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View Full Version : Acid Reflux causing chest tightness?


utbrokers
08-03-2011, 04:04 PM
Hello, I am a 29 year old healthy (Lifts Weight and runs) male that has had constant upper chest tightness since March. The tightness is 24/7. It varies in severity, but never goes away. There is nothing I can pinpoint that makes it worse and there is definately nothing that makes it better (Other than Golfing). I can feel the tightness in my upper chest/lower throat.

It all started in March. I started feeling the tightness and figured I was just getting sick. I have Asthma as well and whenever I get a cold I get this tightness. However, I never ended up getting sick and the tightness has never went away. My Inhalers do not help at all.

I went to my Asthma doctor and he thought that it was allergies. He also did a Pulmonary Function Test, which turned out good. Although March is too early for my allergies to start, I started taking Calritin anyways. He also give me a perscription of prednizone just incase there was an infection in my lungs.

A couple weeks later the Claritin and predinzone wasn't working, so I went to my family doctor. He did an X-ray to rule out Pneumonia and an EKG to make sure it wasn't my heart (Keep in mind that the tightness does not get worse when I am exercising). Everything turned out normal. His next theory was that it was acid reflux aspirating into my lungs. He put me on a stronger PPI and said to come back in 4-weeks if it wasn't helping.

The PPI did not work so I went back and he scheduled an endoscopy. The endoscopy showed no signs of acid reflux, however, there was a small Hital Hernia. He said the Hital Hernia was too small to be causing the tightness I was feeling and to keep on the PPI's and come back in another 4-weeks.

No surprise, I went back to the doctor in 4-weeks because nothing was helping. He scheduled an abdominal and chest CT. We also did some blood work. The Cat Scans and blood work all came back normal.

I have been off the PPI's for a couple weeks and although there has been a little reboud reflux, I don't notice any increase in symptoms. I will also mention that I was on a light does of PPI's before this because of problems swallowing food, (Started in November 2010) which helped take that away.

I do feel bloated sometimes, also, I haven't had what looks like a normal bowel movemant since March (sorry for the detail) that I wonder if it has anything to do with it.

I also went back to the Asthma and Allergy doctor to test for food allergies and It came back positive for slight allergy to Soy, but the doctor doesn't seem to think this is the problem. However, I am going to cut out soy for a month and see what happens.

Is there anyway this could still be realted to acid reflux? Although my difficulties swallowing are gone, could there still be an esophugus strictor that is causing this?

Please let me know if you our someone you know has experienced similar symptoms and what they found out.

MissKitty56
08-08-2011, 09:56 AM
I don't have an answer for you yet, but I've been experiencing chest and throat tightness for a couple of months now. At first the doctors kept saying it was anxiety so they increased my dosages for anxiety. Now, they think it is LPR or "silent reflux" which only affects the throat and upper chest in my case. They also told me it would take at least 6-8 weeks to start healing from any damage done to the throat. It's possible you're just taking longer to heal. Hope you feel better soon.

solofelix
08-08-2011, 12:34 PM
Hi, I have AR/GERD and a Hiatal Hernia and often suffer a tight feeling in my chest.
I am also Asthmatic.
My Asthma is well controlled with Inhalers and I had no problem with my chest until I was diagnosed with H.H and AR/GERD so I have always suspected it was the latter causing the chest problem.
Actually I would describe the sensation in my chest as (PRESSURE) rather than tightness. There is a difference!!.. I feel it is more than likely your H.H, even if it is small. Solofelix.

utbrokers
08-08-2011, 01:48 PM
solofelix - your right, I would describe it more like pressure in my chest area. Kind of feels like my airways are tight like when my Asthma flares up. The funny thing is, I can't even tell when my Asthma is bothering me anymore because the chest pressure masks it. I can feel the pressure/tightness in my chest area 24/7 and have since March. Has yours lasted that long before or does it come and go with reflux episodes?

tianatwo
08-09-2011, 12:41 PM
Hi, I have AR/GERD and a Hiatal Hernia and often suffer a tight feeling in my chest.
I am also Asthmatic.
My Asthma is well controlled with Inhalers and I had no problem with my chest until I was diagnosed with H.H and AR/GERD so I have always suspected it was the latter causing the chest problem.
Actually I would describe the sensation in my chest as (PRESSURE) rather than tightness. There is a difference!!.. I feel it is more than likely your H.H, even if it is small. Solofelix.

I'm glad to see you are heart healthy and you had your symptoms checked out. I have AR/GERD and a Hiatal Hernia also. Some of my heartburn remedies consist of my meds, avoiding foods which cause problems, I also have the head of my bed elevated on 6 inch blocks. That really helps.

