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Old 01-17-2004, 11:28 AM   #1
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Paranoid29 HB User
Chest Pain

Firstly, excuse my ignorance & apologies to anyone who thinks I'm just a hypocondriac.

I've been suffering from reletively mild chest pains (not constant, but at unrelated times everyday) for the last three weeks ranging from the middle of the chest to the left, right or even towards my back.

I was due to visit the doctor on Friday, but woke to no pain so cancelled appointment. Yesterday however, I suddenly felt a much more intense pain in the right side of my chest (like being jabbed in the ribcage hard with a couple of fingers). This pain has been with me everytime I take a deep breath, swallow or move a certain way since.

I have recently (2 weeks ago) given up 8 or 9 years of smoking including regular joints (helps my insomnia) partly as a result of worrying about the chest pain. I am 29 years old.

I have no other symptoms (coughing, shortness of breath etc) and have plenty of zest & energy.

I appreciate that I should see a doctor but I am working away from home next week so I cannot unless I go to A&E which seems a bit excessive.

Unfortunately, by trying to investigate my symptoms myself I have become paranoid of having lung cancer!

Can anyone help? Its driving me crazy.

 
Old 01-31-2004, 02:18 PM   #2
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butterflytrans HB Userbutterflytrans HB User
Re: Chest Pain

You don't have lung cancer. Most lung cancers are asymptomatic, and appear in people that have a minimum of a 10-15 packyear history of smoking. A packyear is the number of packs you smoke a day times the number of years you've smoked. A ten packyear, then, is a pack a day for 10 years--that's a LOT of cigarettes. That would explain why most people who get lung cancer are over 50.

Chest pain, by the way, is one of the least common symptoms (if there even are any) of lung cancer.

 
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Old 02-03-2004, 08:37 PM   #3
antonia34
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Re: Chest Pain

I had to reply to let you know that my husband age 39 was diagnost with lung cancer 5 months ago. So as you understand age has nothing to do if you have or not have cancer. All so I had spoken with allot of people that they had never smoked and have lung cancer. If you think you have something go check it out. Don't play with you're health. Trust you're god filling, that never let's you down. May god be with you.





Quote:
Originally Posted by butterflytrans
You don't have lung cancer. Most lung cancers are asymptomatic, and appear in people that have a minimum of a 10-15 packyear history of smoking. A packyear is the number of packs you smoke a day times the number of years you've smoked. A ten packyear, then, is a pack a day for 10 years--that's a LOT of cigarettes. That would explain why most people who get lung cancer are over 50.

Chest pain, by the way, is one of the least common symptoms (if there even are any) of lung cancer.

 
Old 02-04-2004, 05:08 AM   #4
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Re: Chest Pain

antonia34, your husband is a rare exception. Age, trust me, is a big factor when thinking about the clinical importance of lung cancer. If every person with chest pain or the "gut feeling" went to get a chest x-ray, the medical profession would be so backlogged, people who really needed the help wouldn't get it. I think it's okay to maybe go to the doctor and get checked out, but getting all sorts of tests is useless. They'll all come up normal, and the patient gets even more nervous.

Maybe your husband didn't smoke, but if you take a close history, you'll find that he has some kind of exposure to one of the lung cancer causing agents other than cigarette smoke (which make up the minority of cases). There is a type of lung cancer which is not associated with smoking, but it is rare, and chances are that is what your husband had if he didn't have any exposures.

Actually, taking a closer look at your message, your husband isn't the exception. He's 39....the earliest lung cancers usually appear in the 40s, though the peak of them are in the 50s and above.

Did your husband smoke?

 
Old 02-07-2004, 08:09 PM   #5
antonia34
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Re: Chest Pain

Hi,

To answer you're question, yes my husband did smoke. He was a havy smoker 3-4 packs a day and all so he was working in construction roofing breathing all the chemicals. When he started having the symptoms he was only 38. He has Small Cell Lung Cancer. None of his family members had any type of cancer. If you want to know anything more please fill free to ask.










QUOTE=butterflytrans]antonia34, your husband is a rare exception. Age, trust me, is a big factor when thinking about the clinical importance of lung cancer. If every person with chest pain or the "gut feeling" went to get a chest x-ray, the medical profession would be so backlogged, people who really needed the help wouldn't get it. I think it's okay to maybe go to the doctor and get checked out, but getting all sorts of tests is useless. They'll all come up normal, and the patient gets even more nervous.

Maybe your husband didn't smoke, but if you take a close history, you'll find that he has some kind of exposure to one of the lung cancer causing agents other than cigarette smoke (which make up the minority of cases). There is a type of lung cancer which is not associated with smoking, but it is rare, and chances are that is what your husband had if he didn't have any exposures.

Actually, taking a closer look at your message, your husband isn't the exception. He's 39....the earliest lung cancers usually appear in the 40s, though the peak of them are in the 50s and above.

Did your husband smoke?[/QUOTE]

 
Old 02-07-2004, 10:30 PM   #6
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Re: Chest Pain

Okay well, your husband was a heavy smoker. If he was having the "symptoms of lung cancer" in the setting of heavy smoking, then of course one would think lung cancer. But the "symptoms of lung cancer" are by no means specific. What I mean by this is illustrated here:

Take for instance these two patients

1. A 17 year old boy who has been coughing with a bad cold for the past two weeks, and comes to the doctor's office because he coughed up some blood.

