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Old 03-27-2007, 09:08 AM   #1
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what are symptoms of heart problems

can anyone tell me what the symptoms of a attack can be esp for a woman? They say chest pain in the center of chest..what exactly is center of chest.is it above the breast area..between breast area.

 
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Old 03-27-2007, 09:38 AM   #2
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Re: what are symptoms of heart problems

wrmasylum,

The underlying cause would distinquish the signs and symptoms. If the cause is ischemia (lack of blood flow) to the heart, there usually is chest pain or tightness, pressure (angina), but about 26% of the heart attack (MI) population have no symptoms (especially for diabetics and older people).

Or there can be irregular, very fast, very slow heart rate. There is no particular area of the chest and the pain , and the pain can radiate to the left arm, neck or jaw. I don't know of any gender distinction for heart problems other than it appears women's heart problems develop later in life.

Last edited by started04; 03-27-2007 at 09:39 AM.

 
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Old 03-28-2007, 05:36 AM   #3
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Re: what are symptoms of heart problems

I have been advised by both my GP and cardio that heart pain (angina) can be felt anywhere in the chest.
There is one way to know for sure if it is chest pains from the heart and that is if you take a deep breath in through your nose for 5 counts, hold for one and then breathe out for 5 counts and the pain gets worse, then its probably heart pain.
If the pain goes away with the breathing, or with movement then it is not angina.

I get a wierd pain a day before and a day after my period every month on the upper part of my left breast. My doc says its chest wall pain and not to worry. I only get it when my hormones are crazy, so now I am kind of used to it.

Lyl

 
Old 03-30-2007, 08:11 AM   #4
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Re: what are symptoms of heart problems

Hi lyl.

I just read your post and I have costochrodritis (chest wall pain) for years. On several E.R. visits, my g/p and my husbands crdiologists, what I have read here and other places if you pain increases with movement and breathing it is not heart pain. I was told you cannot reproduce heart pain but you can muscle and rib pain. But what I understand you as saying is the opposite of what I read and have been told.

I know angina comes on mainly with exertion and will uually go away with rest.

Hopefully someone will comes along with more knowledge than I have concerning this.

Linda
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Old 03-30-2007, 10:22 AM   #5
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Re: what are symptoms of heart problems

The symptoms vary from person to person, and can be very different in women than men. Of several women in their early 50s I know who have had heart attacks (or like me, almost had a heart attack and got it caught in time), the symptoms varied as follows:

#1: Had no symptoms until she had a massive heart attack which was unmistakeable when she had it (except she thought for a couple of days she had the stomach flu).

#2: Thought she had indigestion. She died.

#3: No symptoms that she remembers. She had a "silent" attack that was found weeks or months later when going through pre-testing for an unrelated surgery.

#4: Felt ill, had pain in her back between her shoulder blades. She had a massive heart attack.

#5: Classic angina symptoms: a pressure/squeezing type pain in the center of my chest, right between the breasts and under the breast bone. It came on with exercise (e.g. walking briskly while carrying say 10 lbs), and went away within less than a minute when I sat down. It felt like no other pain I've had before or since.

My understanding is that the most common signs of a heart attack in women are severe chest pain and nausea; but you want to "catch it" before it progresses to a heart attack, so I would not ignore any chest pain, especially if I were in my late 40s, early 50s, or older and had other risk factors (e.g. diabetes, a family history of heart disease, high cholesterol, overweight, high blood pressure, severe stress, etc.).

I know of no way to know "for sure" whether it is heart pain without going to the doctor/emergency room and having the appropriate tests (even then, depending upon what tests they do, they may not know "for sure").

 
Old 04-01-2007, 01:52 PM   #6
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A Way to Determine if It's Angina?

Quote:
Originally Posted by lylone View Post
.................

There is one way to know for sure if it is chest pains from the heart and that is if you take a deep breath in through your nose for 5 counts, hold for one and then breathe out for 5 counts and the pain gets worse, then its probably heart pain. If the pain goes away with the breathing, or with movement then it is not angina................

I get a wierd pain a day before and a day after my period every month on the upper part of my left breast. My doc says its chest wall pain and not to worry. I only get it when my hormones are crazy, so now I am kind of used to it.

Lyl
I'll try to remember that simple test, lylone, and thanks!

Now does anyone know exactly what "chest wall pain" is? Does it feel like inflammation, and does burping hurt? If you have congestion in your lungs, how do they determine if it's allergy congestion or pulmonary edema? I'm looking for simple non-invasive tests. Maybe an echo-cardiogram and what else? Not stress. I think they stop those at a certain age, maybe even the chemical kind.

Exertion, such as the basement stairs, causes the chest tightness for hours, all day, doesn't stop when I rest.

Last edited by Eagle; 04-01-2007 at 01:53 PM.

 
Old 04-01-2007, 07:25 PM   #7
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Re: what are symptoms of heart problems

Chest wall pain, costochondritis is a inflamation of the chest wall. I have this for years. If you have it you will find spots on the sides of you sternum that hurt like crazy if you push on it. I never get out of breath doing stairs but it hurts to take a deep breath, even movement makes it hurts more. Usually it is on the left side but I and other people have it both sides. It can affect all your ribs front and back and believe me it hurts. Heat and resting does help.

I never heard of an age limit for a stress test, my mil is 84 and just had one done.

The rest of your questions I am not able to help you with. I know Lenin is quite knowledgable about these things and has chest wall pain also. If he does not post on this thread, post to him, He will answer you, he is very helpful and caring.

