Hi, I hope you can easy my worries. My son has experienced chest pain, one time at school while playing basketball which was about 3 months ago, and tonight. I got a call from the school nurse the first time, she stated that my son had an irregular heartbeat and chest pain. I took him to the ER because I didn't know what was going on with him. The doctor did a chest x-ray on him, EKG plus they checked his blood pressure in his legs, arms, neck. Everything came back fine however, he's complaining again of some chest pain tonight. The doctor said it was probably some muscle pain. The doctor told me if he does it again, he would need an ultrasound on his heart or something like that.. My son is short and skinny. There are heart problems on his fathers side of the family, none on mine. I just worry about him, he is an aspergers child and I want to make sure he is healthy. He hurt for about 10 minutes or so and then he said it stopped hurting. As a mother I worry about him.. he's never had any serious health problems and he rarely gets sick. I'm just wondering if I should take him to the ER again to get him check out?
Sounds like there is no weight (too much) problem, so we can't point to that. Still, as you report the chest pain seems to be related to exercise. My thinking is:
1) continue to pursue a diagnosis with your doctor(s)... an echocardiogarm (my guess) may be helpful if only to put the mind at rest. That test checks the "mechanical" aspects of the heart.
2) try to build up physical strength... this could be simply more walking, but something that would encourage cardiovascular physical health (good heart/lung function).
If you undertake an exercise program, you should discuss with his doctor to be sure my idea is a good one. It is generally good for all of us, whatever our age, to have regular exercise that makes the heart and lungs work. Slow at first, please.
If the nurse at school noticed an irregular heartbeat, then I would trust her report on this. An echo will check the "mechanical" aspects of the heart (valves, heart size, vessels) as Jerry mentioned. But if it's an electrical problem that's causing the heart to beat erratically then your son will need to wear a monitor for a period of time to catch the rhythm. Checking with an ECG while he feels fine won't show a thing.
I grew up with heart arrhythmias, had trouble with P.E. in school because my "chest hurt." The teacher would tell me to keep moving. It wasn't till I was much older that I found out my heart wasn't beating right all the time. Ask his doctor if your son needs to wear a Holter or event monitor for awhile so you can record what his heart is doing when he feels bad.
Thank you both for your comments. I'm going to talk to his regulaur doctor this week. My son isn't that active and he's small.. and I'm going to get more test done if the doctor thinks I should.
The nurse called me at the end of the school yr about my son complaining of chest pain! she monitored him for an hr nd constantly chked his vitals! they were fine sitting down and standing up his oxygen level wen from 100 to 80 in sec and cont to drop until he sat down! i am at he er again wth simuliar circumstances bt this time he passed out and his face was pail and hi lips turned white! he has been to a cardiologist ad tey sad he wasfine!
Looking back, chest pain in my mid teens was the first symptom that i remeber of my Wolff Parkinson White syndrome. My Dad took me to a Dr who said it was growing pains.
Throughout my adult life i had symptoms including dizziness that was also misdiagnosed.
I wasn't diagnosed with WPW until I was 50.
I was lucky to have an incident that led to a cardiologist noticinr that I had a subtle delta wave in my ECG and doing a further test that confirmed that I had WPW.
My symptoms didn't seem to manifest for 24 hour halter checks.
If your son keeps having symtoms you may need to insist on further checks.
From what you've described it definitely sounds like a case of Dysautonomia - specifically check out POTS. Passing out is one of the major symptoms... If this does seem like the case, you might want to look into having a Tilt Table Test done. http://www.dinet.org/pots_an_overview.htm
I started having the same symptoms (especially chest pain) when I was 10... I didn't get diagnosed with it until I was 17.
I hope everything goes well for your son & that you get some answers soon. Let me know if you have any questions. :)
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