Hi all! I am a 22 yr. old female & I have been having chest pain for almost a year & a half now. I am having a hard time believing that it is anxiety. I have chest pain everyday, but it is not constant. It is more like little pains that come & go all day. It usuall hurts jus below my left breast just left of center. I have had a doctor check me out (echo, ekg, 24 hr. holter monitor) & said everything looked good. My ekg came back abnormal, but he said this could be due to my heart beating so fast from the anxiety. My questions are:
1) Does the length of time this has been going on rule out heart problems? If this has been going on for over a year, if it was my heart wouldn't I have known by now?
2) During the time that this has been going on, I have been pregnant & had a baby (5months old). If it were a heart problem would it have been exagerated by the pregnancy given the fact that your heart has to work so much harder due to the extra blood it is pumping while you are pregnant?
Just a few things that I have been wondering about. Thanks in advance for any help with this.
Well I think that you having specific tests done regarding your heart does say a lot. The doctors probably have ruled out specific problems. Now on the other hand, why are you having tachycardia (fast heart beat), could this all be from anxiety? Could be. At the same time, have you had other blood tests done such as thyroid tests? Thyroid problems can cause all kinds of interesting changes in what goes on with your body including anxiety. As well, the doctor may have ruled out heart problems but the pain you mention can also be esophogus/stomach related. Any kind of irritation or even acid reflux can (and does and very well could be whats going on for you) cause pain to the left of as well as right side of sternum. Some people have gone to the er thinking they were having a heart attach when actually they were having severe acid reflux. These sensations can and do cause anxiety as well. Dont be let down that your doctor hasnt found the answer...and remember there are plenty of other doctors out there that may be better listeners. When you find the right one, stick with that doctor so that that doc knows your physical history and knows you. Sometimes you have to drop a doctor and move on to one that better suits you. Has your doctor ever considered that what you are experiencing could be stomach related? Has he/she tried prevacid,protonix or nexium for you? Has your doctor ever mentioned referring you to a GI specialist? These are just some answers that I could come up with at the top of my head. I too suffer from anxiety, but the truth is whether its mental or not....it could very well be a physical symptom that is being left untreated. Hey, good luck and let me know what you think of this post and some of the questions I brought up for you.
Hi Woodfaery! Thank you for your suggestions. I am a little skeptical of the stomach theory just because I don't have any other symptoms of any thing wrong with my stomach. I have thought many times about my thyroid though. Since I had the baby 5 months ago I have not lost any weight (I weight the same as I did when I left the hospital). I am normally about 120 lbs. & now am 170 lbs. I lost my weight very quickly after my first child. I also have some of the other symptoms, but they seem to be the strange symptoms that you hear of & not the most obvious ones. I know that I need to go get tested, but I just haven't taken the time to do it yet. On my rational days I can convince myself that the pain is not my heart, but on my anxious days I'm convinced that it IS my heart. I'm just tired of feeling lousy all the time.