Mair22
04-26-2012, 12:42 PM
Hey did you ever find out what happened?

utbrokers
04-26-2012, 01:37 PM
Hey did you ever find out what happened?

It was just stress/anxiety from quitting my job last year and doing my business full time. I didn't know that stress could affect a person that way. I didn't think that I was stressed, but apparently by body thought differently. It comes and goes still, but now that I realize what it was, I handle it a lot better.

Mair22
04-26-2012, 07:31 PM
Well I'm glad you found out. Do you have any tips for coping with it? Thanks!

utbrokers
04-27-2012, 10:12 AM
Well I'm glad you found out. Do you have any tips for coping with it? Thanks!

Just realizing it is stress is the biggest way of coping with it. It all started in March 2011 (Which is when I quit my job and went to work for myself). I felt like I couldn't get a full breath and my chest felt like someone was sitting on it. The more I thought about it, the worse it got. It didn't seem to ever go away, it was there 24/7, so I didn't think it was anxiety/stress. It was this way for months, I had every test imaginable done (CT Scans, Pulmonary Function Test, Endoscopy, Bravo Test, etc..). The doctors thought it was GERD, which I do have, but my medications were keeping it under control. It wasn't until November, after all of the testing, that I realized that whatever it was, wasn't going to kill me. I figured I just better deal with it. It was at that point it started getting better, because I stopped thinking about it. It's now at the point that I only notice it occassionally, and when I do notice it, I have trained myself to just take a deep breath and tell myself that it is just a little stress and to stop thinking about it. Hope this helps you, have you been expierencing the same symptoms?

playadavon
09-25-2012, 08:27 AM
Hello, I am a 29 year old healthy (Lifts Weight and runs) male that has had constant upper chest tightness since March. The tightness is 24/7. It varies in severity, but never goes away. There is nothing I can pinpoint that makes it worse and there is definately nothing that makes it better (Other than Golfing). I can feel the tightness in my upper chest/lower throat.

It all started in March. I started feeling the tightness and figured I was just getting sick. I have Asthma as well and whenever I get a cold I get this tightness. However, I never ended up getting sick and the tightness has never went away. My Inhalers do not help at all.

I went to my Asthma doctor and he thought that it was allergies. He also did a Pulmonary Function Test, which turned out good. Although March is too early for my allergies to start, I started taking Calritin anyways. He also give me a perscription of prednizone just incase there was an infection in my lungs.

A couple weeks later the Claritin and predinzone wasn't working, so I went to my family doctor. He did an X-ray to rule out Pneumonia and an EKG to make sure it wasn't my heart (Keep in mind that the tightness does not get worse when I am exercising). Everything turned out normal. His next theory was that it was acid reflux aspirating into my lungs. He put me on a stronger PPI and said to come back in 4-weeks if it wasn't helping.

The PPI did not work so I went back and he scheduled an endoscopy. The endoscopy showed no signs of acid reflux, however, there was a small Hital Hernia. He said the Hital Hernia was too small to be causing the tightness I was feeling and to keep on the PPI's and come back in another 4-weeks.

No surprise, I went back to the doctor in 4-weeks because nothing was helping. He scheduled an abdominal and chest CT. We also did some blood work. The Cat Scans and blood work all came back normal.

I have been off the PPI's for a couple weeks and although there has been a little reboud reflux, I don't notice any increase in symptoms. I will also mention that I was on a light does of PPI's before this because of problems swallowing food, (Started in November 2010) which helped take that away.

I do feel bloated sometimes, also, I haven't had what looks like a normal bowel movemant since March (sorry for the detail) that I wonder if it has anything to do with it.

I also went back to the Asthma and Allergy doctor to test for food allergies and It came back positive for slight allergy to Soy, but the doctor doesn't seem to think this is the problem. However, I am going to cut out soy for a month and see what happens.

Is there anyway this could still be realted to acid reflux? Although my difficulties swallowing are gone, could there still be an esophugus strictor that is causing this?

Please let me know if you our someone you know has experienced similar symptoms and what they found out.

