I'm a 35 yr old male without any extreme risk factors for illness. In fact since about age 27 I've exercised regularly and lifted weights in moderation.
For about the past year I started feeling my pulse inside my upper chest when I exercised or during emotional excitement. Strange sensation, I thought, but I never thought much of it. That is, until about 4 months ago...I started having this peculiar heaviness resting on my chest pretty much all the time, and almost anytime I strain I get a very obviously abnormal and intense throbbing in my upper central chest, and quite commonly a very intense throbbing deep in my head as well.
When I say strain, I mean, things that cause it are....First standing up especially, walking up stairs, straining on the toilet, or lifting weights (even if it is leg exercises which put 0 strain on the upper body)...point is, straining causes it...Especially when major muscle groups are involved such as the quads (standing)......and then it passes after many seconds. Cardiovascular aerobic exercise doesn't cause it at all, although I do still notice that peculiar pulse awareness I mentioned before. This is not chest pains like a heart attack, but only happens during straining
My doctor ran an EKG, about 10 blood tests, chest xray and echocardiogram...and could find "nothing wrong", last year I was on decadron nasal spray for 2 months trying to open up my nose (i may need septum surgery that's another story)..but could that have caused this?
Although I gather this doesn't sound like a commonly recognizable set of symptoms such as would be with angina, it is nevertheless far outside the ordinary human experience, and I am asking you what should I consider next?
I guess the other test I would order would be a CT scan of the chest with contrast to evaluate for the presence of pulmonary embolus, or structural heart disease such as an ASD or aortic aneurysms. I think it is unlikely with your risk factors that you have angina or coronary atherosclerosis so I would pursue the CT before any stress tests.
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