Linda
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Old 04-02-2007, 04:02 AM   #8
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Chest Wall Inflammation

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Originally Posted by pa235 View Post
Chest wall pain, costochondritis is a inflamation of the chest wall. I have this for years. If you have it you will find spots on the sides of you sternum that hurt like crazy if you push on it. I never get out of breath doing stairs but it hurts to take a deep breath, even movement makes it hurts more. Usually it is on the left side but I and other people have it both sides. It can affect all your ribs front and back and believe me it hurts. Heat and resting does help.

I never heard of an age limit for a stress test, my mil is 84 and just had one done.

The rest of your questions I am not able to help you with. I know Lenin is quite knowledgable about these things and has chest wall pain also. If he does not post on this thread, post to him, He will answer you, he is very helpful and caring.

Linda
Thanks much, Pa 235. Your mil had the exercise stress test at 84, or the chemical one?

Hoping Lenin will post and tell us if allergies can cause the chest wall inflammation. I was taking Zyrtec, but now can only use generics because Blue Cross drastically raised our rates and brand names are incredibly expensive. Would stopping the Zyrtec cause problems? There's an "unproductive cough" now along with the pre-existing post-nasal discharge.

Everyone, my husband lent me his blood pressure cuff yesterday, as you need a chart for a little while if thinking of going for an exam. Older people can have a low diastolic, the second figure, especially on one of those grocery store machines when you're moving around. Hopefully the home ones are more accurate.

 
Old 04-02-2007, 05:25 AM   #9
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Re: Chest Wall Inflammation

Eagle,

Funny you should mention Zyrtec, because I just bit the bullet and got a perscription from my doctor on friday. I have been on generic Claritan for years and with all the pollen it wasn't doing squat. I am going on vacation soon and didn't want to feel like crap the whole time. Aetna doesn't pay Zyrtec either.
I also take Musinex to help with chest congestion which helps with the drainage and the unproductive coughing.
Chest Wall pain feel like what pa235 mentioned. If I press on the area it hurts and on the other side of my chest it does not have the same pain. Some days it feel like someone is pressing their knuckle into my chest. I also noticed that you a female and the pain seems to be more noticeable around my period.

I had a nuclear stress test and an echo last year at age 35, and they found nothing. Both tests were paid 80% by insurance and I had to pick up the other 20%. It was costly, but worth it.

 
Old 04-02-2007, 07:40 AM   #10
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Re: what are symptoms of heart problems

I doubt that allergies can cause "chest wall pain" unless it is causing so much coughing that your diaphragm and ribs begin to ache. Nor will any of the decongestants.

"Center of Chest':
My angina bouts are always centered smack dab under my breastbone...for me it's best decribed as a "griping burn", really quite similar to heartburn mixed with an exophageal spasm. Thus middle of the chest for me is the prescise middle. BUT the pattern of heart pain is that it CAN radiate all over the place so somebody might easily think its a case of gastritis.

I spent 10 hours in bed last night...a silly thing for me to do EVER. It was coincidental with an extra hard workout with weights on Friday. That combo is SURE to stiffen me up. So this morning I reached overhead for my coffee cup and, sure enough, I got such a shot to my left rib-cage I thought I had been run through by a Medieval pike. That's the characteristic pain of costochondritis...quick and EXTREMELY painful. Nothing to worry about but nevertheless I let LOTS of expletives fly.

Last edited by Lenin; 04-02-2007 at 07:42 AM.

 
Old 04-02-2007, 10:45 AM   #11
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Re: what are symptoms of heart problems

Hi Lenin,

Boy do I know those sharp shooting pains, I call them zappers, they are enough to knock you on your butt. I had them one night from 7 at night and was still getting at 6 am, it seemed like every 5 minuets and they would go from shoulder to shoulder right below the collar boone, I went to the ER I could not stand them any longer. They did the cardiac testing and said costo

I was just at the DR. for a routine visit and she was pushing around my ribs, boy I swear they like to see you in pain, I was yelling, that really hurts when pressure is applied. Do you get soreness and rib pain with your costo also, I do, in fact my upper chest both sides is almost always sore. When I am in a bad flare I can have the pain in every rib front and back. It is a miserable dd.

Linda
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Old 04-03-2007, 06:16 AM   #12
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Re: what are symptoms of heart problems

Linda,

Mine isn't so bad as yours It comes in attacks maybe 4 or 5 times a year and lasts a week or so. I can ALWAYS look back and figure out what triggered it and it could have been avoided IF I had been paying attention 24/7...but who does that? There's always a reach or a bend, sometimes slight and the day before ALWAYS involves some lifting or overbending.

It can be anywhere, front or back and when it hits I know it's several days of pain. Usually the back that radiates clear though to the front is the most debilitating.
I think naproxyn treats it the best possible. I pop 2 of them as soon as I am "struck" <as if by lightning.>

If I can only remember to strech my torso gently every single morning...but I can't!

Last edited by Lenin; 04-03-2007 at 06:18 AM.

 
Old 04-05-2007, 07:46 AM   #13
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Cool Chest Wall Pain

4-4-07

Thanks for posting, Lenin.

Mine's not bad at all now, sounds like yours, from lifting, especially when I was sore from some snow-shoveling.

Know I had a pulled muscle for one thing, which HEALS IN 3 WEEKS. There's muscle relaxants, and I have some methocarbomol. Was a little afraid to take any, in case it was a heart muscle causing spasms, all gone now. I'll try to remember not to get carried away any more by 8" of snow.

Till next time.

 
Old 04-06-2007, 05:59 PM   #14
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Re: what are symptoms of heart problems

The pain is not necessarily just in the center of the chest. If you can imagine a starburst, with its center below your ribs smack in the middle, spreading outwards, toward both shoulders, that's pretty close. It is so deep and so intense, you have never felt anything like it.

 
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