Hey,

I thought that I was the only one experiencing these symptoms. I swear that when I read your post, I had to double check to make sure that this wasn't the same post that I placed. Literally every experience that you have been through I have as well. My chest tightness started June 2012 and as of now it is still harassing me. I have been down the same road as you as well with the endless tests, endoscopy, the small hiatal hernia, etc. I don't think the doctors know what is wrong with me and I have gotten extremely discouraged. I was thinking of getting a second opinion but it seems that every post I find on my symptoms hasn't had much luck. My proposed diagnosis from the doctors started as muscle spasms, to acid reflux, to GERD, and now they are thinking anxiety related. I am not a anxious person at all so I can't see it as that but I have still done everything that they have asked of me. I really do not know what to do, and all these doctors visit have gotten pricey. It has been a year since you last posted, has there been any changes?

Thanks

utbrokers
09-25-2012, 09:48 AM
To answer your question, I'm doing much better. I started feeling the tightness in March of 2011 and it took about 9 months before I really started feeling better. It was completely Anxiety related!

What I didn't mention in my post above is that about the time this started happening to me, I had just quit my job to go out on my own. I never thought that I was a stressed or anxious person, so I was in complete denial that it was anxiety caused.

To rule out acid reflux, you need to have a 24hr PH Monitoring test done. That is where they attach a small device to your esophagus that monitors the PH. I was still having the chest tightness while I was on the PPI's, so they did the test while I was on the PPI to see if I was still getting reflux. I tested negative.

It was after this test I decided that this was just something I had to live with. I started reading up on breathing exercises that helped me go to sleep at night and tryed to find ways to relax. That is when things started getting better and I realized it was anxiety related. I still get episodes every now and again, and I just go back to the breathing exercises when I get them.

Has there been any stressful changes in your life?

playadavon
09-25-2012, 11:30 AM
To answer your question, I'm doing much better. I started feeling the tightness in March of 2011 and it took about 9 months before I really started feeling better. It was completely Anxiety related!

What I didn't mention in my post above is that about the time this started happening to me, I had just quit my job to go out on my own. I never thought that I was a stressed or anxious person, so I was in complete denial that it was anxiety caused.

To rule out acid reflux, you need to have a 24hr PH Monitoring test done. That is where they attach a small device to your esophagus that monitors the PH. I was still having the chest tightness while I was on the PPI's, so they did the test while I was on the PPI to see if I was still getting reflux. I tested negative.

It was after this test I decided that this was just something I had to live with. I started reading up on breathing exercises that helped me go to sleep at night and tryed to find ways to relax. That is when things started getting better and I realized it was anxiety related. I still get episodes every now and again, and I just go back to the breathing exercises when I get them.

Has there been any stressful changes in your life?

Thank you for your response. The 24hr PH is one thing that I haven't had done yet but it was recommended as a next step by my doctor. As of now I have been told to take Prilosec twice a day. There were no stress related changes back in June however there is one thing that happened to me that I believe set all of this off. I am into weight lifting and cardio as well. It was the morning of June 8th that I started this new Pre Workout called Assault. I woke up, took the Assault and went to the gym around 11am. Fatigue was not and factor while I was in there, and I was lifting everything I could get my hands on. I had a serious amount of energy. Worked out til 12pm, came home and had my protein powder and took my Sports Vita Pak (Also a new supplement as of only a week). Ate breakfast and got ready for work. Around 4pm my heart felt like it was racing and I was getting sweaty palms. Freaked out and went to ER where they stated that I probably took Assault and Vita Pak too close together. Every since then I have been having this constant pressure that will not leave me alone. Before that day that I tried those supps I was 100%; things have not been the same since. I am not saying that the supps caused this, however it is very odd that all of this started happening after I tried that product. It is now going on October and the chest pressure will not let up. And its only pressure on the left side, never on the right.

sadgirl1938
09-25-2012, 12:18 PM
i dont know, but i do know that i to went thru this last year when very ill with reflux, damaged esophagus from bad dilation etc. look at some of my other posts for more explanation of that damaged esophagus. to long to tell here again. but i know what u mean. i am not sure what it was plus i had s.o.b. and would suddenly quit breathing when i started to fall asleep i dont know why maybe a reaction to the anesthesia from dilation ? i dont know, wish i could help more.

utbrokers
09-25-2012, 03:05 PM
Thats interesting. I just went off the pre workout supplements about a week ago. Everytime I would use them I would be depressed after my workout, without any reason. I talked to a couple other people that have had the same issues. I am not normally a depressed person, infact, I am far from it. I worked out on Friday & Yesterday without the supplements and I am just fine. Are you still taking the pre-workout sup?

Do you have Asthma? If so, have you had the pulmonary function test done to make sure your lung capacity is okay?

