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  • Chest Pain/Labored Breathing/etc; What Imaging would you get next?

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    Old 06-11-2020, 03:39 PM   #1
    Darwayne
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    Chest Pain/Labored Breathing/etc; What Imaging would you get next?

    Hello all,

    Iím a 24 y/o male and would really really appreciate some input on what exam I should get next. Iíve asked the same question to my PCP and Pulmonologist but would prefer a wider array of opinions to then present to them for consideration. PLEASE, I don't mind anyone not wanting to read this much but don't jump to "Chest pain & labored breathing? Go see a doc ASAP". I can already hear someone projecting it as I click submit

    Iíve been experiencing sporadic shortness of breath, heart palpitations though very seldom lately and mostly just during hard workouts now, pain in left chest area upon deeper inhales and exhales, can guarantee pain upon each inhale if Iím breathing a chemical in the air like acetone or rubbing alcohol, Other chest pain that produces a pressure-pain to left of sternum during certain workouts usually more prevalent the harder the pump, more prevalent pain in lung/sternum area and breathing gets tight when just slightly dehydrated. Also sometimes feels like the left lung isnít wanting to contract for a fulfilling breath. This next symptom hasnít persisted lately but dealt with it for like 4 months - feeling like I sometimes canít get a smooth food/water swallow in like it keeps allowing some down wrong tube and being a catalyst for left lung pain.

    So to offer context, I donít have a lot of money and therefore have had to do my own due diligence then bring it to my 2 doctors so we can put our heads together. I acquired my medical MJ card January 2019 and began smoking and dabbing 2-3 times daily 4-7 times a week. Developed some very bad lung and bronchial issues come November and stubbornly quit like 3-4 weeks after pain began. It got really bad with constant labored breathing unable to get a few words out between air gasps. Had sharp pain in left lung and right in symmetrical areas as well as bronchials (left bronchial and right lung pain out above bc/ it only persists on left side now).. I had even less $ then so jumped on medical recommendations for COPD patients. So lung damage is a certainty and clearly improving over time.

    But that leaves the heart palps, pressured chest pain, and occasional labored breathing despite being fully hydrated up for question. Also canít be certain that weaker contractions in left lung are lung damage or pulmonary valve related. Damage to pulmonary valve could easily lead to all symptoms. A pericardial effusion could lead to many of them. Iron overload could lead to all and I noted less symptoms after a blood drawing more than once now. I also follow a strict diet for other reasons that include organs - cow liver, kidney, and heart all with sufficient iron in them and have followed it awhile now. Or it could simply be the lung damage symptoms compounding with my back issues/scoliosis as my left rib and sternum are clearly protruding more than right side as scoliosis slowly develops and the pressured chest pain is most prominent with chest-related workouts. So many things to consider unfortunately :/.

    Iíve had an iron panel blood test and all levels are normal though Iíve seen rare cases on the internet of people with normal iron serum levels still having organ iron overload so while in the back burner, I canít fully exclude it.

    Also just had my first imaging, a CT scan w/out contrast of chest. Report said ďNo mediastinal, hilar or axillary lymphadenopathy. Thereís a trace pericardial effusion, and there is fluid in superior pericardial recess & superior aortic recess. Limited views of the upper abdomen are unremarkable. There is a benign 1 mm subpleural nodular density in the left lower lobe (series #4, image #45). The lungs are otherwise clear. There is no pleural effusion or pneumothorax. The osseous structures are intactĒ

    Which ultimately leads me to the question I came to ask! With all that context, what next scan should I seek to rule out as many potential causes as possible? Would a chest MRI show lungs & heart? Or would that be redundant with the CT scan for any possibility outside of heart iron overload? Any other ideas or input are also appreciated . Thank you for bearing with the lengthiness!

     
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    Old 06-12-2020, 04:09 AM   #2
    Titchou
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    Re: Chest Pain/Labored Breathing/etc; What Imaging would you get next?

    Nuclear stress test? Echocardiagram?

     
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    Old 06-12-2020, 08:13 AM   #3
    Machaon
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    Re: Chest Pain/Labored Breathing/etc; What Imaging would you get next?

    Hi Darwayne!

    Sorry that you are experiencing such nasty health problems at your young age!

    I am a big believer that blood pressure measurements can be an extremely important window into the health of someone's metabolism.

    I'm 76 and consider myself to be in very good health despite suffering from heart failure, AFib and autoimmune disease for over 30 years.

    I was able to cure most of my health problems by listening to my blood pressure. I started taking my blood pressure back in 1998, an average of about seven times a day and didn't slacken until around 31,000 readings, in 2010, after a few years of obtaining very healthy blood pressure levels. In my case, my blood pressure readings provided information that enabled me to make changes to my diet and environment and lifestyle that greatly improved my health.

