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Old 11-12-2010, 11:09 PM
 
8 posts, read 29,825 times
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I am a healthy 25 yr old, with no heart disease family history, I work out 2 hours a day, I am vegan and drink lots of water.

I started experiencing shortness of breath for the first time in my life about 10 days ago. It started out simply while being seated in front of the computer laughing and chatting with a friend.

I started gasping for air felt I was gonna die, called 911.
They checked vitals said everything was normal, told me it was probably anxiety Although there is nothing triggering it. I am under no stress and even on vacations.

It never went away since then. I have the hardest time trying to fall asleep and then the minute I wake up the torture is on. It doesnt matter what I do, I do yoga, relax, meditation, it wont go away.

Went to the ER twice. They did blood, urine, EKG. Except for a sinus arithmya, everything was normal and healthy. The last time they told me they didnt know what it was, but it was not life threatening so they prescribed xanax. I have been taking it, aside from making me sleepy... I am still going short of breath 24/7 which is a LIVING TORTURE.

I need some advice. One of the doctors suggested I could be allergic to something told me to buy benadryl and give it a shot. Do you think I should try it?

thank you in advance.
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Old 11-13-2010, 07:51 AM
 
Location: In the real world!
2,178 posts, read 8,219,530 times
Reputation: 2772
It amazes me the strides they have made in medicine but get stumped so many times at what is going on and have no answers. If standard protocol don't show anything or standard treatment don't work.. They are lost... makes me wonder what they are teaching them in medical school these days. Nobody seems to want to dig deeper and take on a new challenge.. Today it is "try this" then "try that" and they keep doing that until they accidentally hit on something that works.

I have no idea what your problem is or even what it could be. Have they tested you for asthma, allergies or anything?
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Old 11-13-2010, 09:30 AM
 
Location: Bucks, UK
523 posts, read 3,278,920 times
Reputation: 1127
are you taking the oral contraceptive pill? do you have any chest pain with this shortness of breath? are you coughing anything up? do you have a fever? what is your pulse rate? did they check your arterial blood gases when you when to the ER? did you have a chest x-ray?

apart from anxiety/panic attack, the most important things to rule out would be a chest infection, or a pulmonary embolus - both are pretty easy to diagnose with blood tests/x-ray tests.
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Old 11-13-2010, 09:38 AM
 
2,191 posts, read 4,087,914 times
Reputation: 2256
Could just be the begining of asthma for you. I know plenty of people who developed it later in life like their 20's and 30's. That would be my guess anyhow.
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Old 11-13-2010, 09:39 AM
 
Location: Southeastern North Carolina
1,606 posts, read 3,111,509 times
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I had problems with shortness of breath starting in my early 30s and continuing into my 40s. No doctor could tell me what was wrong, either. I was miserable for years with that and other symptoms.

I eventually found out that it was caused by food allergies. Specifically, it was acidic foods that caused my shortness of breath. What saved my life was a book: "Food Allergies, The Complete Guide to Understanding and Relieving Your Food Allergies" by William E. Walsh, MD. Moderator cut: can't discuss mod actions on forum
In the book, Dr. Walsh refers to the type of allergy I have as MALS food chemical allergy. MALS is an acronym for:

Monosodium Glutamate
Acidic food
Low calorie sweeteners
Sugar

I had to eliminate all of these substances from my diet, which is very difficult to do, and left me eating a very restricted diet. After a few years, I moved and my new house/environment is apparently not as taxing to my immune system so I can eat a lot of stuff I had to avoid before moving, but still have to avoid extremely acidic food and processed/restaurant food with added MSG.

Oh, and I tried Benadryl and it didn't help me at all.

Last edited by SouthernBelleInUtah; 11-13-2010 at 01:09 PM..
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Old 11-13-2010, 09:57 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
16,836 posts, read 51,286,023 times
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The sudden onset tends to rule out food allergy issues. I gather they checked your oxygenation levels. Did anyone mention doing a CAT scan with contrast? An embolism sounds like a possibility.
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Old 11-13-2010, 10:30 AM
 
Location: Canada
3,432 posts, read 3,265,550 times
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I am so sorry you are going through this. Is it possible you have asthma. It could be panic attacks. You should go see an allergist as well and get skin testing done. The allergist could also diagnose the asthma.
You mentioned you are a vegan. Maybe you are anemic?
Good luck and take care
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Old 11-13-2010, 11:53 AM
 
Location: Gettysburg, PA
1,562 posts, read 1,509,764 times
Reputation: 2750
Quote:
Originally Posted by Laura707 View Post
It amazes me the strides they have made in medicine but get stumped so many times at what is going on and have no answers. If standard protocol don't show anything or standard treatment don't work.. They are lost... makes me wonder what they are teaching them in medical school these days.
That's because we've just cracked the surface of understanding such a complex thing as human physiology. There are almost certainly at least hundreds of receptors that have not yet been discovered, which is likely why medications have such variable effects on different patients.

Standard protocol is just that: standard--the definition of the "typical" patient; which is almost nonexistant given the variety existing in humans, making almost no one "typical". It sometimes amazes me that so many people do get their conditions treated, but then we have come long ways from when leeches were used as standard treatments.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laura707 View Post
Nobody seems to want to dig deeper and take on a new challenge.. Today it is "try this" then "try that" and they keep doing that until they accidentally hit on something that works.
Unfortunately, that is how it happens a lot. I would imagine that not many doctors want to dig deeper and take on new challenges because it would be like stepping out of what they've learned in school and basically running experiments; it's too bad that you don't see a lot of them doing that, but they do have their license to worry about.


As to the op, I would go along with the asthma idea--that's not one of the things they've ruled out is it? I hope you'll be able to figure out what's going on; to be that healthy and then have something like this happen isn't right.
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Old 11-13-2010, 12:34 PM
 
Location: St. Louis
9,457 posts, read 16,404,322 times
Reputation: 13154
Quote:
Originally Posted by chikaex0tica View Post
I need some advice. One of the doctors suggested I could be allergic to something told me to buy benadryl and give it a shot. Do you think I should try it?

thank you in advance.
No, I think they were out of ideas so they told you to take a fairly harmless pill, hoping it would work as a placebo for you. I think you should continue to follow up on this and find another doc--someone who likes to follow up on weird stuff and will take the trouble to find out what it is. I have asthma, and always have had, and this doesn't sound like it. Just in case it is, you can try primatene mist--you'll have to ask for it at the drugstore b/c they keep it behind the counter these days, but if it helps, it could be asthma.

I went back and read your post again and saw that you are vegan. I'll not try to talk you out of that, though I believe that vegan is a bit stringent, but are you absolutely clear that you're getting all your nutrients? B-12 is esp a problem for vegans, and veganism is no guarantee against things like heart disease--I have an aunt who is vegan and her cholesterol level is over 500 w/o meds. It's possible that you're missing something really major in your diet and are just now showing symptoms. Please let us all know how it turns out for you--I hope it's just panic attacks and there is a natural remedy for that too--it's called Rescue Remedy.
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Old 11-13-2010, 01:11 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
19,631 posts, read 53,468,042 times
Reputation: 18533
You should see a pulmnologist (one who specializes in the lungs).
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