Also, what does your chest pressure feel like? Does it feel like someone is sitting on your chest?

playadavon
09-25-2012, 04:33 PM
I used to take supplements all the time. After that incident in June I stopped taking everything. All I take now is protein powder after a workout. I do have asthma and I am on a cycle of a new medicine for it called Flovent to see if that controls it better. So far so good however the pulmunary function test is the next step that my doctor recommended if there were no changes after this 30 day cycle. The pressure does two things: About 90% of the time it feels like something is pushing out. The other 10% is the feeling that something is sitting on it. Again, only the left side. It has been driving me bonkers. I appreciate your messages; been feeling alone with these symptoms for long enough.

utbrokers
09-26-2012, 09:45 AM
Is the feeling you have in your chest 24/7? Also, does it seem to get worse when you are talking about it to someone, thinking too much about it, or even when you are posting comments on this board? It may seem like a strange questions, but there is a reason I ask.

Also, have you had a CT scan of your chest and throat done and what were the results? Have you had an EKG and stress test done to check your heart?

I'm not a proffessional, but based on my experience, I would recommend the following. Go and get the pulmonary function test & 24 Hr PH tests done. I know your not going to want to hear this next part, because I know I didn't want to admit it myself, but if those test come back good, I would start checking into it being anxiety.

Schedule an appointment with a therapist or phyciatrist that specializes in anxiety and see what they have to say, it can't hurt.

playadavon
09-26-2012, 11:43 AM
The feeling is there a large part of the day and it has different levels. It can sometimes be literally pushing out of my chest or it will just be a light feeling. Whatever the level is, it is always there. The pressure doesn't seem to be related to when I think about it because I can be totally distracted and it will still be there like "hey, I am still here buddy". lol.

CT scan of my chest and throat, multiple EKGs, and a stress test has been performed to cancel out any of the major issues. My next steps will be the pulmunary function and the PH tests soon as I finish my cycle of Flovent for the asthma and this Prilosec for the GERD that is possibly causing this. I would say I have about 2 more weeks. After that the two tests that you stated will be done.

Yes, anxiety is definitely not the route I would want to go because I am not an anxious person. Most of the time I am pretty mellow so it is just crazy to think that this would be anxiety related. But, if those tests come back fine, I think that is the last step that I have. The feeling is highly annoying and frustrating; it is not something that I just want to deal with for who knows how long.

My wife was thinking that I should get a second opinion; maybe go see a doctor in another hospital. Did you ever try that? In my opinion, it seems like it would be a waste of time as the new doctor will have to start from scratch and probably go down the same path; not to mention, it will be more medical bills.

utbrokers
09-26-2012, 02:31 PM
I went to three different GP's and went to one Gastro, which is who scheduled the 24 hr ph for me. I completely understand where you coming from with the frustration. I even went to see a Dr that specialized in natural medicine, and a chiropractor (I would advise against going to these people, they are nutty). Your symptoms are a little different than me, I felt like someone was sitting on my chest all the time.

Do you notice if symptoms get worse after you eat, sleep, or exercise? Also, does it wake you up at night?

solofelix
09-27-2012, 08:48 AM
Hi,
First of all is your Asthma being monitored. The correct medication for Asthma is essential.
For mine I use SERITIDE which is a reliever and proventative all in one. I have been an Asthmatic for over forty years and have no problems with my Asthma with this treatment.
Aside from this I do suffer from Gastritis and a Hiatal- Hernia and when I get a flare up my breathing and the pressure on my chest is really bad.
In my case I know now that Gastritis and the Hiatal-Hernia cause me similar symptoms to what you have.
Have you had Endoscopy's and what did they reveal. I dont ever remember having a Pulmunary test for my Asthma (maybe they werent available forty years ago) I have had PeakFlow monitoring tests.
I hope you find an answer and all the best,

Solofelix.

Ginnyala12
09-27-2012, 09:28 AM
I also have trouble breathing when there is too much acid in my stomach. I was afraid of asthma. At first the doctor thought it was allergies and prescribed all types of pumps and medications and sent to me to an allergy specialist, but the medications made me more sick and my nose became clogged up. I was anxiety-ridden. I was on a slippery slope going down. I finally went to an acupuncturist. God bless his soul. He pulled me out of my misery. He told me to stop taking all those medications. I gradually got back to normal, but it took about 1 year. I still suffer from acid reflux, but things are under control. I hope to some day find a definitive cure.

Gonzoe
11-12-2012, 12:44 PM
Hello, I am a 29 year old healthy (Lifts Weight and runs) male that has had constant upper chest tightness since March. The tightness is 24/7. It varies in severity, but never goes away. There is nothing I can pinpoint that makes it worse and there is definately nothing that makes it better (Other than Golfing). I can feel the tightness in my upper chest/lower throat.

