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Chest pain (left side)
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by only40, Mar 18, 2006
I am 40yr.old female. Pain on left side of chest (just under breast) began 1yr ago, sporadically, not necessarily during exercise (sometimes middle of the night), lasting for minutes to hours. Progressively more frequent. No significant SOB or fatigue.  Edema in extremeties also comes and goes.

Recent ultrasound revealed 1) Hypokenisis of left AND right ventricle, 2) mild pulmonary hypertension and 3) mitral regurgitation. Initial stress test appears normal (they didn't say otherwise), yet results are not back from 2nd round (cardiolite stress test). Appt. with Cardiologist not until April 6th.

My family doctor tells me these things should not cause pain, yet that is what got me to the doctor's office in the first place. Is this a coincidence? Should I be concerned? I feel so fragile and I want to resume exercising but can't bring myself to while this pain is still here.

I should mention that I have a history of kidney disorders, which have left me with slight elevation of BP, still within the normal range but on the higher end.
Answer:
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by Cleveland ClinicBlank, Mar 18, 2006
only40,

Thanks for the post.

There are a lot of things that can cause chest pain and pressure outside of blockages in the arteries.

Things in the heart like vasospasm, high blood pressure and CHF can all cause chest symptoms as well as things outside the heart like pneumonea, asthma, GERD and musculoskeletal problems. Even things outside the chest like anxiety can cause chest symptoms.

You should work with your physician to come up with an explanation that you are comfortable with. Once done, you should continue your exercise and fitness program!

good luck
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Member Comments (26)
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by Konopka1955, Mar 18, 2006
Dear only40,  I read your post and I was wondering when you say:

Your having 'edema' in your extremeties and it comes and goes - how do you know its edema?  Has a doctor told you it was edema?  How can you tell its edema?  

