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Doctor insights on: Why Am I Short Of Breath If My Oxygen Saturation Is Good

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Please help docs! Is oxygen saturation the same things as oxygen uptake?

Please help docs! Is oxygen saturation the same things as oxygen uptake?

Not quite: Oxygen saturation reflects the proportion of red blood cell pigment - hemoglobin that is loaded ("saturated") with oxygen. It is unitless and shown as %. Oxygen uptake is the quantity of oxygen absobed/ consumed per unit time, usually in milliliters per min. ...Read more

Dr. Scott Bolhack
3,115 Doctors shared insights

Oxygen (Definition)

Oxygen is a gas that the cells in your body need to work properly. The air we breathe normally has 21% oxygen. A maximum of 100% oxygen can be given. Babies with heart or lung problems may need ...Read more


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Why am I short of breath if my oxygen saturation is good?

Why am I short of breath if my oxygen saturation is good?

Anxiety?: In most cases adequate oxygen saturation indicates that your lungs and blood work well to supply oxygen to your organs. Some evaluation may still be necessary, but feeling air hunger when objectively none exists usually indicates anxiety. If th proves to be correct, treatment may involve anti-anxiety medication, nutritional supplements, some herbs or homeopathy, whatever is best indicated. ...Read more

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Yesterday went to bed with huge acid reflux. Upon waking up a little short of breath. Oxygen saturation normal. Is this common?

Yesterday went to bed with huge acid reflux. Upon waking up a little short of breath. Oxygen saturation normal. Is this common?

Bad reflux can: Cause shortness of breath and can present similar to acute asthma.The acid from the stomach goes up and out the esophagus and down the trachea into the lungs. This acid burns the lungs causing swelling, increased mucus production and narrowing of the airways resulting in cough and shortness of breath. Rx- elevate head of bed to 30 degrees, increase dose of acid blockers, & see ur doc. ...Read more

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Shortness of breath w/normal Oxygen saturation? My Oxy Sat is usually 98 but I've been experiencing shortness of breath, especially when lying flat??

Shortness of breath w/normal Oxygen saturation? My Oxy Sat is usually 98 but I've been experiencing shortness of breath, especially when lying flat??

Short of breath: Hard to tell. Need to see a doc and get labs, chest xray and an exam. Young for CHF. That's where one would start. ...Read more

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Why do I get daily attacks of shortness of breath when my peak flow, oxygen saturation, pulse, temperature, blood test and EKG results are all normal?

Why do I get daily attacks of shortness of breath when my peak flow, oxygen saturation, pulse, temperature, blood test and EKG results are all normal?

Breath: Many things can cause you to feel short of breath. One of the most common is a panic attack. Are you prone to them? Other medical conditions such as congestive heart failure with volume overload are frequently seen in elderly patients. Other heart conditions and pulmonary conditions can cause this as well. In a young healthy person such as yourself a panic attack seems more likely. See your Dr ...Read more

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What would cause shortness of breath and pain in left breast chest CT scan normal X-ray normal abg normal EKG abnormal oxygen saturation normal?

What would cause shortness of breath and pain in left breast chest CT scan normal X-ray normal abg normal EKG abnormal oxygen saturation normal?

It may be the heart!: You need to have your heart checked by a good cardiologist. The best test for you is a session of multifunction cardiogram. It is accurate, affordable and stress, drug and radiation free! Good luck! Http://en. M.Wikipedia. Org/wiki/multifunction_cardiogram. ...Read more

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Why can't I breath but my oxygen saturation level is good?

Why can't I breath but my oxygen saturation level is good?

Shortness of breath: ...Is caused by many abnormalities in the body, not simply low o2 levels. Some patients can have significant shortness of breath from copd, pneumonia, asthma and other illnesses without a low o2 level. If you continue to have trouble, you should see a doctor for evaluation to figure out why this is happening. ...Read more

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What can explain dyspnea with normal oxygen saturation?

Many things: Many causes can give someone dyspnea, ranging from the benign to the deadly, and all with a normal oxygen sat. Best thing is to see your doctor about your complaints. ...Read more

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Does generAl anesthesia cause breathlessness after becoming concious? My oxygen saturAtion was ok but I felt breathless? Why?

Does generAl anesthesia cause breathlessness after becoming concious? My oxygen saturAtion was ok but I felt breathless? Why?

Muscle blockade....: With general anesthesia, neuromuscular blocking agents are often used to paralyze the muscles during the surgery. Sometimes it takes a little while for these to completely wear off. Your respiratory muscles can be affected so you are not taking real deep breaths. This can lead to the feeling of breathlessness. When the melds wear off, you feel normal again. That may be the reason for your symptoms ...Read more

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Is it possible to shallow breath without hyperventilating? What affect does this have on oxygen saturation?

