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Date of last update: 10/20/2017.

Forum Name: Cardiology Symptoms

Question: Shortness of Breath and episodes of chest pains.

 mikezam - Thu Oct 21, 2004 4:23 pm

I'm going to give a brief medical history. Round the end of 2001, I began suffering from Chronic Urticaria. Fortunately, using anti histamine (TELFAST) medication, controlled my urticaria. I ran various tests and blood work. I made a full blood count, liver function tests, thyroid tests, urine test, etc and everything was within nominal range. After about 2 years, urticaria vanished on its own.
During the period when I had chronic urticaria, I began suffering from episodes of severe chest pain whic sometimes radiated to my left arm, shoulder, arm pit and jaw. I suspected heart problems and visited my GP which suggested I had nothing. After recurring episodes and worsening of symptoms, I decided to visit a specialist. He ordered various tests including FBC, ECG, Stress ECG, Chest X-Ray, Abdominal Ultrasound and Barium Swallow. All results came back good with no abnormalities found. Nowadays I still suffer from episodes of Chest Pains and am even having episodes of shortness of breath. What could be the cause of such symptoms? Sometimes I have chest pain without breathing problems, sometimes I have shortness of breath without chest pain and sometimes I have both. After running all these tests showing no evidence of serious problems, what could be the reason of such symptoms? Could it be a psyhcological problem, stress, panic? Thanks and please help. Sorry for being long.
 Dr. Yasser Mokhtar - Thu Oct 21, 2004 6:07 pm

User avatar Dear Mikezam,

Determination of whether chest pain is of cardiac origin or not depends on risk factors that the patient has for coronary disease and the characteristics of the chest pain itself.

The risk factors for coronary disease are
1. Family history of coronary disease in young family members.
2. Age. Older people are more prone to heart attacks.
3. Being a male.
4. Hypertension.
5. Diabetes.
6. Smoking.
7. High choleterol.
8. Sedentary life style.

So, it looks that you don't have any of these risk factors except being a male. So, most probably the chest pain that you are having is not related to coronary disease.

You never mentioned what the characteristics of the pain that you get are. Characteristics of the pain are also an important factor in determining whether the pain is of coronary origin or not.

But i guess that this a little bit late since you already had all the tests and it is relief that they came back normal.

You have not mentioned whether or not you had an echocardiogram. Sometimes, chest pain can be caused by mitral valve prolapse which is usually detected by echocardiogram. Another cause of chest pain is also neck problems.

Panic attacks can cause chest pain but i usually do not like to attribute symptoms to pschiatric problems till all the other causes have been ruled out.

Thank you very much for using our website and i hope that this information helped.

Yasser Mokhtar, M.D.

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