It all started in March. I started feeling the tightness and figured I was just getting sick. I have Asthma as well and whenever I get a cold I get this tightness. However, I never ended up getting sick and the tightness has never went away. My Inhalers do not help at all.

I went to my Asthma doctor and he thought that it was allergies. He also did a Pulmonary Function Test, which turned out good. Although March is too early for my allergies to start, I started taking Calritin anyways. He also give me a perscription of prednizone just incase there was an infection in my lungs.

A couple weeks later the Claritin and predinzone wasn't working, so I went to my family doctor. He did an X-ray to rule out Pneumonia and an EKG to make sure it wasn't my heart (Keep in mind that the tightness does not get worse when I am exercising). Everything turned out normal. His next theory was that it was acid reflux aspirating into my lungs. He put me on a stronger PPI and said to come back in 4-weeks if it wasn't helping.

The PPI did not work so I went back and he scheduled an endoscopy. The endoscopy showed no signs of acid reflux, however, there was a small Hital Hernia. He said the Hital Hernia was too small to be causing the tightness I was feeling and to keep on the PPI's and come back in another 4-weeks.

No surprise, I went back to the doctor in 4-weeks because nothing was helping. He scheduled an abdominal and chest CT. We also did some blood work. The Cat Scans and blood work all came back normal.

I have been off the PPI's for a couple weeks and although there has been a little reboud reflux, I don't notice any increase in symptoms. I will also mention that I was on a light does of PPI's before this because of problems swallowing food, (Started in November 2010) which helped take that away.

I do feel bloated sometimes, also, I haven't had what looks like a normal bowel movemant since March (sorry for the detail) that I wonder if it has anything to do with it.

I also went back to the Asthma and Allergy doctor to test for food allergies and It came back positive for slight allergy to Soy, but the doctor doesn't seem to think this is the problem. However, I am going to cut out soy for a month and see what happens.

Is there anyway this could still be realted to acid reflux? Although my difficulties swallowing are gone, could there still be an esophugus strictor that is causing this?

Please let me know if you our someone you know has experienced similar symptoms and what they found out.

High I have the same problem uoper chest and lower throat super tight. I haven't done endoscopy but I know it's from rebound acid but it feels like scar tissue bc it's super tight and used be sore. I won't be able go gym. I also have small hernia so I was wondering your endoscopy showed no signs of any inflammation or scar? Wonder why it's so tight for you? If I did dips I'd be in pain.

Ginnyala12
11-16-2012, 11:45 AM
I hope you feel better already Gonzoe. Based on my experience with acid reflux, it DOES cause tightness of breath. I got good results with a diet free of yeast and all things that the yeast likes to grow on. This means no bread, pasta, pizza, wheat products, yoghurt, pickles, mushroom, broth cubes, and no alcoholic beverage--beer and wine were very bad for me. I only started to see results after one month and I got gradually better. I'm still on the diet (5 months later). I feel much better and don't need anti-acids most days-- I used to take them everyday. The PPIs never did anything for me. Another thing that is important to consider is ANXIETY. You need to be relaxed. More importantly you need to pay attention to your spiritual growth. I certainly saw a relation. I hope this helps. Pray and meditate and you will get results.

inthelongrun
03-24-2013, 12:05 AM
I know exactly what you mean. I have the same problem. Mine is in the middle of the chest, practically all the time. Mine also causes breathing problems. It started almost 2 years ago that summer when it got super humid all of a sudden (i live in Missouri, and i have never experienced humidity this bad ever, and ive lived here all my life). I assumed i was having allergies and brushed it off by occasionally taking allegra or something. It never really bothered me that much because it would go away in a day or so. But a few months ago, it came back with a vengeance and it has stayed since then. It got to be everyday so i finally went to a surgeon (referred by my MD), he did a gallbladder ultrasound and low and behold found a pal lop, so i had the gallbladder removed. This was a week ago and I have still had no luck getting rid of this, so the doc gave me a PPI and told me to hang in there. From the research i have done, a PPI may take some time to really start to work, so im trying to be optimistic. I have done everything i could possibly do (i quit smoking (stupid for starting), i changed my diet by: completely eliminating caffeine, replacing 2 meals with fat free or low fat foods, i drink nothing but water or herbal tea, and im trying to exercise more). Im not overweight and im only 24, I never thought i would be having problems like this. I know some of my symptoms relate from anxiety, but I can usually compartmentalize. I guess it all affects eachother though. If anyone has any ideas, I am completely open.