Encyclopedia Symptoms / / May 07, 2016
Alternative names: pressure in the chest, chest discomfort, chest pain
Pain or discomfort in the chest or chest - pain that one feels at any point along the chest, between the neck and the upper part of the abdomen.
Many people with chest pain fear experiencing a heart attack.However, there are many possible causes of chest pain.Some causes are not dangerous to human health, while other reasons - are serious and even life threatening.Any organ or tissue in the breast can be a source of pain, including - the heart, lungs, esophagus, muscle, ribs, tendons or nerves.Pain can also spread to the chest from the neck, abdomen and back.
reasons chest pain
Problems of the heart or blood vessels that can cause chest pain:
- angina or a heart attack.Chest pain - the most common symptom that feels like tightness, heavy pressure, squeezing, crushing or pain.The pain may spread to the arms, shoulders, or back teeth;
- rupture in the wall of the aorta (large blood vessel that receives blood from the
- edema (inflammation) of the pericardium that surrounds the heart (pericarditis), causing pain in the center of the chest.
Lung problems that can cause chest pain:
- a blood clot in the lungs (pulmonary embolism);
- a collapsed lung (pneumothorax);
- Pneumonia - causes a sharp pain in the chest, which often gets worse when the patient takes a deep breath or cough;
- swelling of the mucous membrane around the lungs (pleurisy) - can cause acute chest pain that often gets worse when the patient takes a deep breath or cough.
Other causes of chest pain:
- panic attack, which often occurs with rapid breathing;
- inflammation in the ribs join the breast bone or sternum;
- shingles, which causes a sharp pain and tingling on one side, which extends from the chest to the back and may cause a rash;
- tension of muscles and tendons between the ribs.
Chest pain may also be associated with the following digestive system problems:
- spasm or narrowing of the esophagus (the tube that carries food from the mouth to the stomach);
- gallstones - cause pain, which increases after a meal (usually - fatty foods);
- heartburn or GERD;
- gastric ulcer or gastritis (burning pain occurs if an empty stomach, and pain can not be at all, when a person eats).
In children, most cases of chest pain does not cause heart.
Diagnosis and treatment
Most people do best to consult with your doctor to find out and understand the causes of chest pain, and what measures should be taken in the event of attacks at home.
patient should contact their doctor if:
- he had a sudden crushing, squeezing, tightening, or pressure in the chest;
- the pain spreads (radiates) to the jaw, left arm or between the shoulder blades;
- patient - nausea, dizziness, sweating, palpitations or shortness of breath;
- angina and chest discomfort suddenly became more intense, caused by the easy operation, and they last longer than usual;
- angina symptoms occur even at rest;
- there is a sudden, sharp pain in the chest, with shortness of breath, especially after a long trip, or bed rest (for example, after surgery), or otherwise, loss of motion, especially if one leg is swollen, and she was more swollen than the other (thisIt can be a blood clot, a portion of which broke away and moved to the lungs).
risk of heart attack increases if:
- the patient has a family history of heart disease;
- patient smokes or is overweight;
- patient - high cholesterol, high blood pressure or diabetes.
patient should contact their doctor if:
- he has a high fever or cough with yellow-green mucus;
- he has a heavy and not passing pain in the chest;
- he had problems with swallowing;
- chest pain lasts longer than 3-5 days.
doctor may ask questions such as:
- Is there pain between the shoulder blades, under the breastbone or the location of the pain - no change;
- if only one side of the pain;
- as if the patient described the pain: serious, with a break, without a gap, a sharp, stabbing, burning, compressing, rigid, oppressive, as crushing, aching, dull, heavy, etc .;
- whether the pain comes on suddenly;
- whether the pain occurs at the same time every day;
- whether the pain becomes better (weakened) or worse (amplified) when the patient is moved;
- whether the pain can occur when you click on the chest of the patient;
- if the pain is getting worse - how long it lasts;
- whether the pain goes from the breast - in the shoulder, arm, neck, jaw, or back;
- whether the pain diminishes or gets worse when the patient is breathing deeply, coughing, eating, bends, bends;
- weakens or intensifies the pain, when the patient is working and after he had rested, if it disappears completely - or only decreases;
- weakens any pain after taking nitroglycerin, after eating or taking antacids after belching, etc .;
- which still have symptoms of the patient.
test types, which takes place the patient depends on the cause of the pain and of what the patient still has medical problems or risk factors.