Shortness of breath, also known as dyspnoea, can be a warning sign of an underlying health problem. Dyspnoea can happen as a result of overexertion, spending time at high altitude, or as a symptom of a range of conditions. The onset of dyspnoea should not be ignored and is reason to seek medical attention.
Acute dyspnoea (sudden shortness of breath)
If shortness of breath starts suddenly, it is called an acute case of acute dyspnoea. It typically indicates acute and severe conditions that may be life-threatening.
Chronic dyspnoea (long-lasting shortness of breath)
Chronic dyspnoea has been defined as shortness of breath lasting longer than a month and usually has a different set of causes from acute dyspnoea.
Learn how to distinguish between acute and chronic dyspnoea, so you can manage symptoms when they occur and find the appropriate treatment you need.
Feeling short of breath can be an uncomfortable or frightening experience, especially if it has never happened to you before. If you are having shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, go to the A&E department immediately.
Infographic is reviewed by
Dr Chew Huck Chin, respiratory physician at Mount Elizabeth Novena Hospital
Dr Othello Dave, deputy medical director at Parkway Hospitals
Infographic brought to you by Health Plus
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Shortness of Breath (2018, January 11). Retrieved August 14, 2018, from https://www.mayoclinic.org/symptoms/shortness-of-breath/basics/definition/sym-20050890
Shortness of Breath (Dyspnea): Symptoms & Signs, from https://www.medicinenet.com/shortness_of_breath/symptoms.htm