Is it possible to shallow breath without hyperventilating? What affect does this have on oxygen saturation?

Mgt: Shallow respiratory cycles are associated with a number of conditions. The rate of breathing may be increased, normal or decreased depending on the condition. If you are concerned, a virtual consult may be booked online. ...Read more

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Why am I short of breath while on oxygen?

Various: If you have an active infection or other inflammatory process in your lungs, you may still be short of breath. If your oxygen saturation while wearing oxygen is below 90%, you may need higher flow or a different delivery system. Check with your doctor. ...Read more

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I have copd, was put on oxygen due to a bad cold and low oxygen levels. Why am I short of breath while on this oxygen? It's set at 2.

I have copd, was put on oxygen due to a bad cold and low oxygen levels. Why am I short of breath while on this oxygen? It's set at 2.

Several Factors: Your shortness of breath can be due to inadequate oxygen getting into your blood. This is a function of gas exchange.
It might be manageable by increasing your oxygen, but you should check with your doctor first. Sometimes increasing the oxygen can actually make you breathe in and out less, resulting in the retention of carbon dioxide - which is bad.

Good luck and feel free to ask more. ...Read more

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I have copd, but why am I still short of breath while on oxygen?

I have copd, but why am I still short of breath while on oxygen?

Complicated dyspnea: Shortness of breath relates to the work of breathing as well as oxygenation. COPD when severe enough to need oxygen likely is associated with significant increase in the work of moving air into and out of the lungs. If still short of breath on oxygen there may still low oxygen in the blood stream or the work of getting enough into the blood stream may be causing the shortness of breath. ...Read more

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Oxygen level 94 percent still short of breath. What is going on?

Oxygen level 94 percent still short of breath. What is going on?

Short of breath: Short of breath is a symptom and not necessarily a correlate of lowered po2. It correlates with the work of breathing. If you are working hard to maintain normal oxygenation, you still will feel short of breath. ...Read more

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Always feel short of breath when I'm very overtired. My oxygen level is always fine, always figured it was normal. Common?

Short of breath: Feeling short of breath when you are tired is common, and given your age is not likely to be of clinical significance. If you get symptoms with activity when you are well rested, then you can consider further evaluation with primary physician. ...Read more

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I have a pulse/oxymeter at home and it says my oxygen is at 100-98% but I feel short of breath why?

I have a pulse/oxymeter at home and it says my oxygen is at 100-98% but I feel short of breath why?

Unclear: There are many causes of shortness of breath, low oxygen is usually not one of them. Poor conditioning, anemia, heart disease, asthma or copd, and o on are the min culprits. See you doc and get working on an answer. ...Read more

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How can I have an oxygen level of 100% at rest and still be short of breath?

They're different: Oxygen levels have little to do with the sensation of shortness of breath. The work of breathing determines how short of breath you feel. When oxygen levels get too low shortness of breath may occur, but many people feel shortness of breath with totally normal oxygen levels. Even with low oxygen levels you may not feel short of breath at rest. ...Read more

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Why is my oxygen level 98 and I am still short of breath? I have CHF. Is this related?

Why is my oxygen level 98 and I am still short of breath? I have CHF. Is this related?

One possibilty is a: pleural effusion. Fluid accumulates in the pleural space due to high hydrostatic pressures from left heart dysfunction.

If fluid is present, you may need to have it drained with a thoracentesis procedure. First step to diagnosis is a chest xray and ultrasound. ...Read more

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While doing nothing, or just talking I feel short of breath. However, when I exercise I have plenty of oxygen, why?

While doing nothing, or just talking I feel short of breath. However, when I exercise I have plenty of oxygen, why?

Shortness of breath: Shortness of breath at rest, but improved with activity is often due to anxiety. You absolutely need to see a physician to rule out any major medical issues, but if all appears normal on physical examination, often times anxiety is found to be the culprit. You need to discuss this with your primary care physician as soon as possible. ...Read more

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Is it true tht U yawn nt bc your bored tired or stress but bc your nt getting enough oxygen bc I feel that way when I'm short of breath?

Several theories: Yawning (oscitation) most often occurs in adults immediately before and after sleep, during tedious activities and as a result of its contagious quality. Theories involve yawning to get more oxygen to remove a build up of Carbon Dioxide, Boredom, an evolution theory (because our ancestors did it), and a "brain cooling" theory. ...Read more

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My husband's had a bad cold for 3 days & for 12 hours he's felt short of breath, like he can't get enough oxygen. No chest pain. Possible causes?

