Riding Bikes, cold and blue lips


I have been doing very well, riding my mountain bike without much trouble, even as it has gotten much colder. However, over the last few weeks, I have noticed that at the end of my ride my lips would turn blue, I have no other symptoms associated with the blue lips.  Tomorrow, I will get my covid test and will be calling my doc on Monday. Has anyone else had this? 


Yes it is important to bring this to the attention of your medical team

by Gemita - 2020-12-05 04:21:45

As you will know, this can be a sign that not enough blood is circulating in the area and if you continue to notice this, it is best to get it checked. 

Have you noticed it happening in any other parts of the body say fingers, toes?  I suffer from sudden poor circulation and so does my husband (we both have pacemakers) and this often results in white or blue/purple lips, finger tips and toes).  Hubby's caused by neuropathy from diabetes + meds, mine from autonomic problems, possibly Raynaud's but we are senior citizens and you are so young ! 

Did you notice any symptoms before you noticed your blue lips, like a fall in blood pressure or heart rate, breathing distress, sudden weakness??  

Blue lips we were told can be caused by exposure to cold air, high altitude, but can be due to serious health conditions that involve the heart, lungs, blood (anaemia for example), circulatory system and to conditions like Raynaud's Syndrome, Diabetes.

Pacemaker checks might also be helpful in case adjustments need to be made.  I wouldn’t push too hard until you have had a medical opinion.

We were told some medication can make us more prone to circulatory problems, like beta blockers for example which slow both heart rate and blood pressure.. Are you taking any meds?

In the meantime, keep well hydrated, that will definitely help with circulation and any low blood pressure, especially if dehydration is present after exercise.  Please let us know what your doctor says.  Hope for the best



Central cyanosis is always serious

by crustyg - 2020-12-05 17:34:16

Just to echo Gemita's excellent advice, lips don't go blue because they are cold.  They go blue because the blood supplying them doesn't have enough oxygen in it.

Blue lips == central cyanosis == right=>left shunting in the lungs.  Blood is getting from the right side of the heart to the left side (and out through the arteries) without picking up enough oxygen in the lungs.  In your situation the likelihood is that an area of lung has lost connection with the airways that provide fresh oxygenated air in - airways collapse or mucus plugging or consolidation with inflammatory cells.

I think you need a face-to-face consultation ASAP.  If you can get access to a pulse-oximeter (measures percentage oxygen saturation in the blood) then you should measure your Hb%O2sat and tell your doc when you can. It may be that the decreased saturation is only a significant problem after you've been exercising - it's still important.

Thank you for the responses!!!

by Pinkit94 - 2020-12-05 19:40:05

Gemita & crustyg,

Thank you so much for your detailed responses, so nice of you to take time out of your day and write such caring responses! 

Gemita - yes, my fingernails get a bit blue, but not as noticeable as my lips. On occasion prior to the blue lips, I get very cold, but no other symptom. I take midodrene (medication to increase my bp) but I only take it as needed - haven't had the need to take it since my ablation back in July 2017. 

Crustyg - I will definitely schedule an appointment with both my GP and my cardiologist. I just find it odd, that back in July 2020, I had an echo, stress, and a device interrogation, all of which were fine. I do have pulse ox, regular room air ranges 96-99, after exercise (while my lips are blue) 86 - 92, after about 2 hrs my lips return to normal color.  

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