Firstly thank you to the creators of this forum and secondly thanks to whomever gets through my huge post...
A bit of background on me. I have had anxiety symptoms since i was 17 ( im now 31 ) my symptoms have always been mental based - What I mean is i have never experienced any physical symptoms with my anxiety, only flight of flight, feeling that i was about to die, de-realization etc ... I dealt with these symptoms myself and was free of them for around 6 years.
Over the past 2 years I have had a series of relationships with people that had either anxiety or depression or both ... I recently had 2 bad relationships with one involving the selling of my house... I have been working from home in my own business as a website developer for the past year and am very isolated and don't get very much interaction with people.
I saw the doctor about 6 months ago with strange feelings, feeling sad and overwhelmed and a sensation of crawling up my neck... He refereed me to a psychologist whom i have been seeing now for 6 months... She has told me I seem to have high anxiety but not depression.
About 2 months ago I was very stressed and unhappy with the relationship I was in.
About the same time I went to the dr for constant clearing of my throat and heaviness on my chest headaches and a saw jaw. He prescribed me an inhaler for he chest and nasonex nasal spray. He said I had a post nasal drip and also said i had TMJ ( Temporal mandibular Joint Dysfunction ).
About 1 week after this I got tinnitus ( ringing in my ears ) i left it for about a week, but then it really started to get to me and I had a very fast decline down into strong intense anxiety, as this ringing would not stop and was driving me mad.
I got back in to see my dr and he sent me for a CT scan. I was very scared and was getting palpitations whilst they performed the first scan... After the first scan the radiologist came in and said I needed to stay still because he needed to take a second scan to confirm the findings of the first scan... i asked him if he had found anything, he replied that he needed to consult the dr.... When he returned he injected me with a contrast dye and then asked me if I was having headaches or ringing in my ears... My heart rate went through the roof as i replied....Yes I have ringing in my ears...Why did you find something that would cause that?
He answered that i would need to consult my dr.... He then proceeded with the second scan. I was almost on the verge of passing out or running out of there screaming my anxiety was so high.... I was due to get my results the next day so I also also organized my dr appointment to co-inside with the results being available.
The next 24hr was the most terrified i have ever been, I constantly said to myself "Why would the radiologist ask me if I had ringing in my ears unless he found something that causes it?" I researched every type of tumor and tried to rule out or include any types it could have been ... I called a lifeline support center because I could not cope, I was pacing up and down my drive way for hours mumbling to myself and imagining what was to come.... was it fatal, would i come out of it with server disabilities ... Would I live to see my son grow up! it felt brutal.
The time came to see the dr... I walked in and he asked how I was - I replied "Well I m sure something was found in the CT scan I just hope the prognosis is good". he said "hmmmm" as he proceeded to explain the CT scans to me... At the end he said "There is nothing there! no tumor or cancer - nothing, your fine"... I could not believe it. I did convey the experience I had with the radiologist, the dr though the radiologist should not have asked me anything. But i was fine!
The news getting the all clear was a big relief ... I said but, i still have ringing in my ears. He then sent me to a hearing specialist ... I had hearing test and it was great, she did notice that my Eustachian Tubes were blocked and this could cause the ringing in my ears ...
Over the next week or two, although i was given the all clear, to my surprise my anxiety did not go down alot, although i did notice it was slowly coming down... But i found myself confused about how to live a normal life ... after facing my own mortality I was so fearful of ever being in that situation again ... I had developed a fear of anything health related. I wasn't sure how to just get up and go about my day without thinking of anything health related.
About 2 weeks after, i was not feeling to bad and was starting to return to a fairly normal existence, and my tinnitus seemed to be going away or my awareness of it was diminished.
One night I woke up with a sharp pain in my chest, like i had pulled a muscle or something, it lasted for about 2mins perhaps.... I was not overly concerned, but saw my dr anyway... She said it was something to take seriously, and she wanted to give me a blood test, ecg, and stress test .....
I did all of these but did not have an appointment until the following week in which I would find out the results.. In that time I googled my symptoms and found angina, heart disease, lung cancer and numerous other conditions that could cause my symptoms ... My worst fears were back, I was back in that place. I did however manage it a lot better. I got the results from my stress test early and checked them out myself and they were fine. I still had 3 days before my next appointment. Since then i did not have any more sharp pains as i did the first time, only dull aching pain.
Whilst continuing my google search and finding a lot of bad things that could be wrong with me i stumbled across TOS ( Thoracic Outlet Syndrome ). It seemed to answer so many of the things that I was experiencing.... Chest pain similar to angina, pinky finger sometimes going a bit numb, chest discomfort, neck shoulder pain and a few others. One of the causes listed for TOS was repetitive tasks such as being at the pc or hours, which of course is my job description.
I started doing some of the stretches that were recommended. When I breathe in normal i have no discomfort, but I found when I stretch my head to my right shoulder then breath in deeply to my chest, i experienced the same/similar dull ache in my chest.
Chiropractors, on several occasions over the last few years have given me stretches for my neck as it seemed to be quite tight. I did not really follow the advice.
Through out the days prior to my dr appointment to find out my blood test results, when my attention was on other things, it would seem that I did not have any or only had very slight chest discomfort, but when my attention went to it, it would start to increase.