My husband's had a bad cold for 3 days & for 12 hours he's felt short of breath, like he can't get enough oxygen. No chest pain. Possible causes?

Seek care: Sounds like your husband doesn't just have a cold but may have lung involvement and needs a full exam including a chest X-ray. Suggest he seek care if he is so symptomatic. A ER visit is needed. ...Read more

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If im not getting enough oxygen to my heart would it cause numing in the lips and short of breath. My last test was abnormal and this may be the cause?

Heart problem: When the heart muscle is weak or there are problems with the heart valves shortness of breath with exertion occurs. Sometimes the lips can have a bluish tint due to low oxygenation of tissues. Your cardiologist is the best person to advise you of your condition. ...Read more

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If parts of the lung became hypoxic but the rest of the body had enough oxygen, would this still cause a short of breath feeling?

If parts of the lung became hypoxic but the rest of the body had enough oxygen, would this still cause a short of breath feeling?

Theoretically...: Consider ventilation-perfusion mismatches classically shown by V/Q scans. To deliver oxygen & release carbon dioxide, you need circulating capillaries & open alveoli. "Parts of the lung [becoming] hypoxic" is not exactly the right phrasing. But, along those lines, if you had a lobe collapse, an embolus, or pulmonary edema, if large enough, they will impact ventilation & cause shortness of breath. ...Read more

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23 yrs old, iron saturation 11%, ferritin 7, tibc 475 but normal hgb 13.7? Dr says im fine, but im tired, loose hair, short of breath. Is this normal?

23 yrs old, iron saturation 11%, ferritin 7, tibc 475 but normal hgb 13.7? Dr says im fine, but im tired, loose hair, short of breath. Is this normal?

Abnormal tests: It is not normal for 23 yo to have shortness of breath, tachycardia & hair loss. Saturation & ferritin low. The missing informations are serum iron, retic count, index, irf, stool for occult blood test, heart rate, ANA titer, thyroid test& ct scan result. Your HGB is ok now but will go down. You need thyroid, crp& dnads test for lupus & other diseases please see anemia http://doctorrajput. Com. ...Read more

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How can I tell if I'm truly short of breath? Oxygen sat is 98 & peak flow is normal. Can someone who can talk & breathe w/ mouth closed be SOB?

How can I tell if I'm truly short of breath? Oxygen sat is 98 & peak flow is normal. Can someone who can talk & breathe w/ mouth closed be SOB?

No: No, base on the description provided. Is always good to have a physician check you later on if this sensation persist or if is accompanied other symptoms In my experience taking deep breaths and meditation helps some patients. ...Read more

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I feel short of breath sometimes, I got a chest xray in sept and was normal. Also was checked to see my oxygen level, normal. Heart pumps hard to, help?

Have heart checked: If chest x-ray normal, at age 22, heart problem is not common but should be addressed. Anxiety can give similar symptoms, as can asthma, or side effects of some medications. ...Read more

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Have idiopathic dcm and a bi vent icd. I have times of blue lips and short of breath. Checked oxygen was 98%. Ok but my resting heart 99-110. Feel bad?

Have idiopathic dcm and a bi vent icd. I have times of blue lips and short of breath. Checked oxygen was 98%. Ok but my resting heart 99-110. Feel bad?

O2 sat: The pulse oximetry records arterial oxygen saturation. What you are likely see, especially with your condition is venous congestion that is causing the blueness of your lips and skin. The pulse ox does not measure the venous side. There are rare conditions that can fool the pulse ox (esp older models) like methemoglobinemia, but your story points more to vein congestion with decrease o2 there. ...Read more

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Had sinus surgery 1 week ago. No problems before surgery. Chest X-ray ok. Blood test for dimer ok. Oxygen 99% short of breath. What could it be?

Had sinus surgery 1 week ago. No problems before surgery. Chest X-ray ok. Blood test for dimer ok. Oxygen 99% short of breath. What could it be?

Shortness of breath: You could be short of breath from the surgery. Sometimes after sinus surgery you have swelling and that may make you feel short of breath. Your oxygen saturation is good so it is likely not from low oxygen. ...Read more

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I've been at 3500 feet for 3 days. Been having chest tightness and shortness of breath and Oxygen says 92-95 usually 98. BP 115/75. I felt sick on plane too. Previous heart check was good. Norm chest X-ray. Nobody else has low oxygen here but me.?

I've been at 3500 feet for 3 days. Been having chest tightness and shortness of breath and Oxygen says 92-95 usually 98. BP 115/75. I felt sick on plane too. Previous heart check was good. Norm chest X-ray. Nobody else has low oxygen here but me.?

