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Chronic Hyperventilation Syndrome

Posted In: Medical Stories 15 Replies
  • Posted By: stacee
  • January 13, 2007
  • 06:37 PM

My daughter was running and suffered some kind of attack which caused her to be short of breath. It ended with her hyperventilating. We took her to the ER, and they found nothing wrong with her lungs or heart. However, for the next 8 weeks, she continued to take these painful, gasping breaths. She also began suffering from severe joint aches. After 4 more ER visits, countless blood tests, 2 CT scans, 3 x-rays, and appointments with a pulmonologist, rheumatologist, and internist, who tested for lupus, I took her back to the pulmonologist because her main symptom was this constant gasping for breath. He consulted with another physician who immediately said she had sighing syndrome. Our doctor had never heard of it, but prescribed Zoloft because it apparently is caused by anxiety. After Googling "sighing syndrome", I hit several websites covering "Chronic Hyperventilation Syndrome" or HVS, which fit my daughter's symptoms to a tee. The problem is, because of the constant struggle to take breaths, the patient is taking in oxygen but releasing too much carbon dioxide, which causes all kinds of other symptoms. The main treatment is not drugs but teaching the patient to learn to breathe normally again because they are breathing thoracically instead of diaghramatically. All the information I read indicated that many people suffer from this for months and years before it is diagnosed, because so many doctors don't know about it. So I'm just writing about our experience and suggesting that, if you find yourself sighing, yawning, and feeling like you are not getting a deep breath, having joint aches, stomach problems, headaches, fatigue, and all other kinds of aches, you may have HVS. Google it and you will find some very helpful websites.

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  • My daughter was running and suffered some kind of attack which caused her to be short of breath. In ended in her hyperventilating. We took her to the ER, and they found nothing wrong with her lungs or heart. However, for the next 8 weeks, she continued to take these painful, gasping breaths. She also began suffering from severe joint aches. After 4 more ER visits, countless blood tests, 2 CT scans, 3 x-rays, and appointments with a pulmonologist, rheumatologist, and internist, who tested for lupus, I took her back to the pulmonologist because her main symptom was this constant gasping for breath. He consulted with another physician who immediately said she had sighing syndrome. Our doctor had never heard of it, but prescribed Zoloft because it apparently is caused by anxiety. After Googling "sighing syndrome", I hit several websites covering "Chronic Hyperventilation Syndrome" or HVS, which fit my daughter's symptoms to a tee. The problem is, because of the constant struggle to take breaths, the patient is taking in oxygen but releasing too much carbon dioxide, which causes all kinds of other symptoms. The main treatment is not drugs but teaching the patient to learn to breath normally again because they are breathing thoracically instead of diaghramatically. All the information I read indicated that many people suffer from this for months and years before it is diagnosed, because so many doctors don't know about it. So I'm just writing about our experience and suggesting that, if you find yourself sighing, yawning, and feeling like you are not getting a deep breath, having joint aches, stomach problems, headaches, fatigue, and all other kinds of aches, you may have CVS. Google it and you will find some very helpful websites.I am very sorry about all this- I honestly think she is suffering from the invisible disease. There is no origin or scientific explanation to a HVS- and that ought to be a sign that the diagnosis given is just a label. Labels often don't make people feel better and don't solve any problems. They are just umbrella terms to describe a situation.In other words, she is sick all over and Zoloft should not be in the picture- because it does not reverse conditions and it certainly can't heal a single cell of her body. Instead is toxic.The invisible disease is complex but easy to fight and defeat.I wonder if she start feeling sick 2 to 4 hours after she eats?Please ask the doctor how to go about stopping the Zoloft.Panic, depression, and anxiety don't exist- it is only toxicity and deficiency at the neuronal level that cause these symptoms.Check this links, but as noted on the first link, Candida is not always involved.http://www.drcranton.com/yeast.htmPeople with high level of toxicity become angry, hopeless, and suicidal.Inventory her food intake. Discontinue wheat, milk, and sugar ASAP.Browse around the forum- everyday there is a person like you coming here. Same story, different "label".
