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Hello, I have been having problems since last August 2006. I am not a person to go to the doctors very often with "physical" pain/ailments. I perhaps go once ever few years or so. I was diagnosed with schizophrenia many years ago but now that I am having physical problems, I can't seem to find a doctor that will give me the time of day because of my mental health diagnoses. My only known physical dx is high blood pressure (I have been presribed different meds for this, but do not usually take them. Lisinopril is the last one that the doctors prescribed me for my blood pressure) Last August I caught a very bad cold, about a week before I started a new job. This particular cold I got wasn't very unusual but did last longer than normal (about 3 weeks). The only symptom that lingered from it was a very bad cough (which I still have). Since August, my physical health has gone downhill. I started noticing that by the time I got home from work, my toes and the bottom back part of my feet would be numb. I would also find it difficult to breathe while walking around the store where I work, especially later in the evening. Not being able to breathe would also cause me to cough more. I would also (and still do) very suddenly, get very tired. The last week in December, I got yet another cold. It only lasted for about a week, but since then, my symptoms have gotton much worse. The numbness in my feet is now 24/7 and has also started in the very tips of my fingers. I am out of breath more and more especially when walking around or doing simply things around the house and find myself having to sit down to catch my breath. Last weekend, I started getting pain in my left side, right under my breast and also my left upper part of my back. When I breath deeply, the pain is much worse or if I move suddenly. It feels like a severe cramp at times.(if you have had charlie horses in the back of your legs, thats what it feel likes alot of the time) I called my doctors office this past Monday but they had no available appointments..so I went ahead and wentback to work. I ended up having my husband come pick me up 3 hrs before my shift was over and takeme to urgent care because the pain (cramps) inmy side were intolerable. We waited for about 4 hrs to be seen. The doctor that I saw had previously treated me for my mental health problems and simply was not willing to listen to my concerns. He spent (no joke) less than 90 seconds in with me. Told me I probably had some kind of upper respitory infection and left. I never got to tell him these other symptoms (numbness,  shortness of breath ect) I was very upset but went home and went back to work on Tuesday still in pain ect. While at work, I got a very sudden headache and overall, felt "funny". My legs also turned to "jelly". I remember telling my co worker that I needed to sit down for a moment and that is the last thing I remember before waking up in the ER. Even though I WAS able to tell them about my other symptoms, they really had no concern for what I was saying as if I was making it up. They did a chest xray and took blood. When my husband came the first thing they asked my husband was to confirm my mental health DX (the paramedicas had asked my co workers and boss about previous health conditions/meds that Imay be taking) When my husband told them yes..I did have schizophrenia, they dischargedme within 10 mins with a diagnoses of "Brief Reactive Psychosis". Again, I was extrememly upset leaving the ER screaming that they were making a mistake. (I am sure I probably looked a bit psycotic to those in the ER that day) My boss has given me the next few days off to "feel better" but I find myself in more pain, with my fingertips being as numb as my feet now on a continuos basis. The pain has not subsided and I just feel extrememly tired, even walking back and forth from the bathroom exhausts me and breathing is getting more andmore difficult. I am not sure where to go or to who I may be able to talk to about this. I have had schizophrenia for many years now, I am well aware of my symptoms from this particular illness...and the above symptoms I am having are not on that list. Like I said earlier, I am not one who visits the doctor frequently with physical ailments but because of my past mental health issues, I fear that no one will take me serious. Any thoughts on how to go about seeking treatment...??

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Things that have assisted me when I have lingering symptoms like you describe apre cold. Herbal remedy for mucus and adjusting diet by removing mucus producing foods such as dairy and eggs. Also found rice may have been irritating my cough and subsequently elevating the symptom of shortness of breath. Also later experienced some tingling in left arm and leg, but that subsided.... could be due to limited oxygen supply.

As for the numbness in feet and legs -- It sounds like your new job keeps you on your feet and perhaps this problem is related more to standing rather than the original problem of the cold. Although if you are unwell your body may have trouble coping with standing vs if you were feeling better overall.

Here is a collection of things that I believe have resulted in past relief from lingering symptoms from what was possibly a severe case of bronchitus.

heating pad and massage for back. I think the muscles must have been aggrivated from coughing and now the deep drawing of air to try to feel a satisfying breath is aggrivating also. Try not to releeve the breath hunger with large air pulls because that may be agrivating the muscles and not allow them a rest to get back to normal. Breathing exercises for asthmatics was helpful. taking a purposful nap (even 15 minutes) every day. drink plenty of water. Cerrasi tea (bitter so mix with regular tea). Try to capture a yawn (even it seems impossible) instead of trying to fill lungs. This temporarily gives relief from that feeling of air hunger. Used gas pills because even the slightest amount of gas pressure seemed to feel like increased breath hunger. steamy showers before bed. Avoid cold air in lungs. Avoided eating large meals to leave room for air.

Minimising mucus was important because of it covering surface area of lungs that collect the oxygen. Means that less oxegyn can be absorbed in each breath.

Your stuff could be somthing different but the cold upper back was what caught my eye. I am just giving myself time and treating the discomforts. It has helped but has been a slower recover than I wished. I learned just being patient with my progress has helped me not to push my physical stamina and this has helped eleviate setbacks.

hope this helps you figure out what may be helpful and healthy for you.
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