Symptoms of shortness of breath with cardiac pacemaker warrants investigation with echocardiography

Patient

Q: My mother has a heart condition and pacemaker. Lately she is starting to get shortness of breath. We went to her heart doctor and he gave her a nasel spray which has helped. Could the shortness of breath be more than allergies?

Doctor

A:   I think it is very unlikely that the shortness of breath is due to allergies. If she is completely dependent on the pacemaker, her shortness of breath could be due to a change in the electrical activity of the heart and reduced efficiency of the pumping ability of the heart. I would recommend that your mother attends a cardiologist and is referred for a heart scan (echocardiogram) to assess her heart function.

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