    What do you know about your blood pressure? Does it vary during the day? How high does it get during the day and how low?

    If your blood pressure is at healthy levels almost all the time, then ignore my post and I apologize for wasting your time! If not, then you might be interested in one of my blood pressure posts, as follows:

    Title: My 24 Hour Blood Pressure Averages for 2003 compared with 2008

    Link: https://www.healthboards.com/boards/high-low-blood-pressure/648139-my-24-hour-blood-pressure-averages-2003-compared-2008-a.html
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    Old 06-13-2020, 02:16 AM   #4
    ladybud
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    Re: Chest Pain/Labored Breathing/etc; What Imaging would you get next?

    With some fluid showing up on your CT I think an echocardiogram would be helpful as it provides detailed information about the heart, pericardium and valves. A ferritin blood test is best to check for iron overload. Pulmonary function tests would be good to check status of lungs and check for bronchial spasm (asthma etc). If you do have pericardial fluid on echo you should have a workup for autoimmune disease like lupus. Hope this helps and you get some answers.

     
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    Old 06-14-2020, 02:33 PM   #5
    Darwayne
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    Re: Chest Pain/Labored Breathing/etc; What Imaging would you get next?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ladybud View Post
    With some fluid showing up on your CT I think an echocardiogram would be helpful as it provides detailed information about the heart, pericardium and valves. A ferritin blood test is best to check for iron overload. Pulmonary function tests would be good to check status of lungs and check for bronchial spasm (asthma etc). If you do have pericardial fluid on echo you should have a workup for autoimmune disease like lupus. Hope this helps and you get some answers.
    Thanks for the advice! I'm having my doc order me an echo monday. Upon your recommendation and some others on forums, it definitely seems like the best next step. I checked my ferritin and did an iron panel weeks ago and all showed within normal ranges. Ferritin in particular was on the lower side of the range which was reassuring. That's why I was curious whether it's possible for my organs to store it to the point of overload in an attempt to keep my blood levels normal.. But that sounds incredibly unlikely. This is why I'm not a doctor .

    I'll check out the pulmonary function test! I hadn't really stopped to consider it but I was diagnosed with Lyme a 18 months ago after having to drop out of highschool because of sudden onset of a ridiculous host of symptoms. I discovered that nearly all my health issues connected back to Lyme.

    I didn't think Lyme would be the culprit for this as I adopted an anti-Lyme lifestyle awhile back of healthy keto, prolonged fasts, sunbathing for Vit D, more exercise, icebaths, more sauna, etc etc. and majority of my symptoms have dissipated. But I recall a connection between heart issues and Lyme. I'm really hoping the echo will tell me something so I can be on with my life

     
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    Old 06-14-2020, 02:36 PM   #6
    Darwayne
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    Re: Chest Pain/Labored Breathing/etc; What Imaging would you get next?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Titchou View Post
    Nuclear stress test? Echocardiagram?

    I'm jumping on the Echo ASAP! Having my doc order it Monday. The nuclear stress test sounds like a very promising 2nd test of Echo doesn't show anything given my extra symptoms with exercise.
    Thank you

     
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    Old 06-15-2020, 11:01 AM   #7
    Darwayne
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    Re: Chest Pain/Labored Breathing/etc; What Imaging would you get next?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Machaon View Post
    Hi Darwayne!

    Sorry that you are experiencing such nasty health problems at your young age!

    I am a big believer that blood pressure measurements can be an extremely important window into the health of someone's metabolism.

    I'm 76 and consider myself to be in very good health despite suffering from heart failure, AFib and autoimmune disease for over 30 years.

    I was able to cure most of my health problems by listening to my blood pressure. I started taking my blood pressure back in 1998, an average of about seven times a day and didn't slacken until around 31,000 readings, in 2010, after a few years of obtaining very healthy blood pressure levels. In my case, my blood pressure readings provided information that enabled me to make changes to my diet and environment and lifestyle that greatly improved my health.

    What do you know about your blood pressure? Does it vary during the day? How high does it get during the day and how low?

    If your blood pressure is at healthy levels almost all the time, then ignore my post and I apologize for wasting your time! If not, then you might be interested in one of my blood pressure posts, as follows:

    Title: My 24 Hour Blood Pressure Averages for 2003 compared with 2008

    Link: https://www.healthboards.com/boards/high-low-blood-pressure/648139-my-24-hour-blood-pressure-averages-2003-compared-2008-a.html
    Thank you for the kind words. Honestly, I've started to view it from an optimistic perspective where my health issues turned my attention to just how unhealthy standard American lifestyle is. I too dealt with autoimmune related issues (Lyme) for 13 years now that began in middle school and finally couldn't handle the compiling symptoms in 11th grade highschool so I dropped out. My parents had taken me to every doctor under the sun between 8th-11th grade when symptoms started hitting me hard.