2. A 39 year old man with a 30 pack year smoking history presents to your office having coughed up blood.

Now hemoptysis (coughing up blood) is a symptom of lung cancer, yes, but only in the proper setting. The first case, the kid coughed up blood but the chances of him having lung cancer are almost nil. My point is, age can be a great tool to use to rule out certain conditions in people that present with certain symptoms. And these same symptoms have to be evaluated differently if there are drastically different circumstances (as in case #2). It is for the above reason that doctors will never be replaced by robots (to the chagrin of many people I'm sure )

 
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Old 02-10-2004, 11:24 AM   #7
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Re: Chest Pain

Quote:
Originally Posted by antonia34
I had to reply to let you know that my husband age 39 was diagnost with lung cancer 5 months ago. So as you understand age has nothing to do if you have or not have cancer. All so I had spoken with allot of people that they had never smoked and have lung cancer. If you think you have something go check it out. Don't play with you're health. Trust you're god filling, that never let's you down. May god be with you.
My Fiancee was diagnosed with lung cancer in March 2003,He turned 40 Dec 31 2003, So NO Age has nothing to do with it..Cancer knows No age,Race Or Sex..My Heart goes out to you all.
Gail{e-mail address removed}

Last edited by hbguide1; 02-12-2004 at 07:38 AM. Reason: Off-board contact is not permitted at HealthBoards. Please review the Board Guidelines & posting policies at the F.A.Q button above. Thank you.

 
Old 02-10-2004, 08:14 PM   #8
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Re: Chest Pain

Well, it's not fair to say that either. You can't say that age has NOTHING to do with it, because it does. Sure, there are exceptions, but they are just that, exceptions rather than what you see normally.

I'll tell you again, it's not very common to see a 30 year old with lung cancer....it happens, but it's not common. That said, to be a good doctor, you have to keep all of these things in your mind--you just can't think lung cancer as soon as anyone comes to your office with chest pain. That was my original point.

 
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Old 02-18-2004, 09:27 AM   #9
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Post Re: Chest Pain

[Paranoid29] ...I've been suffering from relatively mild chest pains (not constant, but at unrelated times everyday) for the last three weeks ranging from the middle of the chest to the left, right or even towards my back...I was due to visit the doctor on Friday, but woke to no pain so cancelled appointment. Yesterday however, I suddenly felt a much more intense pain in the right side of my chest (like being jabbed in the ribcage hard with a couple of fingers). This pain has been with me every time I take a deep breath, swallow or move a certain way since.
Can anyone help? Its driving me crazy...]


I saw a doctor over the weekend for this and she called it pleuritic pain, pleurisy after she listened to breathing and thatís what she concluded after testing. My chest exrays were normal and Labwork was normal which was a relief. She suggested I see a pulmonologist in 7 days & take Advil...This is a different type of pain & pressure. This started last week and has been with me since. Pains in the chest area, center, left & right and around the sides of ribs also. The two times it was bad my blood pressure went down to 102/88 then it got better. First it felt piercing from the front center straight through the back, then had a tightness straight across my chest that won't go away (this is one thing that is staying with me), pain into my upper back center and outward through shoulder blades, lower back in the lower rib area. It feels like I have gas that I can't burp up and when I go to recline to sleep it feels like I can't catch my breath, like asthma, so I either sit up or go on my side. It is worsened with certain movements like bending, coughing, sneezing, movements. If I sit up I can deal better with the pressure but reclined makes it harder to breath and as I exhale at the end there is a light high pitched whistle, that's when it feels like asthma. When I saw the doctor yesterday, I had no wheezing but it's tight taking a deep breath. If I cough it is very dry one & that sends off the pain. The difference with this is its lasting and not going away. The sharp pains follow movement, breathing or other. The chest tightness and difficulty breathing is staying with me, so I will be following up with the pulmonologist as I was told...First time seeing this type of specialist...Hope he can help me breath better, especially at night.

Take Care.


 
Old 02-20-2004, 01:28 PM   #10
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genners HB User
Re: Chest Pain

I would definitely request x-ray/CAT Scan - preferably the latter to rule serious illnesses out. However, it may also be pleurisy or costochondritis - which cause similar symptoms as what you described. You can check out these illnesses at [url]www.*****.com[/url] - which is an excellent reference!

Best of luck!

Quote:
Originally Posted by antonia34
Hi,

To answer you're question, yes my husband did smoke. He was a havy smoker 3-4 packs a day and all so he was working in construction roofing breathing all the chemicals. When he started having the symptoms he was only 38. He has Small Cell Lung Cancer. None of his family members had any type of cancer. If you want to know anything more please fill free to ask.










QUOTE=butterflytrans]antonia34, your husband is a rare exception. Age, trust me, is a big factor when thinking about the clinical importance of lung cancer. If every person with chest pain or the "gut feeling" went to get a chest x-ray, the medical profession would be so backlogged, people who really needed the help wouldn't get it. I think it's okay to maybe go to the doctor and get checked out, but getting all sorts of tests is useless. They'll all come up normal, and the patient gets even more nervous.

Maybe your husband didn't smoke, but if you take a close history, you'll find that he has some kind of exposure to one of the lung cancer causing agents other than cigarette smoke (which make up the minority of cases). There is a type of lung cancer which is not associated with smoking, but it is rare, and chances are that is what your husband had if he didn't have any exposures.

Actually, taking a closer look at your message, your husband isn't the exception. He's 39....the earliest lung cancers usually appear in the 40s, though the peak of them are in the 50s and above.

Did your husband smoke?
[/QUOTE]

 
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