I then went to my dr appointment to find my results... ecg, stress test perfect... all blood work was perfect also.... I then spoke to the dr about TOS, she was not familiar and consulted a colleague, he was of the opinion that it would not be TOS but, she googled it ( possibly to humor me ) and said it looked like it fit my symptoms some what. They have now booked me in for chiropractor and physiotherapy for the tightness that seems to be causing the chest issue.
After leaving the dr, I felt better and thought i had found a good answer, i wasn't feeling any discomfort and felt happy.... I then went out to the shops for something and a strange thought and feeling came over me.... I started thinking, ok so what will be next - whats the next big health issue going to be. I found myself wanting to get the chest pains back because they were familiar and new symptoms would mean I would have to go through the diagnostic process again.
Within 2 hrs of this I then had chest discomfort again - this time it was more centralized in my chest - it did not effect my breathing - but throughout this entire experience lately I have been yawning and breathing deeply to see if there was any pain or discomfort....
As i sit here now writing this I feel relatively fine....
My questions to every one is this .... is all of this anxiety, could anxiety be the cause of these chest pains.
I feel as though i am acutely aware of any change in my body feeling, even a zipper moving can spark my attention. Im finding that this is very tiring and draining feeling like this. How do you break the cycle? are the bad relationships and stress a factor?
Or do i have a health concern - that needs to be addressed, as i said ecg, stress test and blood tests all good.. Im perfect weight for my height and a non smoker.
Thank you very much for taking the time to read this.
i know how your feeling.....believe me.all this is new to me too.i was dignoised with conversion disorder on june 3oth and have had it since may 27th 2010.its everyday fight to convince myself that the headaches are not real,and other health things.i was having symtoms of strokes,ms ,and seizures.once they told me i tell myself everyday that this isn't real and the symtom finally goes away.my accent even changes that one is hard to fight but i do.they say its brought on my situational stress.did you have anything that was very stressful happen to you?i hope i helped.... kelly
Last edited by ms_mod; 07-09-2010 at 12:44 PM.
Reason: Removed unnecessary quote. Ms_Mod
Thanks kelly - its amazing what your thoughts can do to your psysical body, I find i am able to get warm sensations all over just by thinking about it.. I did have a further look into conversion disorder and im not sure how well its fits... But I am continuing to look into it, I dont have any signs of seizure or anything just the paranoia about my health.... I actually found something called FHP Forward Head Position which causes all of my symptoms, Sore chest, Headaches, TMJ etc - so I am looking into that as well.....
I've also been taking some SAMe and Vit B this seems to be helping my mood and hench helping the anxiety and reducing the awerness of my symptoms....
Thanks very much for the help and I hope we both can find some relief - I will post any more developments.
Last edited by ms_mod; 07-11-2010 at 09:08 AM.
Reason: Removed unnecessary quote. Ms_Mod
Yes, it definately sounds like you are having anxiety or panic attacks. They can happen to perfectly healthy people. Sypmtoms can vary from chest pains, racing heart rate, dizziness, literally feeling like you may die, numbness in hands, arms, feet, legs; pacing, unable to sit/stand still, jumpiness....there are so many symptoms. Generally, if you are overwhelmed or already have panick disorder which can be brought on by stress, a traumatic life event(then resurface from any slight amount of stress), or anything really.
As far as the chest pains=tos? Those chest pains would be above the breasts and be swollen and very painful/tender to the touch, neck pain and all that other stuff could be tos or anxiety.
For anxiety, clonpin(clonazepam) is great it is long lasting something you can take as needed or as a regular dose. I am currently dealing with being out of work, money problems, having to move, death of family member, just being diagnosed with lifelong dishabilitating disease, and other issues. I started taking clonpin because drs said it would help with anxiety which would keep pain down. I think its amazing. I still am stressed out but no longer get that really sharp pain that feels like a heart attack, feeling ofneeding to escape, (I actually had a very similar mri situation-had mri after car accident and am increibly claustrophobic but didn't have a ride so was gonna try to just get thru without meds, was doing ok in tunnel, then (as I was asleep) they pulled me out of tunnel&injected me with dye without telling me at all, so as I was dealing with trying to ignore claustrophobia, the injection set me off and I started kicking and asking to get out so I ruined the mri. So even tho 1 momemt you may be feeling fine, although there is a high amount of stress in your life, anyone word, thought or action can set off a terrifying panic attack.
There are other meds to take as needed-xanaz and others, but they knock out out& its difficult to function.
As far as tos concern, if you haven't seen anyone for it yet, I would recommend it. The earlier it is tested, caugh&fixed, the higher recovery rate. Would recommmend seeing neurologist or vascular surgeon or seeing your family dr for a referral.
Hope you feel better! Sorry this got kinda long, but anxiety can show its face in many forms and appear to be something else, but the thought that you are somehow going to die is one of the main culprits of those nasty anxiety attacks.
Hope this helped a bit!
Last edited by ms_mod; 09-05-2010 at 07:13 AM.
Reason: Replaced text message, chat room letters with the proper words as per the posting rules. Ms_Mod
It does sound like you have a lot of anxiety issues. A friend of mine was going through a divorce. He was having chest pains really bad and a ambulance was called. It wasn't a heart attack, it was from too much stress. Have you looked at the symptoms of Fibromyalgia? You can have pain anywhere and also have issues with the jaw. I had to have a stress test a few years ago because of arm pain. Nothing was found. I have depression, anxiety, and TMJ. I also have insomnia. I was recent told by my doctor that he's sure I have Fibromyalgia. You can have anxiety from just being frustrated about the pain you have.