Paroxysmal Nocturnal Dyspnea

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Definition - What does Paroxysmal Nocturnal Dyspnea mean?

Paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea (PND) is the term used to describe shortness of breath that occurs suddenly during sleep. During an episode of PND to sufferer is awakened from sleep. Most PND episodes occur within a few hours after an individual falls asleep. However, the events can be recurring. PND is often diagnosed via self-reporting by patients and may be caused by a number of underlying conditions. Among the conditions most often responsible for PND are pulmonary edema, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD), and sleep apnea.

Paroxsymal nocturnal dyspnea may sometimes be called paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnoea.

SureHire explains Paroxysmal Nocturnal Dyspnea

The term paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea (PND) is derived from the symptoms that characterize the condition. The term dyspnea or dyspnoea refers to a feeling of shortness of breath or breathing discomfort. When this shortness of breath occurs while an individual is sleeping, it is further defined as nocturnal. The term paroxysmal refers to the sudden onset of the episodes. Shortness of breath during exercise or other situations is not uncommon. However, when the condition occurs without an obvious trigger, it may be a sign of a serious health condition such as lung cancer, bronchitis, or heart disease.

Nighttime incidences of dyspnea may indicate that fluid has built up in the lungs, which could be a sign of pneumonia or pulmonary edema. Obstructive and central sleep apnea may also cause episodes of PND to occur. PND may temporarily be resolved by sitting upright. However, appropriate treatment of the condition requires identification of the underlying cause and subsequent interventions.

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