Thank you for allowing me to answer your interesting question. I
presume you have read our disclaimer, which indicates that it is not
our policy to provide medical advice in this forum, and that such
advice is best left to a medical professional. Therefore I must assume
that what you are asking is a matter of opinion based on research
information. Having said that let me make some suggestions that you
might consider bringing up when a physician examines you:
First, it is possible that you have an allergy ? not to strenuous
exercise (obviously), but to something in your environment (dust,
pollen, food, etc) that is exacerbated by exerting yourself. Allergies
can be discovered through a relatively simple process of elimination.
A physician will expose you to minute amounts of certain stimuli and
check for reaction. If no reaction occurs that particular exposure is
eliminated as a potential allergen. If a reaction does occur, a
physician may prescribe an antigen that you can take to prevent you
from having the undesirable symptoms.
Secondly, your dyspnea (the medical term for shortness of breath) can
also be the result of spasms of the diaphragm, the large frontal
abdominal muscle involved in breathing Introduction. When the
diaphragm muscle contracts, it pulls the bottom of the lungs downward,
causing them to fill, while the ribs flare outward to the sides. If
you are experiencing spasms you may have a painful sensation or
perhaps a sensation of excessive gas that can interfere with your
breathing capacity. A spasm of the diaphragm can also cause you to
retain excessive carbon monoxide that deprives the blood of its
ability to carry oxygen. This might be relieved somewhat by expressing
gas (burping) which could explain your unorthodox remedy.
There are tests that can measure the strength of your diaphragm:
?There are two tests that can be done to determine the function of
your diaphragm muscles. The first indirect measurement is a mean
inspiratory force maneuver. This is done by inspiring against
resistance that is measured by a manometer. A measurement less than
-60 cm H2O is abnormal and may indicate a weak diaphragm. The other
test is a direct measurement done with fluoroscopy called a SNIFF
test. In a sniff test the patient "sniffs" while being observed under
a fluoroscope. This test is a very accurate way to observe diaphragm
MUSCULAR DYSTROPHY ASSOCIATION
Thirdly, you may also have an undiagnosed diaphragmatic hernia. A
diaphragmatic hernia is an abnormal opening in the diaphragm that
allows part of the abdominal organs to migrate into the chest cavity.
This can also be exacerbated by exertion and when it happens a
persons? lung capacity is decreased because the organs pushing at the
opening interfere with the proper filling of the lung(s). While this
condition is most often a congenital anomaly it can also be caused by
other factors later in life, usually in the form of an injury to the
diaphragm tissue whether you realize you have been injured or not (i.
e. injuries are not always the result of trauma, rather some injuries
just simply ?happen?).
SPONTANEOUS DIAPHRAGMATIC HERNIA
Finally (though there may in fact be many more causes that a qualified
physician can probably educate you more about) you may be experiencing
other problems associated with your lungs:
-- Spasms of the bronchial tubes leading to your lungs ? similar to
asthma but caused by something else.
-- Eventration of the diaphragm - an abnormal elevation of the
diaphragm at a site of weakness. Broadly defined as an abnormally high
position of part or all of the diaphragm.
-- Undiagnosed tumors of the large intestine, spleen or liver.
-- A hiatal hernia - when the stomach protrudes into the chest cavity
(this might also explain the relief you notice by burping)
-- Atelectasis - a collapse of part or all of a lung by blockage of
the air passages
-- Excessive levels of carbon dioxide (inability to expel CO2 due to a
variety of reasons)
I am not a physician but as you can see by my research I tend to
believe that if you are in otherwise good health that you ?might? be
experiencing problems related to your diaphragm muscle rather than
your lungs. I highly recommend that consult a doctor armed with this
information and have your condition checked.
I hope you find that my answer exceeds your expectations. If you have
any questions about my research please post a clarification request
prior to rating the answer. Otherwise I welcome your rating and your
final comments and I look forward to working with you again in the
near future. Thank you for bringing your question to us.
Tutuzdad-ga ? Google Answers Researcher
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SHORTNESS OF BREATH