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • January 13, 2007
    • 07:11 PM
    • 0
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  • Please try to get your daughter to an acupuncturist. It can really help. She should not be on zoloft - this is a horrible drug and I agree with the last post is only masking symptoms. Deep, three part breath (lower abdominal, intercostal/diaphragm, and upper chest) is a very good yogic form of breathing. If she can practice this daily, only for about 10 breaths at a time, she should start seeing results. Also certain vitamin/mineral deficiencies can cause these symptoms. Is she taking a good quality multivitamin? I recommend EmergenC, as it is readily available, easy to take, and gives good energy. Hope this helps.Doctor of Oriental Medicine
    acuann 3080 Replies
    • January 14, 2007
    • 03:33 AM
    • 0
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  • Please try to get your daughter to an acupuncturist. It can really help. She should not be on zoloft - this is a horrible drug and I agree with the last post is only masking symptoms. Deep, three part breath (lower abdominal, intercostal/diaphragm, and upper chest) is a very good yogic form of breathing. If she can practice this daily, only for about 10 breaths at a time, she should start seeing results. Also certain vitamin/mineral deficiencies can cause these symptoms. Is she taking a good quality multivitamin? I recommend EmergenC, as it is readily available, easy to take, and gives good energy. Hope this helps.Doctor of Oriental MedicineVitamin C is amazing- I heard of people about to drop dead who administered large dosages of Vitamin C (to bowel tolerance) and cheated death.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • January 14, 2007
    • 05:44 AM
    • 0
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  • Hyperventilation Syndrome can be caused by a great many things. The best way to go forward is to understand it. I would highly recommend the book " Multidisciplinary approaches to Breathing pattern disorders" ISBN 0 443 07053 9 (Leon Chaitow, Dinah Bradley, Christopher Gilbert) This will give you a very indepth but easy to read reference book about how it comes about and what treatments are available. These include anything some of the reasons that may trigger an episode, including "learnt behaviour" panic, stress, caffiene or around day 22 of the mentrual cycle. There are others.The best thing to do is first to recognise that the overbreathing is happening and slow the breathing down to get more normal levels of carbon dioxide into the blood stream. Yoga breathing excercises, buteyko method excercises are also useful to know. You can also use an oximeter to show the overbreather what is happening. Make sure you buy one that can show up to 100%. Once armed with knowledge and the book. I have found medical professionals are also impressed with this book. You should seek out a proper respitory specialist to check everything is OK. If your daughter is young then some small changes may benefit her.My research is into people with Multiple Sclerosis and overbreathing. I have found that recognition and treatment of overbreathing helps to increase the quality of life of those with MS and could possibly reduce the number of relapses. If you are an overbreather does not mean that you will get MS
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • February 24, 2007
    • 10:56 AM
    • 0
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  • I have had this disorder for a good part of 10 years. I have consistantly been diagnosed with anxiety disorders, however, all of the therapists that I have been to are puzzled by my breathing symptoms and lack of panic attacks. I have diagnosed myself with hyperventilation disorder. I have 100 percent of the symptons. Also, I understand that some aspects of this disorder are triggered by anxiety, I think the best way to treat it is not via anxiety medications. For so many years I have wondered why I get symptoms after I drink coffee (caffeine trigger) or turning on the heat or a/c in the car. I am very happy to understand more now about what is going on with me. I really wish doctors would listen completely sometimes!!
