I need to know if this pain I feel warrens a doctor visit. I have this odd stabbing pain in my chest sometimes, when I move my shoulders, or stretch with my hands above my head. It's almost directly in the middle of my sternum... I've heard stories about people that feel chest pain, like they pulled something (don't really know how that feels) but, they had a heart attack instead, possibly dieing from it, because they didn't go in until it was too late... Now, I don't feel any of the other symptoms that are usually associated with a heart attack... It's not been constant... it goes away for days at a time, and I don't see many of the other signs of a heart attack....
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Since you have chest pain due to certain movements, what you have is probably Scalene Myofascial Pain Syndrome. When scalene muscle is the cause of pain, the pain is referred to (either all or a combination of) chest, inner lining of scapula (shoulder bone), shoulder, posterior and lateral sides of the arm right up to the thumb and index finger. When this muscle shortens, this can press on brachial plexus (bundle of nerves and blood vessels in the armpit) and the subclavian artery and can compress or irritate these structures and cause symptoms such as abnormal sensation, cold extremity, spasms of pain, and lymphedema (swelling of lymph channels causing swelling of arm or leg) in the involved extremity. Treatment is by physiotherapy that involves indentifying the trigger points, and massaging them, and other exercises to relieve the muscle tension. This is a major cause of thoracic outlet syndrome.
It can also be due to costochondritis. Chest pain aggravated by laughing yawning, moving in certain directions, stretching and deep breathing goes more in favor of costochondritis, which causes pain and tenderness at points where your ribs attach to your breastbone. The inflammation around the joint area gives sharp pain on taking a breath. This can also cause tenderness on pressing the area which pains. An orthopedic doctor can diagnose this for you. Generally there is no cause. However it can be due to infection, blow, injury, or fibromyalgia. It usually goes away on its own. Otherwise it can be treated with muscle relaxants, and non steroidal anti inflammatory drugs. It can also be muscle pull. Shingles can also start this way.
Since I cannot examine you and know other related conditions you may be having, nor is a detailed history possible on net, I have listed the various possibilities that should be looked into. Please consult your PCP to run tests and examination to clinch a diagnosis.
Thanks for the input. I didn't want to be freaking out to my doctor only to have him point out a much less serious condition, as you have. I started to feel tightness in my chest, however, I think it was just the fact that I was panicking about this.
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