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My Pericardial Effusion And Pots Are They Related?


RichGotsPots
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I finally looked up the Pericardial Effusion symptoms (see below) and it can cause bad breathing issues. I know I have a Pericardial Effusion (from my last echo with my POTS dr.) but can it be causing my breathing issues? I wonder.. I wonder if my POTS is causing it some how or the other way around.

Has anyone else been told they have this? I also had a staph infection when they took the echo, I don't know if that affected the results. (probably from being in the hospital). I'm going to see one of the best heart and Pulmonary Hypertension specialist in the country in a bout a month, I'll see what she says...

Symptoms

By Mayo Clinic staff

Pericardial effusion symptoms may include:

  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing (dyspnea)
  • Shortness of breath when lying down (orthopnea)
  • Chest pain, usually behind the breastbone or on the left side of the chest that often feels worse when you breathe and feels better when you are sitting up, rather than lying down
  • Cough
  • Painful breathing, especially when inhaling or lying down
  • Fainting or dizziness
  • Low-grade fever
  • Rapid heart rate
  • A feeling of anxiety

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I have it. Moderate pericardial effusion was found when I was worked up for dysautonomia. I do not have symptoms from it. I've had four subsequent echos and they have remained unchanged. My doctor said it is not unusual for the general population to have this and it doesn't always cause problems. But he recommends an echo every six months for me just to make sure everything is OK.

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I have breathing issues and small pericardial effusion. PCP (internal med) and cardiologist say it is not concerning. I also was found to have Vocal Cord Dysfunction that makes it hard to sort out if my difficulty breathing and shortness of breath is stemming from exertion, vocal cord spasms/being shut when they should be opened, or from the dysautonomia. I also get pains in left chest (with myocardial events ruled out). You can get lightheaded/faint if you hyperventilate and you can hyperventilate without being aware (i.e. with feeling of anxiousness from difficulty breathing). I also have asthma. I try to focus on breathing slowly (sometimes deeply, sometimes shallow) in through nose and exhale slowly and gently through lips as if gently blowing out a candle. It is supposed to relax the vocal cords. You can also exhale using short shallow puffs and inhale the same way. Sometimes, I have to do the inhalations and exhalations in the same fashion through my mouth. When I cough, it is a dry cough. I keep water at bedside as meds and my membranes are dry. It helps with breathing/swallowing at night. I do not run low grade fever.

Low grade fever/pain on inspiration could be symptomatic of anything from pulmonary embolism to respiratory infection/inflamation. Only a physician/testing would be able to sort that out.

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I wasnt aware of this. Interesting read. Quite possible.

You know I never hyperventilate. More I feel like I gasp for air. After IV saline I felt quite breathless and was finding myself breathing quicker. So maybe the only reason im not a hyperventilator is because i have low blood volume? LOL. Sounds ridiculous I know...

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Buteyko breathing exercises is supposed to help hyperventilation. Buteyko believes hyperventilating cause asthma and other breathing problems like sleep apnea. More likely, is that hyperventilation is a symptom rather than a cause. And maybe some people have positive results from trying not to hyperventilate because it helps heal the root cause some how.

Very surprising that more volume makes your breathing worse Rama. I have to drink tons of water to get mine better. But if I'm high salt mine gets worse.. That's why I suspected Pulmonary Hypertension for me...

I wish there was a Pulmonary POTS doctor!

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