Cardiac Symptoms

Shortness of Breath

Shortness of Breath

Shortness of breath, also known as dyspnea, is a symptom characterized by a subjective sensation of difficulty or discomfort in breathing. It is not a specific medical condition itself but rather a symptom of an underlying problem. Dyspnea can occur due to various reasons and can range from mild and temporary to severe and life-threatening. It is important to identify the underlying cause in order to determine appropriate treatment. Here are some common causes of shortness of breath:

  1. Respiratory conditions: Conditions that affect the lungs and airways, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), pneumonia, pulmonary embolism, or lung cancer, can lead to dyspnea.
  2. Cardiac issues: Heart problems like heart failure, coronary artery disease, heart attack, or arrhythmias can cause dyspnea due to the heart’s inability to pump blood effectively.
  3. Anemia: Low levels of red blood cells or hemoglobin in the blood, often caused by conditions like iron deficiency anemia, can result in reduced oxygen-carrying capacity, leading to dyspnea.
  4. Anxiety and panic disorders: Intense anxiety or panic attacks can cause hyperventilation, leading to dyspnea and a feeling of breathlessness.
  5. Obesity: Excess body weight can put strain on the respiratory system, leading to dyspnea, especially during physical exertion.
  6. Allergies: Allergic reactions can cause airway constriction and inflammation, resulting in breathing difficulties and dyspnea.
  7. Lung infections: Infections like bronchitis, pneumonia, or tuberculosis can lead to inflammation and fluid accumulation in the lungs, causing dyspnea.
  8. Pleural effusion: The buildup of fluid in the space between the lungs and chest wall, known as the pleural cavity, can cause compression of the lungs and subsequent dyspnea.
  9. Muscle weakness: Weakness of the respiratory muscles, often seen in conditions like muscular dystrophy or myasthenia gravis, can lead to dyspnea.
  10. Environmental factors: Exposure to high altitudes, extreme temperatures, air pollution, or smoke inhalation can cause temporary dyspnea.
  11. Physical exertion: Engaging in strenuous activities or exercises can lead to a temporary feeling of breathlessness. This is normal and typically resolves after resting.

It is important to consult a healthcare professional if you are experiencing persistent or severe dyspnea, as they can evaluate your symptoms, perform diagnostic tests, and determine the underlying cause. Treatment will depend on the specific cause and may involve medication, lifestyle changes, breathing exercises, oxygen therapy, or other interventions to address the underlying condition and alleviate dyspnea.

Same-Day Cardiac Care

RCC Cardiac Urgent Care is accessible same-day care for non-life-threatening cardiac symptoms, including:

PLEASE NOTE: that this is NOT a traditional Urgent Care Center treating any and all ailments. Our facility is ONLY for cardiac related symptoms.

At our Penn Cardiology Specialty Network facility, you will will be cared for by our team of cardiac specialists, and receive access to our state-of-the-art diagnostic testing, including:

  • EKG
  • Echocardiogram
  • Stress Test
    • Treadmill Stress Test
    • Stress Echo
    • Nuclear Stress Test
  • Halter Monitor
  • Mobile Cardiac Outpatient Telemetry (MCOT)
  • Venous Doppler
  • Arterial Doppler
  • Carotid Doppler

We will work with your primary or referring physicians to develop a plan of treatment that is suited to meet your individual needs.

Same Day Vascular Care

We also provide accessible same-day care for non-life-threatening vascular symptoms, including:

  • Leg Pain or a Change in Color
  • Numbness or Loss of Feeling in Arms or Legs
  • Leg Swelling
  • Diagnosis of Blood Clots in Arms and Legs

Pre-Operative Cardiac Clearance with Rapid Reporting

As more and more complex procedures are performed in the outpatient and inpatient setting, the risk of perioperative cardiac complication increases. Regional Cardiology Consultants’ dedicated team specializes in providing the accurate and timely pre-op clearance required by patients.

Our services include:

  • Pre-op Consult by Board Certified Cardiologist
  • EKG
  • Other diagnostic testing as needed to clear your patients.

Better yet, all services can be performed in the convenience of our offices. In most cases, we can have a preliminary report for your physician the same day as our consult and a folder containing everything you need to proceed with planned surgery including the transcribed pre-op consult, EKG with interpretation, and any other testing required to be cleared for your procedure.

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Regional Cardiology Consultants is dedicated to providing quality, comprehensive, state of the art, compassionate, cost-effective and timely medical services in the promotion of improved health for the community of the greater Philadelphia and New Jersey areas.