Exercise intolerance is a condition where the patient is unable to do physical exercise at the level or for the duration that would be expected of someone in his or her general physical condition, or experiences unusually severe post-exercise pain, fatigue, or other negative effects. Exercise intolerance is not a disease or syndrome in and of itself, but a symptom.
Since there are many possible specific reasons why exercise could be inhibited, this is a rather slippery term. For instance, the patient may experience unusual breathlessness (dyspnea), muscle pain (myalgia), or increasing muscle weakness while exercising, or may, after exercise, experience severe headache, nausea, dizziness or extreme fatigue. In most cases, the specific reason that exercise is not tolerated is of considerable significance when trying to isolate the cause down to a specific disease.
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