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Old 10-15-2004, 02:56 PM   #1
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Weird chest pains woke me up early a.m.

Two mornings ago (5:45 a.m and I had been asleep!) I was abruptly awakened 30 minutes before my alarm would've gone off by the most peculiar chest pain(s).

It was fairly strong, but I did not get out of bed immediately, and instead just rubbed the area(s) that hurt until pain stopped, which took probably a minute or slightly less (though pains always seem longer, I know). After it stopped I got up and took my own blood pressure/pulse. Result: normal.

Here are the specifics: pain(s) were left-sided, from just above and including entire left breast down through lowest left-sided ribs (nothing below the rib cage).

Pain was not under/beneath breast bone area, and did not cause shortness of breath. It was not burning, nor stabbing, nor particularly squeezing or heavy like the sensation of something pressing hard on the area. It was just plain strong achy pain.

Rubbing the area(s) didn't make it worse, and then it just stopped as quickly as it started.

I saw a cardiologist two years ago and had stress echocardiogram (I am now 55/female). Reason for that was an all-day burning sensation beneath the breastbone and in upper back. I took myself to the ER after work and just spent 2 hours there but after many tests nothing was found. Two weeks later, I saw the highly-rated cardiologist/electrophysiologist nearby who did the stress ECHO. Again, nothing unusual was found, though I had trouble staying on the treadmill for long, which is VERY common in females. I was told I was just "out of shape" and needed to lose weight and walk more. I have lost the weight, had my gall bladder removed (just four months ago!) and now walk more.

When I saw the cardio doc again yesterday he was rather perplexed and said what I reported was "atypical" for cardiac pain. He said I COULD have another stress test if I wanted to, this time with the nuclear markers. He said it's no better or worse than what I had two years ago, just somewhat different. Reading about this test on the web today confirms what he said.

I told him that since he was not actually "recommending" it I'd just wait awhile and see what happens. He was fine with that. I am also very anxiety-prone and take very low dose Xanax daily, and 25 mg. of Atenolol daily for a 6 year history of palps. The cardio told me back then that I have "benign arrythmia" and that it is "sinus tachy." All I ever feel is occasional blips that can be disconcerting but never last more than about two to 10 seconds. This is generally made worse by anxiety, lack of sleep and caffeine to name a few causes. He is totally unconcerned about the arrythmia.

Has anyone out there with chest pains felt oddball pains like I had the other (early) morning? We always hear that we should check EVERYTHING out but I've talked to a lot of people, especially women, who say they report these various pains, etc., but never get any real explanation for them, even after tests are done.

 
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Old 10-15-2004, 04:02 PM   #2
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Re: Weird chest pains woke me up early a.m.

How are you so sure that the pain was not under your breastbone? Doctors, especially cardiologist, have a poker face, and do not want you to know what they are concerned with, until they want you to know what they are concerned with. The very first thing that all doctors are taught, is that there are certain types of people, who truly believe that they are sick, but are not. I forgot the name of this term, that characterizes this type of patient, but it has nothing to do with hypochondria. You are very descriptive of your pain and discomfort, which makes it so much easier to relate to and try to find answers for. I'll be back, when I have properly researched your post. ( does that sound high hatted or what, lol.) Just wanted to speak with you and exclaim that you have a remarkable ability for explaining your pain

 
Old 10-15-2004, 05:50 PM   #3
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Santa Fe, NM, USA
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Re: Weird chest pains woke me up early a.m.

Thanks, Jack, for responding...

I look forward to your further comments, and for complimenting me on my pain-description "skills."

I really do not believe I felt anything in the center of the chest area at all, because I am particularly attuned to look for that sign given my nervous tendencies and what I already know about heart disease/typical cardiac pain. But who knows?

Hope to hear from you again...

 
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