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 Post subject: Shallow Breathing
PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2013 1:36 am 
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I am a professional fighter and been on suboxone for1 months. 8mg/2mg strips. Two a day for 15 daysand now down to one a day. When I train I have trouble breathing deep. Its like I been traininghard for a month and my cardio still sucks. Anyone have shallow breathi g? Any ways around it?


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 Post subject: Re: Shallow Breathing
PostPosted: Wed Aug 14, 2013 12:12 am 
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Interesting....

Potent opioid agonists (notably fentanyl) cause chest wall rigidity in some people after large doses. In cardiac anesthesia, patients often experience tightness and can't breathe, just before drifting off.

Buprenorphine is a potent opioid (partial agonist), but I would think that people taking it for maintenance would be completely tolerant to the mu receptor effects-- including chest tightness.

People sometimes feel as if they can't fully expand their lungs-- even when in reality, their lungs are fully expanded. The 'feeling' relies on sensations from stretch receptors in the chest muscles, primarily. It is possible that the 'feeling' is being messed up in some way, even though you are breathing just fine.

I re-read your post... are you suggesting that you are breathing more rapidly? One other issue... when under the effects of opioids, the body's response to CO2 is shifted, so that your drive to breathe decreases for any given level of carbon dioxide. A person experiencing an opioid 'high' will have less drive to blow off carbon dioxide-- meaning that for the same amount of exercise, the work of breathing will be lower. You may be comparing your drive to breathe now, when it is normalized, with how it was before, when you took opioids. I would expect a person abusing opioids to get less short-of-breath with activity. But there would be a cost to that, in the form of faster muscle fatigue from build-up of acids in the tissue.


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 Post subject: Re: Shallow Breathing
PostPosted: Wed Aug 14, 2013 12:23 am 
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That's very interesting dr junig! I have tachycardia my normal bpm hovers around 120. I would get winded very easily but I noticed when taking opiates daily I could be quite a bit more physically active because I wouldn't become as easily winded. Now that I'm on suboxone I think I'm not totally back to where I was before the opiates I think it helps a little, but it's definitely not as beneficial as the full agonist opiates. One pro out of the millions of cons of being on oxycodone I suppose.

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 Post subject: Re: Shallow Breathing
PostPosted: Tue Aug 27, 2013 7:33 pm 
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I had noticeably shallow breathing on suboxone during sleep. I would always wake up with a really tight chest and slight wheezing only on inhale. I thought it was allergies at first and saw a specialist, he said no. I haven't had that issue in the last year off sub. I hated to hear the wheezing sound in the morning, it would always send me into anxious state.


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 Post subject: Re: Shallow Breathing
PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 3:55 pm 
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I have chest tightness on Sub and didn't on other opiates. And I am down to 3-4mgs. When I was on other opiates and had blood tests done mu co2 level were always high, out of range high. I never knew why nor did any of my drs. I'm having blood work done today so i'll see if it has changed. I am having a lot of pain inmy hands, inflmmations I assume on the Sub. I didn't on other opiates. Do


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Fond Du Lac Psychiatry
Dr. Jeffrey Junig, M.D., Ph.D.

  • Board Certified Psychiatrist
  • Asst Clinical Professor, Medical College of Wisconsin

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