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772216 tn?1259276837

Need Help

I'm not sure if this is where I should post this but I don't know where to either.

I'm almost 18 now and have suffered with severe jointpain for well over 7 years now. Within the last few years my problems have multiplied and I'm scared of what might happen next. I've been to countless doctors and have no answers except for they don't know what I have and can't help me.

Among my long list of problems is chest pain. I have had chest pain for a while now but it's never been this bad before. It usually only lasts for a few seconds to minutes but I've now it's for hours at a time. Last night I had it for about 4 hours before I finally fell asleep, and so far I've now had it for about 6 hours with no relief. It's a sharp, stabbing pain on my left side right around where my heart is and it hurts to breathe or even move much. Right now it's a throbbing pain but if I were to breathe deeper it would become worse.

I'm at a loss as to what I should do as I should do and would welcome any help or advice anyone may have.
11 Responses
535089 tn?1400677119
Hello Lily and welcome to the Pain Forum:

You're so young to have this many problems. With the counless problems and the joint pain most likely comes muscle pain. Joint and muscle pain go hand in hand. Because your experiencing this type of pain, it is most likely your muscles that are hurting you in the chest. You have many chest muscles that can easily be effected.

I say this because you have been to countless doctors who have ruled out the more obvious and serious problem which is your heart. And because of your age, it is most likely not a factor.

Have you told your Doctor about the chest pain? My only other advise to you is to keep at the Doctors. You are your own advocate.

Please take care and good luck with it all. Keep us posted.
547368 tn?1440545385
Hi TigerLily,

Welcome to MedHelp's Pain Management Forum. I am so sorry to hear about your pain, especially at just eighteen. This has been going on far too long and I imagine you are at your wits end as are your parents and physicians.

I think Mollyrae has it right when she says your chest pain is most likely muscle related. Muscle pain can be very painful. I would offer only one question, have you had an echocardiogram? Often that test can reveal cardiac problems that no other can or will reveal. A relative had multiple cardiac tests and it wasn't until a week before her open heart surgery that they preformed a echocardiogram that they discovered she had a hole in her heart. That of course did not cause her significant pain but it was something that needed attention and repair.

I encourage you to continue your search for answers. See new physicians and have repeat tests until you receive an answer that makes sense to you and one that makes you comfortable. If you go outside the clinics that you have seen you may obtain different answers. Have you seen a rheumatoidologist?  

You should not give up. Hang in there and keep searching. Please let us know how you are doing. I will look forward to your updates with interest.
Peace, Tuck

772216 tn?1259276837

I have had muscle in the past, but wouldn't the right side of my chest hurt too instead of just my left? It's never hurt like this before so it could be but I find it weird how only one side would hurt and I don't remember doing anything to make it hurt this bad.

No I haven't had an echocardiogram, I did have an EKG done (I think they're different) but the doctor never got back to me. I didn't have chest pain when it was done either just a fast heartrate, usually between 90 and 150 but it has gone higher.

I have been to a rheumatologist just a few months ago actually and like the other doctors I'd gone to he doesn't have any answers. I saw a few others many years ago but they always said it was growing pains so we stopped going. I've lost count of the number of times I've been to different doctors and yet I still have no answers.I'm planning on seeing an internist sometime in March though and hopefully they will be of more help.

A bit of an update; my chest pain from last night has not gone away and it made it almost impossible to sleep as it hurts worse when I lay down and gets harder to breathe. I only got around 6 hours of sleep and the pain was constantly waking me up.

Thanks for the welcome,
547368 tn?1440545385
Hi Again Lily,

It would seem to make sense that if one side of your chest hurt the other side should also. However muscle pain can act in that manner.

An electrocardiogram, also known as an EKG or ECG, is a non-invasive test to check the electrical activity of your heart. The EKG records heart rhythms. It will reveal abnormalities in rhythm.  It is very different than an echocardiogram but a very useful tool in diagnosis. It adds to the overall evaluation of heart health. An echocardiogram (often called "echo") is a graphic outline of the heart's movement. It is the same type of test that is used to view a fetus. It will outline size, functioning and structure.

However you have added an interesting piece of information. Tachycardia (fast heart rate) is not normal in a young, healthy individual. So my next question is have you seen a cardiologist? If not I would encourage you to see one. If you have seen one I would see a seek a second opinion. Tachycardia can be caused by anxiety but usually not to the degree you describe, meaning 130-150 BPM. It should not be ignored.