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I have had chronic hyperventilation syndrome for about 5 years. I have symptoms almost daily but I am on an extremely high dose of effexor and that has helped me quite a bit. Before I was on effexor i could barely get out of bed because of the extreme dizziness and light headedness and the feeling like you're not in you're own body. There are some things that trigger this dreadful thing like caffeine, salt and high sugur. A good multi vitamin will be good for you but it will not help this syndrome very much. There needs to be an easy cure for this syndrome but there isen't and some of us have to live with it.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • ive been living with HVS for a couple of years and ive just been diagnosed cause i thought it was my heart. this syndrome has shattered my life makining me ill just b4 university and it all manifest from working in the bank i started obcessivly quaduple checking the numbers and i ended up taking deep breaths messing up my life. but now i understand there r 3 triggars. i got a method 2 treat 1 of those which is anxiety which i do boxing everyday and that also tackles depression, the second triggar is emotional stress which being in a relationship can cause like i thought i was alergic 2 my girlfriend but i understand now so now im facing the rest of my life alone cause girls make me ill, its madness init the third is stress and that working so i feel mentally disabled. so i hate 2 burst ur bubble but if u got chronic HVS then u have 2 spend the rest of ur life suffering IF ANYBODY KNOWS A CURE PLEASE EMAIL ME tolfbar85@yahoo.co.uk I THINK THE KEY 2 GETTING BETTER IS TO BECOME SPIRITUAL LIKE A HIPPY MEDITATE, if uve had this 4 a while u might of tryed 2 kill yourself just remember it does ease up the trick is 2 keep yourself occupied because ull get obcesive thoght and its all downhill after that im 22 and my lifes ruined if theres light at the end of the tunnel please email me
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • ive been living with HVS for a couple of years and ive just been diagnosed cause i thought it was my heart. this syndrome has shattered my life makining me ill just b4 university and it all manifest from working in the bank i started obcessivly quaduple checking the numbers and i ended up taking deep breaths messing up my life. but now i understand there r 3 triggars. i got a method 2 treat 1 of those which is anxiety which i do boxing everyday and that also tackles depression, the second triggar is emotional stress which being in a relationship can cause like i thought i was alergic 2 my girlfriend but i understand now so now im facing the rest of my life alone cause girls make me ill, its madness init the third is stress and that working so i feel mentally disabled. so i hate 2 burst ur bubble but if u got chronic HVS then u have 2 spend the rest of ur life suffering IF ANYBODY KNOWS A CURE PLEASE EMAIL ME tolfbar85@yahoo.co.uk I THINK THE KEY 2 GETTING BETTER IS TO BECOME SPIRITUAL LIKE A HIPPY MEDITATE, if uve had this 4 a while u might of tryed 2 kill yourself just remember it does ease up the trick is 2 keep yourself occupied because ull get obcesive thoght and its all downhill after that im 22 and my lifes ruined if theres light at the end of the tunnel please email meYes, meditation has helped me a lot with chronic HVS and OCD. There is good info at www.rigpa.org, a Tibetan Buddhist meditation site. There is a link to watch some videos I found very helpful! Hang in there brother.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • November 11, 2009
    • 06:24 PM
    • 0
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  • Hello, I have disordered breathing. I am an asthmatic & was suffering shortness of breathe, with no relief from my inhalers. To cut a long story short (drs, chest x-ray, heart test, respiratory specialist!) I am now going to a breathing physiotherapist to learn how to breathe properly. I am breathing in my upper chest and need to learn to breathe using my diaphram, which will help slow down my breathing. I have felt unwell for a few months. I have been practising my breathing exercises for the last 5 weeks and I am feeling a bit better, at least I know what it is now. Hang in there everyone, I highly recommend going to a breathing physio therapist.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • August 13, 2010
    • 09:08 AM
    • 0
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  • Weight gain from zoloft is not a pretty picture, as these quotes from zoloft users show. The worst part of the zoloft weight gain lies in the the fact that it's almost impossible to lose the weight while you're taking zoloft.http://www.sideeffectsguide.org/zoloft-side-effects/visit your doctor
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • September 26, 2010
    • 08:58 AM
    • 0
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  • HVS is caused by adrenal disease. The person has typically had adrenal disease/low hormones (like Addisons or hypoaldosteronism)for quite some time. Eventually metabolic acidosis sets in where blood ph is too acidic. The body's compensatory method is to use hyperventalation to expel more CO2, decreasing the acidity of the blood.This is not a phantom disease, it has a cause and the root cause is low adrenal hormone output (cortisol/aldosterone).
