Shortness of Breath and Fatigue: Symptoms or Side Effects?

Shortness of breath and fatigue are often symptoms of conditions like respiratory disease, but could also be side effects associated with certain medications. Below is a list of diseases and conditions associated with symptoms like shortness of breath and fatigue, as well as a list of medications related to similar side effects. We are not medical professionals, and these may not be comprehensive lists. Please contact your doctor if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms or side effects, or similar health issues.

Shortness of Breath and Fatigue Are Symptoms Of

Asthma: Asthma is inflammation and constriction of the bronchial tubes. Attacks can be triggered by airborne allergens, stress, cold air, air pollutants, acid reflux, and more. Shortness of breath, wheezing, and chest tightness are common symptoms. The restriction of air flow can lead to fatigue.

Obesity: Obesity is a condition in which you have accumulated enough excess body fat to cause health problems. Shortness of breath and fatigue are common symptoms of obesity and the condition can lead to other life threatening health problems such as sleep apnea, heart problems, and stroke.

Weight Gain / Lack of Exercise: Sometimes the simplest explanation is the correct explanation. You don’t have to be obese to feel the effects of weight gain and general lack of exercise.

Asbestos-Related Diseases: Asbestos exposure can affect the entire body but most often causes conditions that affect the lungs. Among these are asbestosis which is scaring of the lungs, and mesothelioma which is cancer of the lining of the lungs. Both can take decades to manifest symptoms. Symptoms include shortness of breath, fatigue, and pain.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder: Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is a mental health disorder that involves chronic anxiety and excessive worrying for no known reason. GAD can cause shortness of breath, fatigue, muscle tension, irritability, difficulty swallowing, hot flashes, trembling and more.

Shortness of Breath and Fatigue Are Side Effects Associated With

Potassium-sparing Diuretics: Diuretics increase urination to relieve fluid retention. They are used to treat many conditions including heart conditions and premenstrual syndrome (PMS). Potassium-sparing diuretics, such as Amiloride, Spironolactone, and Triamterene, help the body retain potassium while expelling fluid, and can have side effects that include shortness of breath, skin rashes, and itching.

Indera: Indera (Propranolol) is a beta blocker used to treat tremors, high blood pressure, chest pain, heart rhythm disorders, migraines and to prevent heart attack. Side effects can include shortness of breath, fatigue, depression, impotence, memory loss, and slow heart rate.

Lopressor: Lopressor (metoprolol) is another beta blocker. It is used to treat chest pain and high blood pressure and to prevent high blood pressure. Metoprolol can have side effects that include fatigue, shortness of breath, impotence, inability to achieve orgasm, fainting, depression, swelling of the ankles and feet, and cold hands and feet.

Digoxin: Digoxin is widely used in the treatment of various heart conditions, namely atrial fibrillation, atrial flutter and sometimes heart failure. It decreases the conduction of electrical impulses through the AV node and increases the force of contraction of the heart. However, Digoxin is very dose-sensitive, as was demonstrated by the many victims in pending digoxin lawsuits over the recalled brand Digitek.

Interferon: Interferon stimulates the immune system and is used to treat diseases such as hepatitis and cancer. Side effects can include shortness of breath, fatigue, and flu-like symptoms such as fever, chills, muscle aches, and headache.

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Everett Sizemore is the owner and Editor of US Recall News: He is dedicated to educating people about consumer safety, social activism and corporate responsibility by bringing information to Americans about the products they use every day.

6 thoughts on “Shortness of Breath and Fatigue: Symptoms or Side Effects?

  1. i am a 53 yr old male slightly overweight but not totally unhealthy. For the past 3 to 4 months i have been experiencing the shortness of breath and also some muscle fatigue upon doing the slightest of chores. Ive had EKG’s, Echocardiograms, chest xrays, lung oxygen tests and a stress test. All were of normal results. Its beginning to get worrisome as i can not continue to take off work for appointments and tests, and at the same time i cant continue to work under these conditions.i do have slightly high blood pressure, GURD, and am anemic. Anyone out there have any results for similar circumstances?

  2. I am 75 yrs old,have had cancer of ths bladder its gone now over a year. Im 6 ft wt 205 eat fairlysafe food and was in great shape a year ago.Just started a few months ago with a breathing problem but not real severe.I stopped working out about 6 months ago and im going to try it again before I get too panic about the breathing. Have done a lot of research on breathing, truthfully I have an oversion to doctors and as wrong as I know it is ,I always seem to wait before i go.Anyone my age maybe going through the same thing. Drop a line Tony

  3. I’m only 56. I had a heart attack in 2008 and was hit by a truck running a red light in 2002. Life has been extremely stressful, getting worse and worse – I’m hoping there is a non-heart-related explanation because I just lost my health benefits within the past 3 months, and then this shortness of breath started.
    I cannot do any physical attivity whatsoever without getting shortness. Here in FL, the heat is particularly damaging and I’m hoping that when it abates in the next few weeks, the shortness of breath will decrease. I’m worried, which is probably increasing the feeling, and I have been getting panic attacks to go along with it – say if I lie down and suddenly feel shortness of breath, I begin to panic.
    Since I have no bennies now, I am wondering whether to go the ER, or whether there is something I can do, or some combination of things, to help the problem. I intend to start riding my bicycle as soon as the weather lets up. I am not an especially unhealthy eater, nor am I an especially healthy eater – I’m overweight but not obese – 218, 5/10. Actually lost about 25 lbs in the past 6 months. Any suggestions. Thanks so much. Kenny

  4. For the past three years I’ve expeirenced shortness of breath doing minor choirs.
    It seems to be getting worse and I’ve have chest pain of and on. My cardiogst says I have some cononary artery desease but is not concerned at this time. I have had radical prostate cancer surgery 10 years ago. For the last 3/4 years I’ve been fighting ulcertative colitis. Monday I go in for my 5th colonscopy. They have removed polps in the past and its been two years since the last one. For the life of me we can not find out my shortness of breath. Anyone had similar symptoms the have found out the answer. I would appreciate hearing from you.

  5. 75 year old male, non smoker/drinker ever, however overweight. no heart problems in family but have managed high blood pressure with Lotrel. Am retired and have some medical problems i.e. stenosis lumbar resulting in sciatica unsucessfully operated on and arthritis of both knees both of which allow me only short walks etc. Some months back I began to notice a distinct shortness of breath that whan doing minor chores about the apartment ( wife works 6 days a week) The condition results in inability to perform minor chores without sitting down or leaning on a piece of furniture. Also when taking short walks any upgrade in the road or climbing 13 stairs to my apartment brings on the symptom. My doctor is on vacation and because the condition has gone on as long as it has I decided to wait for her return.


    Bob Stanton

  6. digoxin causes insomnia, shortness of breath, frequent urination, depression and cold hands and sun sensitivity and eye sesitivity for me. How about for you?

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