Is Pots More Common In Certain People
There are no established risk factors for POTS. However, it is known to run in families, so it could have a genetic component. Researchers have also established a link between POTS and Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome . So if you have one of these conditions, you might also have the other.
A big group of those diagnosed with POTS is young women and teens. However, this doesnt mean they are more likely to develop this condition.
Sticking To Good Sleeping Habits
Having COPD may interfere with getting enough rest. Nighttime coughing or shortness of breath can make falling and staying asleep difficult. Practicing good sleeping habits can help a person with COPD get a restful nights sleep.
Good sleeping habits include:
- Antoniu, S. A., & Ungureanu, D. . Measuring fatigue as a symptom in COPD: From descriptors and questionnaires to the importance of the problem . Chronic Respiratory Disease, 12, 17988
Being Unfit Or Having An Unhealthy Weight
When we are unfit, our muscles get weaker. This includes the muscles we use to breathe. Weaker muscles need more oxygen to work, so the weaker our muscles, the more breathless we feel. Its really important to keep active so you can manage your breathlessness better.
Being an unhealthy weight can also contribute to make us feel breathless.
- If youre underweight, your breathing muscles will be weaker.
- If youre overweight, it takes more effort to breathe and move around. Having more weight around the chest and stomach restricts how much your lungs can move. If you have a body mass index of 25 or more, youre more likely to get breathless compared to people with a healthy weight.
People who are severely overweight can develop obesity hypoventilation syndrome. This is when poor breathing leads to lower oxygen levels and higher carbon dioxide levels in their blood.
Maintaining a healthy weight may help you to manage your breathlessness better and be more active. Read more about eating well for healthier lungs.
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What Are Common Causes Of Shortness Of Breath And Fatigue
Shortness of breath and fatigue are symptoms that can be experienced with many physical conditions and disorders, including endocrine disorders, heart and blood vessel disorders, lung diseases and anemia, or as side effects from medications. These two symptoms are most commonly associated with weight gain, limited athletic ability, depression and anxiety. A medical professional might look for evidence pointing to one of these causes before testing for less common conditions.
The phrase “shortness of breath” can mean different things to different people. For some people, it might mean that they feel unable to breathe as deeply as they normally would because their lungs wont expand as much as usual or feel congested. For others, they mean that even though her lungs feel clear and they can take full breaths, they feel the need to breathe much faster or more deeply or both than normal. These two different definitions can result from different causes, and misunderstandings between a medical professional and patient can lead to a misdiagnosis.
Iii: Anxietyhead Games And Shortness Of Breath
Maybe you feel so stressed that its obvious that the stress is squeezing the breath out of you or maybe its not. If youre not sure, its time to ask yourself some hard questions: could that be me? Could I be choking myself? Almost literally? Dont underestimate this possibility.
Anxiety excessive worry, either too much, or too long, or both13 is a surprisingly potent and amazingly common cause of many odd symptoms. Shortness of breath and chest pain are among the most frequently reported.
Although its common, anxiety is badly neglected as an explanation for many problems. Even though its almost the same thing as stress, many people dont recognize that they are anxious, or they deny it or minimize it. And many people just dont know that shortness of breath can be caused by anxiety! It really can.
Theres no clear explanation for how anxiety causes shortness of breath, chest pain, or any other strange symptom: its just one of those things. And while anxiety can cause shortness of breath as a direct and immediate symptom, it can also probably cause trouble indirectly by chronically eating away at us in other ways, like creating the dysfunctional breathing pattern discussed above.
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Common Causes Of Fatigue
If you are feeling constantly tired, the first thing you should do is see your personal physician for a checkup. Your doctor can take a careful history, perform a physical exam, and do any needed testing to determine the cause of your fatigue.
A few of the possible causes of fatigue include the following:
What Exams Procedures And Tests Diagnose The Cause Of Fatigue
For the evaluation of fatigue, the health care practitioner will take a complete history of the patient’s fatigue, along with questions in regard to associated symptoms. The health care practitioner may inquire about the following activities and symptoms to determine the probable cause of the fatigue:
Quality of Life
Does the level of fatigue remain constant throughout the day? Does the fatigue get worse as the day goes on, or does the fatigue begin at the start of the day? Is there a pattern to the fatigue ? Does the fatigue occur at regular cycles? How is the person’s emotional state? Does the person feel unhappiness or disappointment in life? Sleep pattern determination. How much sleep is the person getting? During what hours does the person sleep? Does the person awake rested or fatigued? How many times does the person awake during sleep? Are they able to fall back asleep? Does the person get regular exercise? Any exercise? Has the person had any new stressors in their life? Change in relationships, jobs, school, or living arrangements? What is the person’s diet? Is there a high intake of coffee, sugar, or excessive amounts of food?
