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I couldn't breathe and my stomach clenched. What happened?

I am a swimmer and in the middle of laps, my head started hurting and my stomach felt nauseous but I ignored it. I've been sick the past three days so I just associated it with that. But then I started having trouble breathing and everything was spinning. My stomach felt really tight and clenched up. I stopped and my coach had to spend a long time helping me to regulate my breath again. When my stomach finally started to unclench, it just started hurting and feeling sick, and I felt a lump in my throat.
My friend said I may have had a panic attack (I have two big exams tomorrow) but I didn't feel fear or panic, just physical pain.
Does it sound like a panic attack? Is there anything else it could be?

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No it doesn't sound like a panic attack. It seems to me that one too many things come together in a day. Sickness, exams, workout. You simply get tired and that is how it comes out. But don't worry, take a few days break from your training, finish your exams, get over your sickness then you'll be fine.
You asked: Is there anything else it could be? Of course it can be many things. But you can't suspect anything until a certain symptom reoccurs at least a few times and preferably for a few weeks. One time incidents doesn't mean anything. They happen.

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Well i think u should see a doctor cause that is not good it could be a siriouse medical condition caused by over working ur body while sick a simular thing happen to me and it hasnt gone away since. now i have trouble taking deep breaths nd i get light headed. so make sure its nuthing dangerous

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It sounds like a panic attack. Some other reasons why you could be experiencing difficulty breathing are as a result of an allergy or chest congestion. You need to talk to a doctor so that the probable cause can be diagnosed and treatment offered. Read on from http://www.webmd.com/lung/breathing-problems-causes-tests-treatments.

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