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Feeling breathless and swelling legs while climbing up hills.

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Hi there,

I am a man of 59 years old. Apart from the problem I am going to describe, I am almost perfect in health and diet. From the last 3-4 months I feel it difficult to climb up hills. Whenever I try to walk up hills, I feel breathlessness. Apart from this, at that time, my feet will start paining like nothing. I consulted with my doctor and he asked me to take an ECG and blood test. Both tests resulted in nothing apparent. I had been taking a course of antibiotics for leg swelling. After the course, leg swelling disappeared but the pain is still there. Also this makes it difficult for me to do my regular exercises. Is there any possibility that the antibiotic course can pose some side effect, which resulted in paining legs or breathlessness? Please suggest me your advice at the earliest. Thanks.

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Category: Family Physician-GP
 22 Doctors Online

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Considering your age and the symptoms you've been having, it could be an early warning symptom of a heart problem or kidney can also be due to peripheral vascular disease. The most common conditions are


Congestive heart failure

Acute and chronic glomerulonephritis


Valvular heart disease

The pain is most likely not due to side effects of antibiotics. At this stage I would like to recommend you for a thorough heart and kidney evaluation to rule out the most common causes for your symptoms. Considering your age, it even becomes more essential to perform these tests.

The tests which you will require to clench the diagnosis are :

  1. Complete blood count , Hb
  2. Chest x ray
  3. Echocardiogram
  4. Renal function test , mainly serum urea creatinine
  5. Urine protein level
  6. USG abdomen to evaluate liver.

It is advisable to do these tests on yearly basis after the age of 50 to screen most of the disease at early stage.

Certain life style modification also helps in a big way, quit smoking( if you are a smoker), add more green leafy vegetables in your diet, maintain correct BMI, avoid stress, and do not physically exert yourself at this stage.

Consult a GP/ Cardiologist , after a thorough examination he might ask you to do the tests ive mentioned before which will help in diagnosing the problem .It is treatable, hence need not worry .these treatments coupled with lifestyle changes on your behalf can bring back your life on track without any limitations.

Hope this helps. Please feel free to ask if you need further help.

Thank you.

Dr. John Monheit
Category: Family Physician-GP
Residecny: North Colorado Family Medicine
Medical School: The Chicago Medical Center
Dr. John Monheit and 4 other Medical Specialists are ready to help you

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