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Breathing problems : physical or mental ?

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i cannot take in a deep breath. i constantly feel the need to yawn, but cannot do so. when i was in the ER for alcohol poisoning, the doctor had me laying on my back while i was gagging. could this breathing problem be caused by inhaled vomit? this all started a few days after my alcohol poisoning. i really dont believe it is caused by anxiety and it has not improved at all for two months! also, could it be caused by my back, neck, or spine being out of wack and could a chiropractor maybe help me?

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replied June 6th, 2007
Addiction, Recovery Answer A2849
You wrote: "Current medical status: two months ago i was treated for alcohol poisoning. later that week i developed breathing difficulty- went to a walk in clinic and was diagnosed with bronchitis with RAD. they took a chest xray and found nothing. i was given a Z-pak and albueterol. the next week i went to the emergency room for severe breathing difficulty. they said it was caused by anxiety. they told me to stop taking the inhaler and they gave me a blood test to see if i had a blood clot in my lung. it came back negative. i was prescribed xanax for 3 days."

Lung disorders can be confirmed or excluded by physical examination (auscultation), X-ray image, functional tests (vital capacity, peak-flow-metrics etc.) and gas analyses. The first 3 diagnostic procedures are routine. Gas analyses are done to evaluate the level of lung failure. Albuterol is a beta 2-agonist used for treating bronchial spasms that causes breathing difficulties. An ECG can be also performed to exclude heart disorder as a reason for breathing problems.

When all tests are negative the only remaining diagnostic possibility is anxiety. There is a type of anxiety disorder called "somatoform disorder" or hypochondria wherein a person feels symptoms that can imitate a real organic disease. Somatoform disorder is typical for people your age. Nonetheless, all organic disorders should be excluded first before establishing the diagnosis hypochondria. Further, a mental health doctor might be able to help you more than a chiropractor.

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