Breathing problem mostly at night


Q: I am having breathing problem since almost 10 years. It has been started after I became unconscious in a hill in Manali. Every day I am having this breathing problem, especially at night. Sometimes it is less and sometimes it is more. Once in a week or two it becomes very serious and my breathing almost stops sometimes. Can you please tell me what could be the reason for this kind of breathing problem and which kind of doctor should I visit to get a treatment ?.

Symptoms:  Breathing problem

A:   Hello
Welcome to Ask The Doctor.

Thanks for trusting us for your health issues.
There are two possibilities:
1. Bronchial Asthma.
2. Cardiac issues.
Breathlessness in night which awakens you from sleep is usually a sign of Heart Failure and is called as Paroxysmal Nocturnal Dyspnea (PND).
This PND required evaluation.

I would advise in such scenario:
1. Hemogram with ESR
2. ECG
3. Chest Xray
4. Pulmonary Function Test
If cardiac issues are found you would be treated accordingly, else you will be treated for asthma.
Your doctor would evaluate you clinically. If you don't have severe chest congestion, he would treat you with anti-allergic drugs like Levocetrizine and Montelukast. He may add deriphylline or doxophylline for the chest spasms.
If your chest congestion is very severe and there are wheezes and rhonchi's, then inhalers containing bronchi dilators like Salbutamol would be required.
You might also require short dose of Steriod inhaler like Budenoside.
Share my opinion with your doctor before acting upon it.

I hope it helps.
Stay Healthy

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