The definitive diagnosis depends on discovering the underlying cause of the fatigue this is determined by evaluating the history, the physical exam and the appropriate test results.
Fatigue And Shortness Of Breath Are Not Signs Of Aging
Have you noticed your energy level is lower and you are more short of breath even when performing the normal activities in your daily life? Dont ignore these feelings, or chalk them up to getting old. This is not a normal part of the aging process. It is your body telling you that it is struggling, maybe even with something as serious as a heart attack.
Shortness of breath and fatigue are frequently experienced by patients prior to having a heart attack. But you may not be aware just how far in advance these symptoms start to show. Its not necessarily a matter of minutes or hours. Many people who survive a heart attack start feeling as if something is not right several weeks, or even months, prior to the episode.
If the heart cannot supply itself with enough blood because of narrowed or blocked arteries, all of your body organs will suffer. These symptoms may progress at such a slow rate that they go unrecognized over time. Ive had many patients tell me they had been less active in the past month or two because of fatigue and shortness of breath, but they just didnt think about it in relation to heart disease until after they had a heart attack.
Phaedra McDonough is a Nurse Practitioner with The Center for Cardiovascular Health at Brattleboro Memorial Hospital. She can be reached at 802-275-3699.
How Is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Diagnosed
Right now, theres no test to tell if someone has chronic fatigue syndrome. Doctors ask a lot of questions . They also will do a thorough physical exam.
Doctors also usually order blood, urine , or other tests to check for conditions that cause similar symptoms. They may send a person to see other specialists to help with the diagnosis.
A doctor may suggest meeting with a psychologist or a therapist who can see whether mental health disorders might contribute to or mask CFS.
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What Medical Conditions Cause Fatigue
Hundreds of conditions and disorders lead to fatigue. Some of the most common causes of fatigue include:
- Disease and infection: Cancer, kidney disease and multiple sclerosis are just a few diseases that cause fatigue. Fatigue can also be a sign of infections such as mononucleosis, HIV and flu.
- Mental health conditions: Fatigue from depression or anxiety may make it difficult or impossible to perform daily activities.
- Autoimmune disorders: Fatigue is a symptom of many autoimmune diseases, including diabetes, lupus and rheumatoid arthritis.
- Hormonal imbalances: Problems with your endocrine system can lead to exhaustion. Hypothyroidism is a common cause of fatigue.
- Chronic conditions:Chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia cause severe, long-lasting fatigue.
- Heart and lung problems: Fatigue is a common symptom of cardiovascular conditions such as heart disease, postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome , chronic obstructive pulmonary disease , emphysema and congestive heart failure.
- Deficiencies:Anemia and other vitamin deficiencies are often responsible for fatigue. Dehydration can cause fatigue because the body needs plenty of fluids to function.
- Weight problems and eating disorders:Anorexia, bulimia, obesity or being underweight can lead to fatigue and a range of other symptoms.
Heart Attacks In Women
Although hard-to-read heart attacks happen to both men and women, they are more common in women. One reason for this is that men’s symptoms initially set the standard for recognizing heart trouble. Now a growing body of research shows that women can experience heart attacks differently than men.
Understanding sex differences in heart disease is important. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for women. Although it mostly affects older women, it isn’t rare in younger women. One in 10 of all women who die from heart disease or a stroke are under age 65, and this age group accounts for one-third of heart- or stroke-related hospitalizations. Even so, younger women and their doctors don’t necessarily suspect a heart attack even when all the signs are there.
In a survey of more than 500 women who survived heart attacks, 95% of them said they noticed that something wasn’t right in the month or so before their heart attacks. Two most common early warning signs were fatigue and disturbed sleep. Some women, for example, said they were so tired they couldn’t make a bed without resting.
Chest pain, a common early warning sign of heart trouble for men, was further down the list for these women. Those who did have it tended to describe it as pressure, aching, or tightness in the chest, not pain.
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Unexpected Irregular Vaginal Bleeding
Irregular bleeding, especially if its accompanied by pain during sex, could signal a serious condition like cervical cancer or uterine cancer. If your menstrual period becomes unusually heavy or irregular, occurs more often than every three weeks, or you have spotting between periods, get these symptoms checked out.
Discuss any post-menopausal spotting with your doctor. Even a little bit of bleeding after menopause is abnormal, according to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Some of the common causes are polyps and either atrophy or thickening of the endometrium the lining of your uterus.
Warning Signs Of A Heart Attack
Not all heart attacks are alike
Did you know that you can have a heart attack without feeling any chest pain? Heart failure and heart disease dont show the same signs for everyone, especially women.