    I mentioned in a reply to someone else on this thread that I really hadn't thought to consider Lyme as a culprit to all this though I should've. Over the last 12-18 month, I slowly incorporated more and more unconventional methods through deeper research once I figured out and was diagnosed with Lyme. Strict healthy keto, prolonged fasting, better sleep, daily sunbathing (lucky to live on sunbelt), more exercise, morning ice baths, more sauna, fermenting foods for gut, insuring I'm hitting all micro and macro nutrients, etc.

    I find your blood pressure deep dive very interesting and worth pursuing. Every time I measure it, it's consistently at 110/55 or very close. I will start making multiple trips a day to my local drug store to measure it in case it fluctuates through the day.

    Awesome to hear about your health turn around. I couldn't imagine 30 years of dealing with such ailments. I was driven very close to suicide after no luck with multiple weekends at Mayo clinic which was our last hope for diagnosis at the time. Sounds stupid but having a dog to care for was usually my solace from those thoughts.. Then forums like this one led me to investigating Lyme with an unconventional doctor because, as I'm sure you experienced, many conventional doctors unintentionally follow corrupt guidelines in their remedy paths.. Guidelines created by multi-billion dollar special interest groups. Such is life for a sick person! lol

     
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    Old 06-16-2020, 06:58 AM   #8
    Machaon
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    Re: Chest Pain/Labored Breathing/etc; What Imaging would you get next?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Darwayne View Post
    ... I too dealt with autoimmune related issues (Lyme) for 13 years now ... My parents had taken me to every doctor under the sun ...
    There are many variations of autoimmune disease and most doctors just don't have a clue about autoimmune.

    The mystery that confronts autoimmune patients is: "What does my immune system consider as an attack from something foreign that, before, it mostly ignored."

    With autoimmune, our immune systems react or over-react to things that NEVER bothered us before. Our immune systems over-produce hormones and cytokines to defend against the "mistaken" attacks; and these excessive hormones and cytokines can cause all kinds of mayhem within our bodies! Very complex and confusing. A doctor would almost have to live with you and follow every step and reaction to be able to properly diagnose your autoimmune symptoms.

    My most annoying and most significant problems were with difficult or labored breathing, mental and physical fatigue, chest pain, irregular heartbeats, and feeling like I was going to pass out. There were multiple reasons for the problems. It took years to figure it out!

    Quote:
    I mentioned in a reply to someone else on this thread that I really hadn't thought to consider Lyme as a culprit to all this though I should've.
    My autoimmune was caused by an experimental "live" flu shot, that I naively took back during the 1968 influenza A (H3N2) pandemic and made worse by a year long infection in 1992.

    Quote:
    Over the last 12-18 month, I slowly incorporated more and more unconventional methods through deeper research once I figured out and was diagnosed with Lyme. Strict healthy keto, prolonged fasting, better sleep, daily sunbathing (lucky to live on sunbelt), more exercise, morning ice baths, more sauna, fermenting foods for gut, insuring I'm hitting all micro and macro nutrients, etc.
    I am certainly no expert, but it seems like you are taking some very positive steps to fight back! Good for you! Are you experiencing any improvements?

    Quote:
    I find your blood pressure deep dive very interesting and worth pursuing. Every time I measure it, it's consistently at 110/55 or very close. I will start making multiple trips a day to my local drug store to measure it in case it fluctuates through the day.
    I don't know if you will gain the same kind of investigative results from your blood pressure readings. When I was taking mine, I reacted to "spikes" in my blood pressure. After I received an unexpected high reading, I would ask myself, what did I eat or drink in the past hour or so? What did I come into contact with or was exposed to? As I eliminated foods, chemicals, odors, at times it would help and at other times it changed nothing. That is why it took so many YEARS for me to get better! Trial and error!

    Quote:
    Awesome to hear about your health turn around. I couldn't imagine 30 years of dealing with such ailments.
    Thanks! It wasn't fun, but it's fun now!

    Quote:
    I was driven very close to suicide after no luck with multiple weekends at Mayo clinic which was our last hope for diagnosis at the time.
    I'm glad that you talked yourself out of it! You only have one ride on your journey through life on this planet. If you "get off" your ride, it's gone forever!

    Quote:
    ... many conventional doctors unintentionally follow corrupt guidelines in their remedy paths..
    Getting a medical degree and certification doesn't make someone a good, or caring doctor. For some it was a choice between flipping burgers or becoming a doctor, and they chose the wrong profession!

    One last thing... I took many notes during each reading so I could compare increased or decreased symptoms across numerous readings. It really helped!

    Best of luck and health! Bob
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    ⇒ For my asthma medication I use $6 fluticasone nasal spray BID! Saves me $$$
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