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Fatigue and AnemiaFatigue and Anemia
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May 3, 2002

Is shortness of breath in HIV related to anemia or could there be another cause?

Response from Dr. Frascino


Shortness of breath can be a sign of many different conditions. For instance, pneumonia, asthma, congestive heart failure and seeing Brad Pitt (or J-Lo) naked can all be associated with shortness of breath.

Yes, indeed, anemia can also cause shortness of breath as well as a variety of other symptoms like fatigue, exercise intolerance, headache, paleness, rapid heart beat, decreased sex drive, and inability to concentrate.

Shortness of breath (called dyspnea) in the setting of HIV disease raises concerns of possible opportunistic infections, such as PCP (pneumocystis carinii pneumonia), and certainly anemia as well. See your HIV specialist right away. The cause for the shortness of breath should be evaluated without delay.

Good luck.

Dr. Bob

Worried and anxious PLEASE PLEASE HELP :)

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