alarm. But if you have more than one of these symptoms, even if you haven’t been diagnosed with any heart problems, report them to a healthcare professional and ask for an evaluation of your heart. Congestive heart failure is a type of heart failure which requires seeking timely medical attention, although sometimes the two terms are used interchangeably.
If you have been diagnosed with heart failure, it’s important for you to manage and keep track of symptoms and report any sudden changes to your healthcare team.
This table lists the most common signs and symptoms, explains why they occur and describes how to recognize them.