Anxiety can also cause some SOA (shortness of air) but this should also be diagnosed. especially as it goes hand in hand with your chest pain. How long has it been since you were evaluated for these symptoms? You are still a minor and I encourage you to discuss your concerns with your parents again. I assume they are well aware of your medical symptoms and I am sure they are concerned. Do not hesitate to impress upon them that your symptoms are worsening. A trip to ER when you are experiencing the height of your symptoms may allow a good "look" when your symptoms are the most prominent.  

Again keep in touch and please let us know how you are doing. Take Care, Tuck
772216 tn?1259276837
Hey Tuck,

Thanks for clearing that up, I always get so confused by these things. Thankfully the chest pain is once again starting to recede and hopefully it won't come back again, unfortunately it does still hurt more than I'd like it to.

I do have some anxiety every now and then but I don't think it's anywhere close to being bad enough to cause the tachycardia as bad as it is. I was supposed to go see a cardiologist that another doctor had recommended to me but the doctor I was seeing at the time said it wasn't necessary.

The last doctor I have seen was the rheumatologist and that was around the end of last year. We told him all of my symptoms then but they have since gotten worse. We have not been able to make it back to another doctor yet and won't be able to for a couple more weeks as my mom had to leave for work. My mom is aware of most of what's going on though I haven't told her how bad it is getting yet as there isn't much she can do right now and I don't want to worry her more than she already is. If my chest pain gets worse or something else happens I do plan on asking her to take me to the hospital as it does scare me and I would like to be sure that it is nothing serious.


547368 tn?1440545385

Your Mom may be busy but I am sure you are her first concern. Nothing is ever as important as our child's health. I do not mean to infer that you are a child but regardless of our age we are always our mother's child.

You are young to be experiencing cardiac symptoms but we forget you do not have to be aged to have a heart issue. It can happen at any age. So do not hesitate to make that appointment with a cardiologist. It will most likely take you several weeks or more to even be seen so a call tomorrow still means a significant wait. Don't slip through the cracks. I would rather all your tests come back normal and you "waste" a bit of time than end up with a serious heart disorder that is made worse because you did not seek medical treatment sooner.

If it is not cardiac related than you have ruled that out as a causative factor for your symptoms. It is than time to continue the search for answers. Be assertive when it comes to your health care. Help your parents, help you by giving them all of the information you have given us.....and more.

A trip to ER is a good idea when you are symptomatic. Alert your parents to your intentions so they are prepared.

I will look forward to your updates with interest. Take care, Tuck
772216 tn?1259276837
I know that I am one of her first concerns and that I will always be her baby no matter how old I get, it never bothered me.

That's true, I know a few people a bit younger and older that me who have had undiagnosed heart conditions and actually died from it. Though if it is a heart condition that I have wouldn't it have done something by now as it has been almost 5 days since it started, or maybe thats just me hoping, I don't know. I am going to see an internist in March so if she thinks it is heart related maybe she will give me a recommendation on who to see.

I have not stopped searching, I'm just at a loss as to where to look now as some things fit but others don't. The pain has not gone away as I had hoped but it has gotten worse again. I think it's as bad if not worse than when it first started.
547368 tn?1440545385
Hi Lily,

Have you thought about a trip to ER if you pain is now worse? It might be a good time to go, accompanied by your Mom of course.

Peace, Tuck
772216 tn?1259276837
Hey Tuck,

She's in Florida til Thursday and there's no one else that can take me so I think I'm stuck til she gets back but I have thought about asking her to take me then if it's still here.

776363 tn?1237393979
I just wanted to know if they have done any xrays of the area? When my husband was 16 he was suffering from chest pain and they found a problem where extra cartlidge was growing into his chest right near his heart. It's genetic but its actually more heard of now then it used to be. He had to have surgery to have it removed and now is fine. I just thought I might mention it to you. Also anxiety or angina can also cause chest pain but it really does sound like it's more severe then that. Good luck and I hope they can figure out whats causing your pain. I cal only imagine how scary not knowing what is causing your pain must be
772216 tn?1259276837
No, I haven't had any done recently but they did x-ray my lungs a couple years ago. I do have some anxiety but I don't believe it's bad enough to cause this, and if it was why would it only be starting now and not earlier?

My chest pain has gone away for now though it does still hurt every now and then and if I do too much so I guess it could have just been muscle pain, all I know is I hope it never feels like that again.

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