Pediatric Heart Expert Forum
Chest pains around heart area - teenager
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Questions in this forum are answered by pediatric cardiologists, cardiothoracic surgeons and anesthesiologists from The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. This forum is for questions and support about pediatric heart problems, symptoms and topics such as heart murmurs, palpitations, fainting, chest pain, congenital heart defects (including management and intervention), fetal cardiology, adult congenital cardiology, arrhythmias and pre-participation athletic screening.

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Chest pains around heart area - teenager

Hello,
I'm a 16 year old female, and over the last 2 weeks I've been experiencing mild chest pains on my left side.  At first, it was a mild ache where my heart is, and would subside in an hour or so.  Then I felt some pain around the side of my chest, under my breast and around to my back, which would be worse if I breathed in deeply.  Now I have recently been experiencing stabbing/pinching pains (hard to describe exactly) in my heart area which come and go with no apparent reason.  I am not in a lot of pain but it is causing me discomfort and I am wondering if there is anything to worry about.  I have been to my doctors today, and he tested my blood pressure which was OK and listened to my heart/lungs/back etc.  He doesn't seem to know what is causing it, which is why I'm asking on here.  I am otherwise healthy and have no family history of heart problems.
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Dear Dragon,

Obviously, without examining you, I can’t say for sure what the cause of your chest pain is.  However, it is quite likely that your chest pain is due to a musculoskeletal cause.  We do see chest wall pain quite frequently in teenagers, but the history can vary, so it’s important to make sure that a good history is obtained.  Briefly, sharp pain in adolescents is common, is only a nuisance, and needs no medications.  It is often brief, worse with inspiration, and not severe.  The bottom line here, though, is that often knowing that this is not a heart attack is reassuring enough that the pain can be ignored till it disappears.
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