What could have caused my mother's loud breathing?

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This morning when my mother was walking across the living room floor I could hear her breathe. It was very loud. It sounded like it was coming from a big empty space in her chest. The only other time I had heard such loud breathing was from someone who had serious strokes in the past that affected his breathing.

My mother and I made it through church fine, though she was more confused than normal. We went out to lunch with no problem.

But still I wonder what could have caused the loud breathing. It was dry and not rattling. It was through her nose and she looked normal. But I could hear it from several feet away. Any ideas what causes this?

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This is just normal breathing, but very loud like one would expect to hear if she had a microphone on her throat. The sound filled the space. It isn't COPD or the flu -- no congestion at all. If you'll open up the back of your throat and breathe heavily, it is what it sounded like. Maybe she was just breathing very deeply. Strange.
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When I had bronchitis I was puffing like a train when I exerted myself, no coughing, just trouble breathing. Keep a watchful eye.
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First, do not sleep a wink tonight, keep an eye on her all night long. Of course the more sensible solution might have been to go to urgent care.
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Then, it could be something simple like junk in her nose that cleared later. Was her nose sounding like snoring or a slight whistle or wheeze?
Is she okay now?
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No, Jesse, I don't know, as it could be anything. The flu, the dryness of Santa Ana winds here in CA., temporary illness or allergies, lungs, or a heart condition causing the loud noise when breathing. COPD comes to mind. You are right to watch her-be sure to hydrate her (drink water), (except contolled amount if diabetes or kidney disease). Let her rest, elevated head, neck, chest.

Maybe this is one time she should see the doctor, especially if it progresses or changes to labored breathing. Does she have a fever, or did she get a flu shot
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