Causes of Shortness of breadth in a youth

Patient

Q: When I walk up 2 to 3 stairs of steps, I run out of breath. My mom said it is because I am out of shape. But I don't know if that is why. I am not fat. Is it a health problem that is serious? Why does it happen? Is it normal for it to happen? Thanks.

Doctor

A:   There are various causes of shortness of breadth like Respiratory ( lung ) as well as Cardiac problems and Anemia ( low hemoglobin) . Many a times being out of shape and having a lack of exercise also leads to these symptoms. I would advice you to slowly increase your excercising and this will help decrease the symptoms. However there could also be underlying organic problems like a valve disorder in your heart or a old pneumonia patch in your lungs or decreased oxygen carrying capacity by your red blood cells which occurs when we have low Hemoglobin like in Anemia  which may be leading to these symptoms. If it get worse or doesnt improve even on increasing your excercising capacity then I would advice yout to see your GP for a thorough physical examination and a CBC and Chest Xray.

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