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Dr. Singh
Dr. Singh, Doctor
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 6496
Experience:  MBBS. General Practitioner, experienced in hospital care and primary care.
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What would cause radiating pain that starts in my chest and

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What would cause radiating pain that starts in my chest and moves up my neck into my jaw? It's very intense when it happens, usually when I'm laying down during the night. I've had my heart checked and it is fine.
Pain in chest that radiates upward and is triggered by lying down, is most likely due to acid reflux disease or GERD. Reflux of acid from the stomach into the esophagus can occur due to a lax sphincter or hernia. Also H. Pylori infection is possible. For now I would suggest taking Zantac before dinner and see if it helps. Raising the head end of the bed can also help. Also taking frequent small meals instead of few large meals can help. You should also see your doctor to evaluate this and get some tests done like barium swallow, pH probe, endoscopy etc.

There can be other cause for your symptoms as well like inflammation of cartilage and other connective tissues, pinched nerves, vascular disease etc. So you should discuss these with your doctor as well.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I have had acid reflux in the past and I know what that feels like. There is no burning or stomach contents flowing back up my throat. No chest pain like I've had with acid reflux. And I do presently take medicine for that. I have no other discomfort. The pain, which I can only describe as radiating up through chest into my collarbones into my jaw bone, feels like a hot flash only with pain and not heat. It feels like it comes through the bones. I feel nothing in my throat or esophagus. However, the pain is so intense in my jaw that it causes alot of anxiety and fear.
Okay, if this is not acid reflux, then most likely it is musculoskeletal. Stress or anxiety alone would not explain these localized and specific symptoms. A chest X-ray can be done to look for signs of inflammation in the cartilage and jaw joints. Also you should consider getting a stress test done for the heart, and possibly see a cardiologist for this. EKGs alone are not very sensitive to catch all types of heart disease. Although I still think that it could be acid reflux because it can cause atypical symptoms in many patients, and you already have history of reflux.
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