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Respiratory distress

Respiratory distress

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Respiratory distress is a condition in which a person experiences difficulty breathing. It is a medical emergency that requires immediate attention. Symptoms of respiratory distress include shortness of breath, rapid breathing, chest pain, and wheezing. Sometimes, the person may also experience confusion, dizziness, and fatigue.

The most common causes of respiratory distress are asthma, pneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and pulmonary embolism. Other causes include airway obstruction, heart failure, and drug overdose.

Treatment for respiratory distress depends on the underlying cause. In some cases, supplemental oxygen may help the person breathe more easily. In more severe cases, a ventilator may help the person breathe.

It is important to seek medical attention immediately if you or someone you know is experiencing respiratory distress. Early diagnosis and treatment can help prevent further complications and improve the person’s prognosis.

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  • Mayo Clinic. (2020). Respiratory distress. Retrieved from
  • National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. (2020). Respiratory distress. Retrieved from