Hello HealthBoards community. Alot of reading follows... but I wanted to describe my situation as best as possible
Thank you for your time.
I have been reading through your forum the last couple of days and found it of great interest as there seem to be many other people who have experienced or are experiencing similar symptoms/sensations as I currently am.
So here's my story... I kept a sort of journal but will only list the key points.
I am a 21 year old male living in Mid Wales in the United Kingdom. I am happily married with a two year old daughter and am currently a full-time college student (the only minute source of stress in my life). My wife works part time and supports the family whilst I complete my studies.
On Sunday, June 6th I was woken up by chest pains this morning around 5:30am. I sat awake until 6am enduring them as I have had the pains before and had them previously checked up at the doctors’ months and months ago (who informed me I was healthy and had nothing to worry about).
The pain had been diagnosed as acid build up and I was prescribed a bottle of Gaviscon to hopefully remedy it somewhat. It did seem to help a little.
At 6am I was very uncomfortable and decided to wake my wife and made a phone call to the Shrop Doc (Sunday Doctor). I had to carry out a few checks such as pivoting my head around my neck, moving it side-to-side, back and forth and moving my arms in a circular motion to see if any of these movements had any effect upon the pain – they didn’t – which I was told was good. The doctor told me I could come in to the local hospital here in town if I would rather get a look over, which I agreed to at 6:50am.
The pains continued to just after 7am when I went in to get checked out by the Shrop Doc. The doctor said my heart, lungs and oxygen levels were all good and healthy as they should be and gave me some chewable Gaviscon tablets putting it down to possible acid reflux around the chest or musculoskeletal damage. This diagnosis was pretty much the same I had received the first time around. I was relieved to know it was not a health issue relating any of my organs.
Unfortunately things took a turn for the worse. We went to town to get some shopping up at Tesco (supermarket) and on the way home from town (some point after 3pm), the pain returned in double. I let Katie (my wife) know it was back and said it would be alright and I’d just focus on trying to push Vinni (my daughter) home in her chair. I was not panicking and just wanted to get home. I got about 50m further and decided to try out the tests the doctor had made me do over the phone earlier on in the morning – every single one made the inside of my left chest hurt badly, then a pain shot down the inside of my left arm, my whole body went fuzzy (big and numb) and my vision and sound went completely disoriented, my heart beating at an alarming rate... everything was fading and I was terrified - I really thought that was going to be it.
They said it could be one of two things... musculoskeletal damage across my chest which would take a few weeks to heal up or possibly pleurisy on the outer lung that is pushing into my ribs. Either way, I was told to rest for a few weeks and take anti-inflammatories and I should heal up ok.
Tuesday 8th June - Body doesn't seem to have got over it yet as it decided to freak out on me tonight around 8:30pm and have what we think was a panic attack – lasted roughly 20 minutes. Started out as a numb pain around my finger and thumb then passed up over my body into a cold flush which made my face and head all cold and tingly.
Wednesday 9th - We've figured that it was a panic attack initially (on Sunday) from the 2nd encounter last night after doing some reading into the subject online.
I believe it coupled with my already damaged chest creating the worst case scenario effects and making me think I was having a heart attack. Although I am still unsure why I keep getting twinges of pains in my legs/left arm/hand.
Thursday 10th - Much happier today knowing what we are most likely dealing with and again the fact it is not my heart.
My body temperature seems to be a bit better today as well.
Chest is still uncomfortable although seemed to have improved a little this morning. Still getting the odd pain around that area.
I had a minor attack around 8:00pm in the evening – lasted about 10 minutes or so and I went to bed after. Felt it coming on but unfortunately failed to prevent it.
Didn’t sleep whole night – more like closed my eyes every 10 minutes or so for a couple of minutes.
Friday 11th - Slept for a few hours this morning to try and catch up on some of the sleep I had missed the previous night.
Chest pains are hit and miss as usual, also been experiencing those annoying uncomfortable left arm/hand pains and my left knee is killing – existing problem already so nothing to worry about there, but ouch!
I had a minor attack at 10:00pm in the evening which I managed to control in a couple of minutes with the aid of some rescue remedy and steady breathing.