Mgt.: A virtual inbox consultation is advised, so that you can upload diagnostic study reports for review. You should have close follow up, and if the symptoms worsen or involve any neurologic symptoms, please see the ED. Please monitor your Respiratory effort, and if you are having difficulty, proceed to the ED.
...Read more

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I use a cpap machine and during the day I feel short of breath but my o2 sat is 99%. Is that normal?

I use a cpap machine and during the day I feel short of breath but my o2 sat is 99%. Is that normal?

Short of breath: If you are short of breath with normal oxygenation, that implies you have an increased work of breathing. You should see your doctor and get checked out. ...Read more

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I'm bedridden with CFS. Feel short of breath at all times. Can't hold breath or even speak a sentence. Is this typical of deconditioning? O2 "normal"

I'm bedridden with CFS. Feel short of breath at all times. Can't hold breath or even speak a sentence. Is this typical of deconditioning? O2 "normal"

See you doc: If you have been bedridden for an extended period, you may have developed blood clots in you legs that may have dislodged and gone into your lungs, causing potentially, a pulmonary embolism. Even if you O2 is normal, is that with oxygen supplementation? Are you completely still or does it drop with activity? Regardless, your symptoms are not normal, even for a pt with CFS. ...Read more

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Can asthma result from pneumonia? What is it? Pt walks but at times appears to pant like a dog, may be short of breath. Was on o2 therapy now disc.

Can asthma result from pneumonia? What is it? Pt walks but at times appears to pant like a dog, may be short of breath. Was on o2 therapy now disc.

Wording confusing: Like fever, an asthma flare up can be triggered by many separate types of events, including infection. Childhood asthma is often triggered by lower respiratory viruses. The condition is not the result of a case of pneumonia but may emerge and become more active after such an event. The symptoms you report are common to conditions of the heart and lung. ...Read more

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Cough (dry/little wet) w/pain. Fatigue. 94 O2. 152/96 BP. Shaking. No fever. Short of breath & 100 pulse/rest. Asthmatic. Albuterol every 30min. ER?

Cough (dry/little wet) w/pain. Fatigue. 94 O2. 152/96 BP. Shaking. No fever. Short of breath & 100 pulse/rest. Asthmatic. Albuterol every 30min. ER?

Yes: Call 911 and go to hospital. You are requiring your albuterol too often at home. You need to be assessed to see if you need blood work, XRs, an IV and different meds to make you better. Generally anyone requiring their albuterol medication more often than every 4 hours needs to be assessed. All the best. ...Read more

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I frequently get shortness of breath and it feels like I'm not getting enough oxygen. What could be causing this?

Dyspnea: That sounds alarming. Hard to tell without more information and without physical examination. Possible causes include asthma/pneumonia/pulmonary embolism (cot in the lungs). See a doctor asap. ...Read more

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I have had fluctuating oxygen levels for the last week and shortness of breath. It goes from 98-92. is this normal and what could it be>?

I have had fluctuating oxygen levels for the last week and shortness of breath. It goes from 98-92. is this normal and what could it be>?

Mgt: The range of oxygen saturation varies and the readings are within the normal range. The symptom of shortness of breath is concerning, particularly given your cardiac condition. Please have a Cardiologist evaluate.
Is your shortness of breath worse with exertion or worse at night? You may need a cardiac echo and exercise test. ...Read more

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My blood oxygen level almost 100 % but I have shortness of breath 17/min. ..what can help me breath better?

Stop worrying?: Bassem, clearly you are getting more than enough oxygen and 17 brpm is hardly elevated. If you are anxious about something, talk to someone. If your nose feels clogged you can use a saline spray. If you find yourself breathing VERY rapidly it can even make you feel more short of breath, so breathe in a brown paper bag for a few mins. If you are in pain or have a cough or fever, see a clinic. ...Read more

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I'm 18yrs of age I be having shortness of breath through out the day where it feel like I don't have no oxygen and I worry because I think ima stop

Anxiety: Your symptoms can be caused by anxiety among other things. Are you stressed out? Or, do you have a fever, cough, phlegm, loss of appetite? Do you smoke? (please don't!)
you'd feel better if you had a chest x-ray and knew it was normal. If you can see a family doctor, it would be a good idea - just for peace of mind. Good luck! ...Read more

Dr. Luis Villaplana
835 Doctors shared insights

Shortness Of Breath (Definition)

Breathlessness is the sensation of not being able to catch one's breath. It may be seen in asthma, heart failure, ...Read more


Dr. Alexander Bankov
94 Doctors shared insights

Oxygen Saturation (Definition)

Oxygen saturation is a measure of how much oxygen the blood is carrying as a percentage of the ...Read more