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Date of last update: 10/20/2017.

Forum Name: Cardiology Symptoms

Question: Young adult with chest and arm pain

 gbusche - Sat Jan 08, 2005 7:01 pm

hi, i am an 18 year old male who does not smoke, has no family history of heart trouble, and is in fairly good shape. i am active and run track. the other day i experienced what felt like a tight clenching in my lower chest, a bit left-off center, and just under my left pectoral. it lasted for a few minutes, and if i beathed deeply during it, it felt like a muscle in that area would pulse and clench tightly. after that went away, ive been expreincing a constant dull ache in that area wihch sometimes gets a little sharper, but not as bad as when it first happened. i also temporarily feel the same kind of pain in other areas of my chest, including the right side and sometimes a little bit high up, and sometimes wrapping around to my back from the left. my left shoulder and arm also feel weak and slightly sore and slightly numb,, and i feel like i have tightness or cramps in my upper arm and hand. exercize doesn't seem to make it substantially worse, in fact, the problems in my arm seem worse when i am lying down or sitting than they do when i am standing or walking or jogging. the first attack of pain happened during track practice, but it was not a terribly hard practice and at the time i was not out of breath.
im worried that this is something serious, but it seems unlikely given my background that i am having trouble with my heart, so maybe it is a nerve thing or just a tight muscle. i have been under moderate but not severe stress and that has never caused me problems like this before. any thoughts on what my problem is or what i should do?
 Dr. Yasser Mokhtar - Tue Jan 11, 2005 8:38 pm

User avatar Dear gbusche,

Not having any risk factors for coronary disease in addition to the characteristics of the discomofort being atypical (as compared to the characteristics of the pain caused by coronary disease) makes the probability of this pain being of coronary origin very slim.

Obviously, I cannot rule out something as dangerous as a cardiac cause for your chest pain over the internet, but according to your description this chest pain is probably not secondary to coronary disease.

This sounds to me more of a musculoskeletal pain related to the muscles, ligaments, tendons and may be bones.

My suggestion is to use an over the counter pain reliever and have some rest and see what the results will be.

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

Yasser Mokhtar, M.D.

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