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Respiratory Therapist/Shortness of breath


Hi Larry
I am 57. I am about 30 pounds overweight, I have hypertension (treated), and sleep apnea (I am on a CPAP). In the last couple of years I have noticed that I am getting slightly short of breath from movements that in the past wouldnt cause this, like running across the street,etc., and I need a rest now after mowing the yard, etc. I am assuming this is just getting older, and being heavier. I have been exercising  and doing cardio for about 30 minutes three times a week on my stationary bike all winter. Just to test my fitness, I went for a jog outside and I kept going for over 30 minutes, not breathing that hard. Could have gone further but my feet got sore. I am thinking my heart and lungs are OK. Am I just being a hypochondriac, and this is just a sign of getting older, or could it be something else? I also plan on trying harder to lose the weight. Thanks for your thoughts!

Hi Bud,

Thank you for entrusting me with your personal health concerns today, I will do my best to give you informatiojn that is useful. I am a bit youunger than you, but I have the same issue when it comes to running. My cardio fitness is fine, but my feet get very angry with running. Most of that is because I am 40-50 pounds overweight. The other part of it is, as you stated, getting older. More than likely, you are simply dealing with the aches and pains of an aging, overweight individual.

Best bet to take stress off your feet is to lose weight and continue doing lower-impact exercise like cycling until your weight is more normalized. Less weight on the feet and ankle joints will result in less stress on the feet and easier running.  

I hope this helps!

Best of health to you,

Larry W, RRT

Respiratory Therapist

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Larry W. Wical, BA-RRT


I CAN answer: ALL questions and queries related to the following topics... - Oxygen - Asthma - COPD - Bronchitis - Emphysema - Pneumonia (Viral/Bacterial) - Tuberculosis (TB) - SARS - Influenza (Flu) - Vaccines - Pulmonary Embolism - Pleural Effusion - Atelectasis - Inhalation injuries (burns, chemicals, etc.) - PFTs - Cardiovascular health - Sleep Apnea - BiPap/CPAP - Ventilators (Respirators) - Aspiration injuries - Thoracic injuries - Lung contusions - Tracheal injuries - Artificial Tracheostomy - Secretions - Prolotherapy/Regenerative Injection Therapy (RIT): A patient's experience/perspective - General health and fitness - Prolotherapy (from a patient's perspective) I CANNOT answer: Questions that vary too far from my primary scope of pulmonary and cardiovascular care and fitness. I promise to be open and honest about my knowledge of submitted topics, and will always openly provide my personal as well as professional feedback as it relates.


Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT, RCP) since 2005. I have worked primarily in the acute care, critical care, burn care and home care settings.

NBRC - National Board of Respiratory Care AARC - American Association of Respiratory Care

-All About Kids Magazine -The Clermont Sun -Cincy Sports & Fitness Magazine -Many online Fitness and Health blogs and "webazines"

- B.A. in Communication (1997) - A.A.S. in Respiratory Science (2005) - RRT license (state of OH, KY and IN) - Basic Life Saving (BLS) - Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support (ACLS) - Advanced Burn Life Support (ABLS)

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Currently work in the city's largest academic/research hospital.

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