Can neurological problems cause breathing problems?

Neurological Problems - VishwaRaj Hospital

Neurological problems can cause breathing disorders. There are several neurologic diseases that can eventually progress to impaired pulmonary function. However, the most common ones include Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis. In the majority of the cases, it is the breathing complication that worsens the condition or even leads to death.

Symptoms of breathing complication in Parkinson disease

There are various types of Parkinson’s disease. However, respiratory issues are more prevalent in the ones related to autonomic dysfunction. It is mainly because the affected regions in the brain are near to the areas that regulate central respiration. Some of the symptoms are –

  • Central apnea
  • Central hypoventilation
  • Abnormal breathing
  • Cheyne-Stroke patterns
  • Apneustic breathing
  • Cluster breathing

Signs of respiratory disorder in multiple sclerosis

Another neurological disease that causes pulmonary troubles is multiple sclerosis. In most cases, the symptoms are dependent on the lesions which are affected. The symptoms include –

  • Diaphragmatic paralysis
  • Autonomic respiration
  • Apneustic breathing
  • Paroxysmal hyperventilation
  • Neurogenic edema

How can neurological problems cause breathing complications?

When you are suffering from a neurologic disorder, it takes time for the breathing issues to manifest. Often, you can observe it at a later stage. In most cases, it can be triggered due to infection or a fever. As a result, the ventilatory demands of the body increases, and the respiratory muscles fail to perform efficiently.

When the breathing impairment starts, the brain tries to adapt to it. It thus increases the output of the central respiratory systems and ensures that the balance of carbon dioxide and oxygen is maintained. But, in doing so, the patients start to breathe faster.

But, as the disease spreads, hypoventilation occurs. It is an adaptive response of the body to avoid fatigue. There are many other patterns that can enhance breathing troubles. For instance – damaged airway clearance and decreased vital capacity.

Symptoms that can indicate pulmonary issues

There are several symptoms that can give an indication that you are having breathing difficulties. If you know about it, then you can take the necessary action. Check out some of the signs listed here.

  • Onset of orthopnea
  • Absence of snoring
  • Feeling unenergized after waking up
  • Difficulties in sleeping
  • Headaches in the morning

If you suffer from any of these symptoms, it is best to get medical help. Only correct evaluation and diagnosis can assist in the treatment.

Other symptoms associated with neurological disorders

There are other symptoms that can occur at the onset of different neurological problems. Take a look at some of them.

  • Seizures
  • Paralysis (complete or partial)
  • Reduced sense of alert
  • Weakness in the muscles
  • Decreased cognitive abilities
  • Numbness
  • Sudden mood swings
  • Unexpected outbursts
  • Depression

Apart from these, the various disorders also have some particular symptoms. If you know about them, then you can at least identify them. Moreover, you will also know when to call for help.

There is a link between neurological disorders and breathing troubles. And, sometimes, the pulmonary impairment can even lead to death. If you face breathing issues, then the best move is o get medical assistance immediately. Moreover, if you already have a neurologic problem, do not delay the consultation.

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