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Ask Dr. D. Love Your Own Question
Dr. D. Love
Dr. D. Love, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 18757
Experience:  Family Physician for 10 years; Hospital Medical Director for 10 years.
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I have been having issues with an discomfort in my chest,

Customer Question

I have been having issues with an discomfort in my chest, left side. Sometimes it feels like there is a little pressure and some minor pains. The pains have also occurred in my shoulder and neck. There have also been some moments where I have the feeling as if my breath is being taken away.
I have been to the ER twice in the last 8 days. Every test (blood,EKG, xray and stess) has been negative. I still feel uncomfortable and I am not sure what to do.
Please help
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.

Hello from JustAnswer.

When you are having the pain, is there any tenderness when pressing on the chest in the area of the pain?

Have you tried taking any medicines for relief of the pain?

Are you taking any chronic medicines?

Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.

I had asked for some further information and have not heard back.

There are many possible causes chest discomfort or pain. It is appropriate to first question whether it is heart pain, as was done during the two ER visits, but once the heart tests have been done and are normal, it is appropriate to consider other possible causes of the pain.

With pain that is also occurring in the neck and shoulder, it is suspicious that the chest pain is musculoskeletal in origin. This can be due to inflammation in the rib cage or from a pulled muscle as it inserts into the rib cage. Inflammation most often occurs in the joints at the ends of the ribs where they attach to cartilage near the breast bone, which is called costochondritis.

Another common cause of chest discomfort is from conditions in the GI tract. Some conditions, such as acid reflux or esophageal spasm, will more typically cause chest discomfort. In addition, conditions that usually cause upper abdominal symptoms can sometimes cause pain in the chest, such as ulcer disease or gallbladder disease.

If there is tenderness along the rib cage, that would support that the discomfort is from musculoskeletal conditions.

At this point, there are a couple options. You could see your primary care doctor for further evaluation to look for these other causes of chest pain. Alternatively, you could try an over the counter medicine to relieve common causes of chest pain. An over the counter anti-inflammatory medicine, such as ibuprofen or naproxen, may be able to relieve pain from musculoskeletal problems. An over the counter medicine for suppression of stomach acid, such as ranitidine or omeprazole, may be able to relieve pain from certain GI conditions, such as acid reflux.

If I can provide any further information, please let me know.