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Old 08-23-2012, 06:45 PM   #1
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Chest/Breathing Tightness

Looking for a second opinion maybe or someone who has had the same experience. This has been on going for awhile now and the symptoms seem to change every few months not sure if they're related or not.
First about a year ago, whether this has anything to do with it or not, I did what many dumb young 21 year olds do and over drank pretty badly. I vomited 4-5 times throughout the night and neglected to hydrate with water until morning. I felt dizzy and a few times felt like I was going to pass out which was very scary to me as I never experienced this before. I let this go as the symptoms seemed to get less and less for a few months. Maybe 3-4 months later I was having immense trouble breathing out of my nose and had to sleep with mouth open which doesn't work after awhile, went to the UC place that is part of the local hospital and got some nasal spray and allegra. Worked great, but gave me horrible heartburn/possibly acid reflux as I now realize. I ended up having an ambulance called one morning because I thought I was having a heart attack. They came checked vitals and said we can take you but you should just see your doctor. Did so, ran ekg/blood test/x rays all came back negative. Had a halter monitor, negative. So I lived with this for awhile.
About a month ago I went back to UC because I had been getting a little bit of chest tightness and discomfort. They ended up giving me neproxen which I opted to stop taking after 2 days because my legs were going numb while I was driving. The tightness was bearable and wasn't really ever there for but a minute maybe.
On to the now, I have been feeling as if I was having the bad heartburn again so I had been popping Pepcid AC chalk tabs about twice a day and it seemed to help, one thing lingered however, a pain in my left side right under the ribcage. It was again bearable and I thought it may just be a pulled muscle so I let it go. I went to the UC center again for chest tightness and explained that I was getting a good bit of heartburn/acid reflux (if I didn't take the pepcid AC tabs I would feel as if I had to burp and I'd get acid in the back of my mouth instead). They gave me 20mg omprazole which seemed to help for the acidity. This was about a week ago, which brings me to where I am absolutely struggling now. I still get the have to burp feeling, and fluid/solids(?) coming back up even with the omprazole, which I could live with, it lost the acidic value it seemed but is still happening. I was at the UC yesterday and explained and they want me to get a UGI test which I am fine with I'll take anything that's going to get me better, but this is 5 days away that they are going to do it . In the meantime I'm left with the reflux still happening and the worst thing of all, which has had me basically bed ridden, the chest tightness. It seems to be most apparent when I am standing and the best way I can describe it is it feels like it's constricting anything on my left side, including my breathing. Also occasionally I get what feels like shooting pains in my left chest area but these seem to subside quickly. However all my ekg's have come up fine so they have ruled out heart problems. At this point I am taking off work to just lay in bed because I just do not want to get up and feel the chest tightness because it just feels like one of the scariest things I've ever felt personally.
I'm debating going to the UC again tomorrow and expressing my concern and how this is starting to feel like it's ruling my life and I guess just asking what anyone else thinks or would do. I'm really at my wits end with this sorry for the story book and thanks in advance for any advice.

 
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Old 08-23-2012, 08:40 PM   #2
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Re: Chest/Breathing Tightness

It might be worth talking to a doctor about again. You are on a fairly low dosage of PPI's so there are other options out there for you.
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Old 08-23-2012, 09:34 PM   #3
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Re: Chest/Breathing Tightness

Yeah I guess they're waiting for the results from my scheduled ugi test to proceed with my reflux, this chest thing is killing me though, wondering if it's may just be/be exaggerated by anxiety =/.

 
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:12 PM   #4
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Re: Chest/Breathing Tightness

Yes, acid reflux can cause chest tightness. Most of the time, it's more uncomfortable than dangerous, luckily. Lying down might not help, since it lets the acid move up more easily, but if you must lie down, the left side is probably the best position to lie in, as it minimizes reflux.

Yes, anxiety can make it worse, or at least make it feel worse. Many folks with this problem, especially younger folks, find a complicated interaction between stress and the physical issue which can be hard to sort out. It might help to find some unrelated activity to occupy yourself with, even just going for a short walk.

 
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Old 08-24-2012, 06:02 AM   #5
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Re: Chest/Breathing Tightness

Yeah I've been lying flat on my stomach or on my left side and it seems to mask the tightness for me. I've had clogged nasal region since it started to get bad for me and I think that may be exacerbating the tightness too. Took a zyrtec and helped when I first went to sleep probably gonna call the dr office and see if it's ok to take an allegra/ see if they can do anything else for me when they open up cause I just woke up and I'm all stuffed up again. Was planning on trying to go to work today but I don't know now. I have tried jogging on the treadmill for a few minutes the past few days which seems to make me notice the tightness less while I'm doing it but shortly after I seem to focus on it again as it just doesn't fade for me . Thank you all for the input.

 
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Old 08-24-2012, 09:51 AM   #6
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Re: Chest/Breathing Tightness

The fact that it seems to get better when you exercise is a sign that you probably don't have significant lung restriction, and that part of it may really be anxiety. When I'm having asthma issues, I generally feel much worse when I try to exercise.

For now, distraction, distraction, distraction. Try getting together with some friends. Watch what you eat and drink, of course, (some roast chicken and steamed veggies instead of pizza and soda), but get out of the house and do something fun.

