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Forum Name: Chest symptoms

Question: Sore CHest, neck and shoulder


 kieranb - Sun Dec 17, 2006 11:22 pm

Hi there,
I am a 20 year old male smoker in good shape and for the last 3 weeks, on and off, I have been getting miniature sudden pains in my left center chest and shoulder/neck.

The pain feels like it is in my heart and is wuite a sharp pain whilst the pain in ym shoulder ( mainly my blade ) is dull and aching as is my neck pain. Whilst this pain is occuring I also feel pressure on my chest of a definitely recognizable degree.

I went to my doctor and got a blood test and their policy is not to call back unless urgent or severe.

I also got my pulse etc checked and she said nothing was wrong.

I am getting anxious and I am very worried.

Please advise me of what to do here so I can rest at ease.
 Dr. Safaa Mahmoud - Tue Dec 19, 2006 3:28 pm

User avatar Hello,
The chest contains many organs, like the heart, lungs with its pleural covering, esophagus, muscles, ribs, tendons, and nerves. They all can be the source of the pain felt in the chest.

Your symptoms may be due to one of these causes:

- Pleurisy is an inflammation of the pleura, which is a double-layered membrane covers the lungs separating it from the rib cage. Viral infections like flu, are the most common cause of Pleurisy. The pain is felt as sharp pain which get worse by Coughing, sneezing, moving and deep breathing. auscultation of the chest shows a characteristic sound known as pleural rub.

-Overexertion of the chest wall muscles (e.g.excess coughing)or their inflammation as a part of viral infection like flu or cold results also in Chest pain, the pain is usually aggravated with certain moves and is usually associated with tenderness over the affected muscles. Pain due to rib or chest wall bone disease is also another cause of Chest pain.

-Sometimes chest pain is not originating from the chest itself, instead it is due to problems in the digestive tract. These problems include gastritis and gastric ulcer, gall bladder disease, GERD.
People with GERD present with severe pain and discomfort in the chest in the morning. Others may experience a feeling like tightness in the throat, neck pain, dry Cough and Shortness of breath similar to Asthma.

Stress and smoking can increase these symptoms. Certain foods as well are known to aggravate the condition, and you better avoid them.

-Psychological or emotional stress and Anxiety, in these cases the diagnosis is made by exclusion of other causes.

-Cardiac causes, should be excluded in any case of Chest pain although it is likely to be in your case (young age, non typical symptoms).

Investigations include:
ECG
X-ray chest

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