---------------- I then stopped writing this for a couple of weeks as nothing much really happened.
Sunday 4th, July - Decided I best start writing in this thing again as unfortunately haven’t got rid of ‘the thing’ just quite yet... (29th June had a big attack on the train down to Cardiff – ruined my morning and left me with pains randomly twining from my finger tips (left arm) up to my chest and down through my legs to my toes) Intense aching pain only down my ring finger though – 5 minutes later cold flush followed and usual tingling down my arms and body, false ‘need to use the toilet’ feeling also.
Monday 5th, July - Mild chest pains this morning – went to see doctor to talk about all that has happened in the past month – doctor confirmed described symptoms most likely down to anxiety.
I have experienced pain all day in my left arm... not nice.
Tuesday 6th, July - Woke up about 4 and cried for a bit – I hate feeling like this... like I’m falling apart.
Woke up around 7 and had a brief attack (that’s the easiest thing to call them) – cold tingles all over – passed within a few minutes and went back to sleep.
Woke again just past 10 – couldn’t move my right arm or hand at all, also couldn’t feel it at all. Took a minute or two to steadily regain motion... felt blood running around it so assumed I must of fallen asleep on it.
Fingers have been twinging with pain all day. Still not entirely convinced that I am suffering from just anxiety issues – then again, what do I really know about how the brain affects the nervous system? If the pain in my left arm continues I think I might consider going back to the doctor and asking to see a neurologist.
So many stupid questions... do I have carpel tunnel? In either or both arms? I can grip fine though... but I spend a lot of time resting my arms and wrists on a flat surface at the computer every day. Do I have dead arm? I need to stop all this thinking, it’s just making it worse.
Been feeling super aware of my breathing and hyper-sensitive all over.
Also feel really weak, particularly in my legs – I’d like to go do some exercise as I haven’t really done much since the appearance of this whole thing, but to tell the truth I’m kind of scared to.
Used toilet twice this morning (#2) – I haven’t eaten meat (bar fish) since June 6th so maybe food is passing through my system quicker? I think it might be wise to record what and when I eat just in case – also ‘they’ are of normal consistency and of a yellow colour (as they were yesterday) – will keep an eye on this.
18:20 – second attack in an hour.
A bit long winded - but that's the short of my past 2 months.
On Thursday (5th August) I went to the doctors about the pain again as it seems to be getting worse. The doctor checked my blood pressure and heart and confirmed all was normal. I then came back later that day for an ECG - all fine.
I am going back on Friday for more blood tests but I know the results will come back normal already.
I do think I suffer now from panic attacks since the first event but I seem to be able to control them somewhat and really haven't had a 'panic attack' occur in weeks - sometimes the tingles for a second or two but I can stop them.
The thing I can't pin down is the pain. I, like many others spent weeks terrified I was going to drop down dead any second. I'm still here though! I just wish I could get an answer as to what this almost constant pain is I am experiencing every day.
The pain mainly centres around my left arm (sometimes becomes tense and heavy/fat feeling).
- Usually always a pain in the upper inside area where it bends and the muscle you can grab with your hand joining your left pec to your armpit.
- Frequent tingles/pain in left hand/fingers.
- Occasionally pain over the elbow.
- Pain up and down both legs occasionally.
- Pain in toes occasionally.
- Pain in left arm and left chest mirrors or transfers sometimes to right side - including fingertips and arm.
- Occasional pain in the two arteries around my groin.
- Lower left ribs experience a lot of pain.
- Occasional stomach pains/discomfort
- Frequently aware and feel heartbeat
- Occasional flutters in left chest/shortness of breath
- Increased used of toilet (switching to vegge diet cause this? - and the yellow but normal consistency waste?)
- Difficulty sleeping... laying on left-side causes chest to tingle and sometimes general uncomfortable pain... right-side... arm seems to go tingly quicker than it used to.
- Blood circulation a little worse? Can't sit cross legged for to long anymore.
I don't exercise currently, I am around 10 stone (in weight) at 6ft1 - I need to exercise but am terrified something will happen if I purposely get my heart rate up.
I think I've covered as much as I possibly can.
I look forward to hearing back from you all and thanks once again for your time.