GP emergency management

Intermittent faintness and shortness of breath in a woman in her sixties: how to manage?

Vivienne Miller



A 64-year-old woman presents at your general practice with faintness and shortness of breath. How do you manage this emergency?

Article Extract

A 64-year-old woman well known to you has arrived at your general practice complaining of faintness and shortness of breath. She tells you she has felt like this on and off for several weeks but this episode is particularly bad. She has been previously very well and is taking no medications, but you recall that she has mentioned she is under a lot of stress. She appears to be hyperventilating and agitated.

What should you do next?