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • December 21, 2010
    • 09:18 AM
    • 0
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  • I have had chronic hyperventilation syndrome for about 3 years.thanks good post Replica BreitlingReplica OmegaReplica MontblancReplica Iwc
    97mhwwum 1 Replies
    • December 23, 2010
    • 10:39 AM
    • 0
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  • Hi There,The only book you'll ever need to cure Chronic Hyperventilation is a book called "Close your mouth", you'll get it on amazon for about £6, it explains it all and how to overcome without the need for any drugs or vitamins.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • December 24, 2010
    • 08:57 AM
    • 0
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  • Hello, I have disordered breathing. I am an asthmatic & was suffering shortness of breathe, with no relief from my inhalers. To cut a long story short (drs, chest x-ray, heart test, respiratory specialist!) I am now going to a breathing physiotherapist to learn how to breathe properly. I am breathing in my upper chest and need to learn to breathe using my diaphram, which will help slow down my breathing. I have felt unwell for a few months. I have been practising my breathing exercises for the last 5 weeks and I am feeling a bit better, at least I know what it is now. Hang in there everyone, I highly recommend going to a breathing physio therapist.Butekyo Method and the frolov breathing device are awesome for this, also make sure you get a chin strap to stop yourself mouth breathing at night as mouth breathing is the killer here.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Please ignore all the posts which say there is one cause, or that all that is needed is to eliminate certain common foods from your daughters diet.There are many possible causes, & the condition can persist after the original cause (or causes - there may be more than one in a particular case) has gone away. I developed it after a succession of possible triggers. In a relatively short time, I had adhesive capsulitis (self-limiting, but very painful), surgery to relieve blocked sinuses, an antibiotic-resistant bacterial respiratory tract infection, an unidentified viral illness which left me with post-viral fatigue for a few months, then an elbow injury which was very slow to heal, & gastro-oesophageal reflux disease possibly brought on by the painkillers I was taking for my elbow. After recovering from all of those except the elbow (now better) & the GORD, I was suffering chest pains, shortness of breath, spells of dizziness, & numbness & tingling in my extremities, & even slight exercise left me gasping for breath. My wife was sympathetic but frustrated.My heart function & circulation were checked, & found to be much better than average for my age. The cardiologist recommended I see a respiratory consultant, who told me that as soon as I started talking to him, he could hear that my breathing was disordered. He checked my lung function, but found that was also good. He reckoned that I was suffering from chronic hyperventilation syndrome brought on by my previous illnesses, probably by a combination of physical effects & the psychological stress of a long spell of illness. My blood pH was high, which fits HVS (CO2 level is reduced). In his opinion, I'd probably got over all the causative illnesses, & all that was needed was to treat the HVS.He sent me to a specialist physiotherapist. She demonstrated to me how my breathing was disordered, explained that correcting it could take months, & prescribed breathing exercises. I said that it sounded difficult & uncomfortable, & she agreed - but insisted that it had a very high success rate. It's certainly working for me. After four months of following the regime she prescribed, I'm not yet back to where I was the year before last, but most of the difference is just lost fitness. I've got up to over 40 miles on bike rides, & hope to be back to proper fitness soon. I'm breathing pretty normally now. All the other symptoms have gone. It's not been easy. The exercises sound ridiculously simple, but in practice, they're hard for someone whose breathing is disordered, even someone who's only been suffering for months, as I had. I imagine it's worse if your breathing has been disordered for longer. The exercises get easier, though. I'd already adjusted my diet (less strong coffee, less fat, fewer hot curries, etc) & eating habits (e.g. more but smaller meals, don't eat shortly before going to bed) for the GORD, & I was told that some of that should also help with the HVS. Once the condition starts, it can get into a feedback loop. It causes anxiety, which makes it worse. It changes blood chemistry - and that also makes it worse. The body adjusts to depressed blood CO2 levels, & adjusting back is very uncomfortable.Same diagnosis & same treatment as breathein - and I'm much better now, & continuing to improve. Even the GORD is greatly improved. I've not given up anything I enjoy, but I've cut down a bit on some things. Nothing to excess. No drugs or devices for the HVS.The respiratory specialist told me they got a lot of people passed on from cardiology.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
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