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Forum Name: Psychiatric Topics

Question: Mysterious pain that I can't explain.


 skycoyote - Tue Aug 17, 2010 2:33 am

When I was 14, I moved from California to Virginia right before entering highschool, I somehow found my way into the "goth/emo" scene. I was a very depressed and lonely kid for the first few years.

Thats when I started to notice that everytime I was depressed (I wasn't always surprisingly) the upper left part of my chest would start to hurt (I kinda considered that normal) but it soon followed by the pain traveling down my left arm, up to my hand. Now it always felt like either a tendril-like sensation wrapping itself down my arm and gripping my nerves or cold fire running through my veins(kinda varied depending how down I was), which in turn made being depressed even more depressing and pathetic.

I couldn't figure out why that happened. I even asked a few friends who had never experienced anything like that when they were depressed. So I kinda just went with it.

After a few more years of that business, I grew out of the "goth/emo" phase and was a very happy an cheerful person. But sometimes I'd get a random spout of depression that lasted a day or two, which ofcourse was accompanied by the pain in my arm. This pain has been so intense at times where it has brought me to tears even after taking some painkillers (recommended doses ofcourse).

Now present day, 21 now. Haven't had the problem arise for more then a few months. Until last night. I finally got fed up with this problem and I am now seeking some help on what is causing this specifically and how to fix it.
 Faye Lang, RN, MSW - Mon Aug 23, 2010 2:24 pm

Hi -

Chest pain is fairly common with feelings of anxiety and does happen with depression; and it may be accompanied by parasthesias, which are sensations of numbness, tingling, or burning in the extremities. It's a little unusual to have it happen in only one arm, and at the intensity that you describe. It may be an aberration of your nervous system, but something that intense probably should be evaluated by your doctor, to be sure there are no other contributing causes. Potential causes could be related to your cardiovascular system structure or function, ulnar nerve function, or tension-induced pressure on nerves in your neck, among other things. Since it is a transitory occurrence, it's not likely to be a systemic condition. If the medical evaluation doesn't find any physical contributors, you might consider a psychological consultation to help identify the stressors that trigger your episodes of depression.

I hope this information is helpful. Please let me know what you find out. Good luck to you.

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