The heart is a muscle that contracts to pump blood throughout the body. A heart attack occurs when the heart muscle doesnt get enough blood. Blood carries oxygen and nutrients to the heart muscle. When there isnt enough blood flowing to your heart muscle, the affected part can get damaged or die. This is dangerous and sometimes deadly.
Heart attacks happen suddenly, but they normally result from long-standing heart disease. Typically, a waxy plaque builds up on the walls inside your blood vessels that feed the heart muscle. Sometimes a chunk of the plaque, called a blood clot, breaks off and prevents blood from passing through the vessel to your heart muscle, resulting in a heart attack.
Less commonly, something like stress, physical exertion, or cold weather causes the blood vessel to contract or spasm, which decreases the amount of blood that can get to your heart muscle.
There are many risk factors that contribute to having a heart attack, including:
A heart attack is a medical emergency. Its really important to listen to what your body is telling you if you think you might be having one. Its better to seek emergency medical treatment and be wrong than to not get help when youre having a heart attack.
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Shortness Of Breath And Fatigue Are Side Effects Associated With
Potassium-sparing Diuretics: Diuretics increase urination to relieve fluid retention. They are used to treat many conditions including heart conditions and premenstrual syndrome . Potassium-sparing diuretics, such as Amiloride, Spironolactone, and Triamterene, help the body retain potassium while expelling fluid, and can have side effects that include shortness of breath, skin rashes, and itching.
Indera: Indera is a beta blocker used to treat tremors, high blood pressure, chest pain, heart rhythm disorders, migraines and to prevent heart attack. Side effects can include shortness of breath, fatigue, depression, impotence, memory loss, and slow heart rate.
Lopressor: Lopressor is another beta blocker. It is used to treat chest pain and high blood pressure and to prevent high blood pressure. Metoprolol can have side effects that include fatigue, shortness of breath, impotence, inability to achieve orgasm, fainting, depression, swelling of the ankles and feet, and cold hands and feet.
Digoxin: Digoxin is widely used in the treatment of various heart conditions, namely atrial fibrillation, atrial flutter and sometimes heart failure. It decreases the conduction of electrical impulses through the AV node and increases the force of contraction of the heart. However, Digoxin is very dose-sensitive, as was demonstrated by the many victims in pending digoxin lawsuits over the recalled brand Digitek.
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B12 Deficiency Or Insufficiency
Getting enough vitamin B12 is crucial for brain health, your immune system, and your metabolism. As we age, though, our ability to absorb B12 declines. Fatigue is one of the first signs of B12 deficiency,Lisa Cimperman, RD, told Prevention in a previous interview about B12 deficiency symptoms. Certain diabetes and heartburn medications and digestive disorders like IBS and Crohn’s hinder your body’s ability to absorb B12. And if you follow a plant-based diet, you also have an increased risk, since B12 occurs naturally only in meat, eggs, shellfish, and dairy.
The symptoms: In addition to fatigue, you may be low on B12 if you’re experiencing bouts of tingling in hands and feet, memory lapses, dizziness, anxiety, and vision problems.
The tests: If your doctor expects you’re low on B12, you’ll undergo a simple blood test.
The treatments:Depending on your blood test results, your doctor may suggest working more dietary sources of B12 into your eating plan or taking a vitamin B12 supplement.
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Sudden Vision Changes May Be Signs Of A Stroke
As you age, its normal for your vision to progressively worsen. But dont ever ignore visual changes that affect only one eye, the sudden onset of double vision, or the inability to see the center of what youre looking at.
Vision changes that occur suddenly can be signs of a stroke. Theyre particularly alarming if they come with other warning symptoms of stroke, such as numbness on one side of the body, or difficulty speaking or finding the right words. More subtle variations on these symptoms could indicate a transient ischemic attack, commonly called a mini-stroke. Getting them checked out could prevent a larger stroke later, Baechler says.
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When To Get Medical Care
Below are some of the warning signs to watch out for that may indicate a progression to ARDS or other serious respiratory conditions:
- rapid, labored breathing
- a rapid or weak pulse
- cold hands or feet
Get immediate medical attention if you have these or other serious symptoms. If possible, call your doctor or hospital in advance so they can give you instructions on what to do.
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When To See Your Doctor
If your shortness of breath is accompanied by fever, chest pain, tightness in the throat, and wheezing, then you could be experiencing angina or a heart attack. These combinations of symptoms require immediate attention.
In general, if you are experiencing shortness of breath for no obvious reason like exercise, or it is on-going and frequent, speak with your doctor right away. Uncovering and treating the underlying cause will be the only way to correct the shortness of breath.
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