Exercise after lockdown in Uk

I wonder if someone can advise me please.  I am a fit 80 years old  and had a successful hip replacement five months ago. I  have had my pacemaker for four years now and I’m delighted with it and have had no problems. However, due to the coronavirus and a chest infection after my hip operation my GP said I had to shield indoors for nearly 3 months. I was  allowed out for exercise yesterday and was surprised to find I was extremely short of breath after going a few yards. During a 15 minute walk I had to stop about six times to catch my breath before going on.  Today again I was very short of breath after walking a short distance. During the lockdown I have tried to keep active by walking on my small balcony as I do not have a garden. I am hoping this breathlessness is because I am simply unfit and I will gradually be able improve my exercise capacity. Does anyone have any thoughts on this please. Should I bother my Doctor? 

Thanks in advance


2 Comments

Ongoing chest infection ?

by Gemita - 2020-06-08 18:21:44

Hello Noomin,

I am wondering whether your chest infection has completely resolved ?  That could cause breathlessness on exertion. It can take a while before you can feel completely well again. Have you been tested for Coronavirus?  I would speak to your GP and explain how you feel. They might want to do a few checks to ensure you remain safe and well. I have just recovered from a chest infection which only resolved after three courses of antibiotics and I too was feeling quite breathless again.

Alternatively you could have a word with your pacemaker clinic and ask their advice. Is this breathlessness new?  Are you being monitored from home or do you attend annual checks ? Sometimes an arrhythmia can cause breathlessness on exertion and an ongoing infection can certainly cause worsening arrhythmias.  It did for me.  I too suffer from paroxysmal AF.  I see you do too  In the meantime I would take it slowly until you get some answers. Take good care

Update:  Crustyg makes a very good point (below) although I sincerely hope this will not be the cause of your breathlessness.  Sometimes post hip surgery anemia can develop from blood loss during surgery and anemia can certainly cause breathlessness.

Get your O2sat% checked

by crustyg - 2020-06-09 05:04:54

I'm afraid you'd be a prime candidate for blood clots in the lungs - hip operation, forced sedentary lifestyle => blood clots in the big veins in the pelvis.  It's why in modern hospital practice they are so keen to get you up and about post hip replacement.  It's not just about getting the bed back!

If you can, get your O2sat checked (at your doctor's practice or buy a cheap one online - about £20).

I wouldn't hesitate, call your Doc.

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