Discussions By Condition: Cardiovascular disease

Chest infection after-effects or heart related?

Posted In: Cardiovascular disease 0 Replies
  • Posted By: stevie777
  • July 3, 2007
  • 04:58 PM

Apologies for cross-postng in the respiratory forum as well -- I'm at a loss as to where this belongs... Will stick in cross-board references to responses for the benefit of other users, though.

Two months ago, after trips to the US and Eastern Europe, I started feeling strange: very spaced out, hot and as though I couldn't use my full lung capacity. My lower arms were also tingling. Things got worse over the next few days, with a fever and a dry cough developing. When one night I woke up sweating and with my heart racing I decided to see my GP. I was diagnosed with acute bronchitis and given antibiotics (amoxicillin, 5 days).

My chest tightness (front of my chest, around my heart) was relieved to some extent within hours, but in the end the course did not make me feel 100% better, so I went back. The chest infection had cleared up, I was told, but since some of the symptoms reminded the gp of tb (and I had been travelling) he arranged for a chest x-ray. This showed up clear. I still felt pretty bad, especially at night, when I would often feel lightheaded and often as though someone were pressing the air out of my chest on exhaling. I also noticed that my heart rate was slow (around 45) and that during the 2-second intervals when it felt as though the air was pressed out of my lungs, my heart didn't beat at all, as though skipping a beat. I also had hot flushes during these nights (no fever). I decided to see the gp again. The infection was apparently back and I was given another 10 days of antibiotics (klacid). Again this gave me some relief, and the 2 weeks after finishing the course I felt better and better every day. The gp gave me some syrup to loosen up the mucus (which had been green on some days, colourless on others). After a few days this seemed to work reasonably well.

I thought I was cured, but about 5 days ago, however, the spaced out feeling came back, and it's there for several hours every day. Also in the evening and at night (always when I sit/lie down; not when standing up) I have these feelings of lightheadedness, air being pressed out, and skipped heartbeats. My heartrate at night is still around 45, BP 110/60-65. There are now no hot flushes but I am getting increasingly worried (not to mention a bit frustrated that work and private life are suffering) and wonder if finally I should request a blood test or some other form of examination from my gp. If these things are all normal after-effects of a chest infection, or are a virus that I’ll simply have to sit out, then I can live with that, but I’m going on holiday in 2 weeks’ time and would prefer not to have to worry about needing medical care abroad.

I am 32 years old, not overweight, a non-smoker and do regular exercise. There is some history of heart disease in my family: my father had several bypass operations when he was 55.

Thanks a lot in advance for any advice!

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