Q. I have shortness of breath, which goes away with antibiotics and comes back later. Please help.

Answered by
Dr. Muhammad Zubayer Alam
and medically reviewed by Dr. Preetha J
This is a premium question & answer published on Oct 12, 2020 and last reviewed on: Oct 22, 2020

Hi doctor,

I have shortness of breath, and I feel like I cannot take a deep breath. But my blood oxygen level is 97, and lungs are clear. Heart echo came back good. When I take an antibiotic and inhaler, the shortness of breath goes away but comes back about two weeks later. Currently, I am taking Lisinopril and Klonopin.



Welcome to

Thanks for the query. I can understand your concern. According to your statement, you have been suffering from shortness of breath. I have gone through your investigation reports (attachment removed to protect patient identity) and found that all parameters are normal, and within the limit, your eosinophil count is slightly high. Your shortness of breath may result from any respiratory causes.

So it would help if you underwent some investigations like CXR (chest x-ray), HRCT (high-resolution computed tomography) of chest, pulmonary function test, reversibility test, skin prick test, RAST (radioallergosorbent) test, etc., to find out the underlying causes for your current sufferings and then treat them accordingly.

You can take Fexofenadine, Montelukast with or without antibiotics coverage.

In case of any other query, ask me.

Hi doctor,

Thank you for your reply.

If it goes away with an antibiotic, it must be an infection, but my doctor says that my lung x-rays are clear and lungs look good.



Welcome back to

Thanks for joining again.

Yes, you are right. If it goes away only by the antibiotic, then it must be a respiratory tract infection. Your CXR is not provided here. Your doctor's prescription is also not available here. I want to see his diagnosis and prescribing medications. Has he prescribed the only antibiotic?

Another possibility is allergies, as your eosinophils count are above normal. You may suffer from any allergies like foods, dust, mite, smoke, or any other. Repeated exposure to allergens or irritants may cause you shortness of breath.

Again some psychological issues such as anxiety disorder, depression, stress, tension, etc., may cause such clinical features.

For that reason, I have already mentioned some investigations that will help to exclude any respiratory causes.

In the meantime, you can take the medications as follows-

  • Tablet Allegra (Fexofenadine) 120 mg once at night for ten days.
  • Tablet Singulair (Montelukast) 10 mg once at night for 15 days.

Avoid the allergens or irritants if you have a history of allergy and take the medications mentioned above to subside your present sufferings.

If any other query, knock me, and I will try to reply to you further.

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