How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Karel1 Your Own Question
Karel1, Certified Respiratory Therapist
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 565
Experience:  Have suffered with Narcolepsy a sleeping disorder over 30 years,specializes in asthma ,COPD
Type Your Health Question Here...
Karel1 is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I have a breathing problem when I exert myself. This started

Customer Question

I have a breathing problem when I exert myself. This started after my gallbladder was removed. Within the last 6 months which cleared up prior to the bladder removal.

During recovery, I exercised daily and walked 1/2 mile twice daily and started playing tennis and again only to find myself winded and breathing was labored. The lung doctor said I had a mild COPD and should not be having such a problem and sent me back to the heart doctor. He replaced by pacebacker/deffibrilater with a larger unit and additional wires. I felt the difference walking and daily during my exercises were OK, but when I started playhing tenyis afater 20 months I found again that my breathing was extremely labored and when I raised by arms to serve, it was difficult to catch my breath. No could I sprint for a ball (play doubles, etc.)

Can you suggest a way to over come my problems or must I stop playing tennis? I am 76 and again was OK until my gallbladder removal.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Dr Basu replied 3 years ago.
The views expressed by me are for educational purposes only and do not establish a doctor patient relationship.

Thanks for your question.
Are you using any inhaler to help with your breathing problem?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes, Foradil aerolizer 12cg x 2 and proventil 90mcg (cfc-F) 200doral as needed up to 4 times a day

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

are you online?

Expert:  Dr Basu replied 3 years ago.
Ok--thanks for your reply.
Tennis requires more energy than walking does.
That means you heart needs to work harder.
Now, it may be heart related --- your heart is not able to generate that much output.
if it is heart related cardiac rehabilitation exercises will help.
This will gradually increase your heart capacity.
Treadmill exercises are one such example.
Another possibility COPD related problem.
If this is COPD related.
Then use of preventil before playing tennis should help to increase your exercise capacity.
Best wishes
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

why would this suddenly happen after a gallblader removal, when the exercise regimen was the same before and after the procedure?

Expert:  Dr Basu replied 3 years ago.
Good question.
One possibility can be the nerve injury to the diaphragm.
Diaphrgam helps with the breathing and this becomes more apparent during the tennis.
Diaphragmatic nerve injury can be diagnosed by nerve conduction study.
You need to see a neurologist then.

Best wishes
Expert:  Karel1 replied 3 years ago.
It could be the copd which at times can become exacerbated, when there is trouble with the heart, the lungs take over some of the hearts functions and visa versa, when this happens, one organ thats used more will eventually get weaker if it must continue to do the organs work. I would get another pulmonary function test to test if the copd has gotten worse. It also can take time after any procedure for the body to get adjusted to the pacemaker. Unfortunately the age also makes it harder to get back into the swing of things. I also if the copd shows it got a little worse perhaps need a longer acting medication to keep the airway open such as spiriva or advair along with the foradel. Also singulair which helps with any environmental allergies such as springtime or fall which pollen can irritate ones lungs, singulari is very dafe and also can help witht the shortness of breath you might be having, I also would not do so much of the exercising, especially if it occurs when this happens.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

now we have a leaky heart valve

Expert:  Karel1 replied 3 years ago.
If the valve is not leaking much it can be controlled with medication. Unfortunately all of this happens as we get older. It could be the mitral valve which 9 out of 10 of us will have it leak, as stated, it depends how bad the leak is . If it is bad then the md may want to give you a bypass operation. But because of the copd he may just rather treat you with medications. Gallbladder removal I had it, can really take time to get back into the swing of things, just take things slow. If the shortness of breath gets very bad, you might consider getting oxygen in the home, you need not use it all day just perhaps when you sleep at night or a few minutes a day when you are doing activities. It really can help tremendously, but that is up to your cardiologist.

Related Health Questions