Are you saying you have a kidney disorder history because your within normal BP range?
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by wmac, Mar 18, 2006
Hello, just read your post. I too get a pain under my left breast also. It comes and goes. One cardio told  me that if the pain comes on suddenly and leaves suddenly its not cardiac. Haha right it still scares me. I sometimes also get the pain in the center of my chest as well. I ended up in the er on evening with the pain under my left breast it was not cardiac, dont know what it was finally it left. Since then I have that on and off all the time. I took two tums and believe me it helped within a matter of minutes. But still get it and I still freak. Thinking maybe this time its something. But the espohpegeaous is so close to the heart one never know. But I do still take the tums when it happens and it seems to help. But I have had a full cardiac workup and two ep studies. So that is a bit reassuring. sometimes I also get a ache under the left arm pit as well. Hope this helps.
wmac
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by littlewing50, Mar 20, 2006
I am a 49 yo female former smoker who started experiencing sharp stabbing, burning type sensations in my shoulder about 5 weeks ago usually brought on by movement. The 'pain' moved into my left ribs and side (mid torso) and under my arm, it is now under my left breast. I went in for both chest & shoulder X-rays, and then had a MRI of the upper chest. Radiologist cleared me of any abnormalities, but also offered no explanation. She did mention to me that a possibility of shingles could exist without the usual rash - I never had a rash and the pain didn't follow any pattern. This pain is very transient (at one point on both sides of my chest, then the next day was in the diaphram) and almost positional and reminds me of muscle cramps almost. The shoulder and armpit pain is gone, the rib pain is not. My ribs on the left side - upper chest and mid chest area - are extremely painful to the point where an underwire bra is totally out of the question. The scary part of this (and it may be absolutely unrelated), is an occasional 'racing' heartbeat. This has occurred for months but seems to have increased in frequency with this bizarre pain/cramping, and I can actually bring it on by simply bending slightly at the waist and coughing. I am to see my doc next week for cardiac testing, they have yet to order any bloodwork (gotta love this managed health care). I am very frustrated with this slow process, I have been freaked out for weeks over this. Is there anything else I should look for or talk to my doctor about? Thank you in advance!
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by littlewing50, Mar 22, 2006
I am a 49 yo female former smoker who started experiencing sharp stabbing, burning type sensations in my shoulder about 5 weeks ago usually brought on by movement. No SOB, fatigue or pain when taking deep breaths. The 'pain' moved into my left ribs and side (mid torso) and under my arm, it is now under my left breast. I went in for both chest & shoulder X-rays, and then had a MRI of the upper chest. Radiologist cleared me of any abnormalities, found  'previous asbestos exposure' but offered no explanation for this 'pain'. She did mention to me that a possibility of shingles could exist without the usual rash - I never had a rash and the pain didn't follow any pattern. This pain is very transient (at one point on both sides of my chest, then the next day was in the diaphram) and almost positional and reminds me of muscle cramps almost. The shoulder and armpit pain is gone, the rib pain is not. My ribs on the left side - upper chest and mid chest area - are extremely painful to the point where an underwire bra is totally out of the question. The scary part of this (and it may be absolutely unrelated), is an occasional 'racing' heartbeat. This has occurred for months but seems to have increased in frequency with this bizarre pain/cramping, and I can actually bring it on by simply bending slightly at the waist and coughing. I am to see my doc next week for cardiac testing, they have yet to order any bloodwork (gotta love this managed health care). I am very frustrated with this slow process, I have been freaked out for weeks over this. Is there anything else I should look for or talk to my doctor about? Thank you in advance!
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by maubuchon, Mar 23, 2006
Hey... Im new at this whole heart condition thing at the age of only 21.  I feel lost and confused and I don't really understand what is wrong with me.  I found out last year that my Aortic Valve is leaking.  I don't know what that means!  I do know that I suffer like all of you ladies with the heart pain under the left breast.  I have other symptoms which can include aching on left side of chest, shortness of breath, and at times full body exhaustion.  At 21 I feel as if I am trapped within my body.  I don't know who to talk to.  Every doctor who has done tests make me feel like theres nothing wrong.  I have had a series of tests in the past few years since my "episodes" of pain began, but only the one test came back one time telling me that there was a leaky valve.  The doctor talked to me like I was 10 years old.  I kept thinking "so what do I do now" a year later I'm still asking that question.  I hurt and the only med they've put me on is HEAVY ibeprofen.  I guess now I spend my good days convincing myself there is ABSOLUTLEY NOTHING WRONG, but on the bad days... when the pain is heavy and I have to walk slower... I cry.  Im not overweight, I don't have high blood pressure.  My heart is beating fast and hard, but somedays I am afraid it feels like giving up.  I fell upon this site while looking for support this forum gives me hope that maybe it's not so bad.  I know I will continue telling myself that there is nothing wrong, when I know there could be.  But it feels good to be able to come here on the bad days when fate is staring me in the eyes.  I hope all you ladies are staying strong... especially when you don't have much of a choice.  From one heart to the next, God Bless --- Just A Girl
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by elrob, Apr 03, 2006
At last.  People with undiagnosed pain in the chest.  I have had chest pain now for over 6 years.  The pain feels like what can only be described as a heart attack pain.  I have had every kind of test available done. ECG,stress tests, X-rays, endoscopes, scans,24 hour page monitoring, MRI of my back and blood tests to numerous to mention.  The pain is a constant ache under my left breast bone.It varies in severity and in location.Sometimes I think its my back others my heart and sometimes my stomach. When the pain is at its worst i feel that a heart attack is imminent.  It is so scary.Because I have had every kind of test done and nothing shows up the General Practioner seems to have given up and is putting it down to Muscular Skeletal.I have tried anti acids,anti inflammatory,pain killers and am now on pain killing patches which take the edge off it but don't take it away.Please can anyone help me to try to diagnose this as I am at my wits end.  I feel like death warmed up most times.  I am only 44 and am at the stage that I can almost no longer cope. Any suggestions would be very gratefully received!!
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by jevina, Apr 03, 2006
hi everyone I am 28 female, about 2 month ago I started to have a burning pain under my left breast bone  , chest and rid and under arm, went to doctor did blood work, ekg, stress test, 24 alter monitor, ctscan x-ray,  all normal them I went gi did upper endoscopy say I have acute gastric So  he give me some medication for 2 month this is my second month, anyway I went to gny doctor who them exams me.

Say I costcohondritis say takes Advil when need, and apply heat which help but if I move wrong it hurt, sometime I can breed too strong if I do I get some sharp burning pain, I can lift anything heavy it would hurt, my primary care say he can do anything for me just don do anything to start the pain.

I need some advice please
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by CEEJAYLO30, Apr 05, 2006
I am a 30 yr. old female who is having chest pain. I have lost 25 lbs in the past 3 months and the pain started 3 weeks ago. The pain is on my left side right through my heart. I experience spurts of rapid heart beats (especially when I lay on my side) flutters, knifing pain right through the heart, pinching and also I have had a tightening feeling in the center of my chest, like I need to take my bra off. But when I do, it only relieves the pain a little. I have had constant pain in the center of my chest along with some burning from my stomach that traveled to the center of my chest.

I stopped exercising because even mild walking makes me feel like my heart is just going to give out. That is the best way I can describe it and that is not an exageration. The treadmill is not an even an option right now and I miss exercising. On 4/1/06 I went to the ER for tests, I couldn't take it anymore. The xray and catscan with contrast and blood work revealed nothing. The doctor said that the burning was a side effect from taking herbal diet pills (Xenadrine EFX) I was taking 1 pill a day at 9am. I stopped taking them and the burning went away but the heart pain is still there. I am scared that my heart will fail me one day. My next step is an echo-cardiagram. I will see if that reveals something. I remember as a child (10) I had heart pain too. My parents took me to a cardiologist and he said I had a minor pin hole in my heart and that it was nothing. For years off and on I had minor heart pain that would go away, but this has been constant and the worst for 3 weeks.

Any ideas? I am shocked to see so many of you have the same symtoms. I am wondering if any of you took diet pills in your life? I wonder if I did damage.