 
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Old 08-24-2012, 06:42 PM   #7
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Re: Chest/Breathing Tightness

Yeah I've only been drinking water for a few months now and when I have soda it's caffeine free. Eating habits I admit are not good, fast food during the week as I drive half the time for my job and get lazy with packing. I usually try to get subway so it's halfway decent health-wise ha.
I think I'm coming down with a cold or something in August now on top of all this =/ I tried an Allegra D this morning and a tsp of Robitussin this evening with mediocre results. Probably go to the UC again to get a suggestion and see if I can get them to bump my UGI test to monday or something ugh. I'd rather work 24hr days than feel like this.

 
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Old 08-25-2012, 12:17 PM   #8
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Re: Chest/Breathing Tightness

Some years ago when I received the gift of acid reflux I had the same symtoms you had the chest pain and tightness was of course the worse. My only advice is you haven't had a heart attack yet and probably won't it just getting your head to understand that this is not your heart but something else reflux I'm 40 years old and have had this for sooooo long now it still catches my off guard sometimes but luckily I have had ever test under the sun so it's not my heart and I've had the UGI many times over the years. As for the nose stuffiness I hate that sometimes I get it sometimes I don't it's like a game when you wake up in the morning will I be plugged up or not?Anxiety is a horrible thing and will make things much worse to the point where you can't take it anymore and the only cure is a doctor or ER visit just to tell you what you already know it brings back some very not so found memories.PPI take so e getting use to also some times you need a double does of it like twice a day to co trol it sometimes one a day will work when you feel it getting worse it's generally time to up you does then if you want go back down when it has gotten under control. Try to get back to work and try to push through the day it's better to stay busy this will help a lot see you doctor if you need once ever month at first if you need so that way you have a set day it can sometimes help with the anxiety good luck your not alone type and talk about it will help a lot.

 
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Old 08-25-2012, 12:31 PM   #9
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Re: Chest/Breathing Tightness

Yea they've done 2 chest xrays and 3 ekg's and a holter and nothing out of ordinary they say and my bp is always spot so I guess it's not my heart but it's so hard to not think of that when you're tight like that in the chest. I almost called 911 last night cause I woke up and couldn't breathe/checked my pulse (idk why but I do this all the time and should probably let it alone) then freaked out and my heart was pounding so hard. Finally sat myself down and got over it in a few seconds. Going later today to try and get the breathing checked out cause it seems to be somewhat in sync with my tightness if I try to breathe through my nose that's clogged on one side as opposed to breathing out of my mouth which seems to alleviate a bit, at least in my head ha.
Thanks for your experience I'm slowly trying to ignore and look past it so hard though.

 
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Old 08-25-2012, 03:45 PM   #10
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Re: Chest/Breathing Tightness

I also smoked for 23 years so when I first had the breathing issue of course I thought it was from that.so I quit that 3 years ago didn't help.the tightness the pains once you get them under control just stay on that same schedule to keep it that away.The breathing I was told was from acid coming up going into your lungs that when my GI suggested the wedge pillow which really didn't seem to help that much what will help is no food or caffeinated drinks or alcohol two to three ours before bed even if your starving just chug some liquids to fill the void for me when I had the pains it would last on and off for hours after eating also if I to this day over eat the food come back up on me which is gross but not so much anymore.the chest tightness I was told from my throat being inflammed and wouldn't go away until that was under control it's like everything you eat just sits in your chest/throat yogurt is good for soothing your throat and settling down your stomach also. Good luck hang in there

 
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Old 08-25-2012, 04:45 PM   #11
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Re: Chest/Breathing Tightness

Yeah I've pretty much given up all my bad habits because of this all it's not worth that to feel like this. Only thing I do a few times a day is use an electronic cigarette just a habit I got into going to bars.
Just got back and went from feeling like I was going to pass out to hopeful again =/. They gave me a 5 day dose of Hydroxyzine which they said has an antihistamine in it along with some anxiety relief so I'll give it a try here and hope I can get some relief.

 
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Old 08-26-2012, 03:20 PM   #12
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Re: Chest/Breathing Tightness

Keep in mind, e-cigs may be gentler on the lungs, but it's the nicotine that worsens reflux, so even the e-cigs can trigger it.

Hydroxyzine is a good medicine, though, it really helps my allergies.

 
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Old 08-26-2012, 04:55 PM   #13
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Re: Chest/Breathing Tightness

Yea I'm also wondering if the PG in the juice is contributing to the discomfort also. I've been trying to use it less and less here too =/.

 
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Old 08-26-2012, 05:42 PM   #14
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Re: Chest/Breathing Tightness

Do you guys who have been diagnosed have body pains in the morning when you get up. I seem to have pain every morning on my left side from my side below my ribs up to my chest. Seems to dissipate when I get up and move around. I mentioned it to the doc but they didn't seem to think anything of it.

 
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Old 08-28-2012, 07:30 AM   #15
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Re: Chest/Breathing Tightness

Well test went ok. Gave me the crystals and I instantly had to burp of course then shoved the thick barium at me and thought I was going to puke ha. Gonna call my PCP and schedule an appt for tomorrow hopefully to discuss and hopefully resolve.

 
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