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Forum Name: Cardiology Symptoms

Question: Pain - Help is appreciated

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 koopa - Tue Dec 12, 2006 1:49 am

I am a 22 year old male and have no family history because I was adopted. I had a heart murmur when I was VERY young and has long since passed. No past surgeries. No medications.

From time to time I get chest pain, on my left side and ONLY when I take deep breaths. I'm able to breath normally, but if I inhale too deeply I get a sharp piercing pain. Sometimes I panic, but recently I've been just trying to stay calm, and it always passes after a few minutes. Is there any reason for this cause? (probably more than one). Any information is greatly appreciated.
 Dr. Chan Lowe - Tue Dec 12, 2006 12:49 pm

User avatar First the reassuring thing-pain that is worse with a deep breath is not related to the heart, so this is not heart attack pain. The pain you describe is consistent with a few different things. First, pleurisy can cause such pain. The pleura are the linings of the lungs, heart, inside chest wall, etc. Occasionally an area may get inflamed producing pain. It is worse with deep breaths because it causes the inflamed pleura to be moved. Generally this will heal on its own, although anti-inflammatory medications can be helpful if severe.

A second possibility is a syndrome called Precordial Catch Syndrome. This can cause sudden, stabbing feeling pain with deep breaths, as if the diaphragm or lung is caught on something. This also tends to resolve on its own.

Please keep in mind that I am not examining you and making an accurate diagnosis over the internet is nearly impossible. As such, if the pain is worsening or not getting better you should have a true evaluation.

Hope this helps.
 koopa - Wed Dec 13, 2006 5:12 am

It definitely does help. I know that it could be a number of issues but reassurance that I'm not progressively getting closer to a heart attack surely puts my mind at ease. Thanks so much for the information.

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