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Can GERD cause chest pain and shortness of breath? What can it be if EKG, stress tests came back normal?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2004
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I have been having chest pains that radiate down my arm ....the chest pains are usually in the ,middle of my chest. But it does move to over my left breast to under the left breast. I also get shortness of breath at times. I also get burning in my back.
I've been to the doctors. My family doctor and cardiologist. I've had 4 ekg's, stress test. wore holter monitor, 2 echocardiograms...all came back normal. My cardiologist said my heart is strong. That I need to see a gastro. I have appt this week for endoscopy but can all this be from GERD?
Posted Sun, 15 Apr 2012 in GERD
 
 
Answered by Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar 1 hour later
Hi,

I am happy that your symptoms are ruled out to be cardiac in origin by a Cardiologist himself.

A mention of age, personal habits would have helped me better.

However other possibilities in the order of importance:
1) GERD
2) PUD ( peptic Ulcer disease)
3) Hiatal hernia

Each of the above can be ruled in or out with further elaboration of history and some leading questions.

Hope I have answered your query. If you have any follow up queries I will be available to answer them.


Disclaimer: The Expert’s advice is provided for general informational purposes only and SHOULD NOT be relied upon as a substitute for sound professional medical advice, as a complete assessment of an individual has not taken place. Please consult your nearest physician before acting on it. The advice is not valid for medico-legal purposes also.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: Can GERD cause chest pain and shortness of breath? What can it be if EKG, stress tests came back normal? 31 minutes later
I am 33 years old. I have been having this pain on and off for about 6-7 months. I am over weight, but have been losing weight due to change in diet.
I do suffer from panic attacks(which began around the same time as these symptoms) NEVER had panic attacks before.
I am a teacher and mother of a 19 month old.
Can the three things you listed above cause shortness iof breath?
Also, Can anxiety cause a heart attack?
 
 
Answered by Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar 15 hours later
Hi Cinamen,

Thanks for the details.

On reading the above and your previous history as well , I can relate the things with the 3 causes which I have listed above.

In individuals who are over weight, a hiatal hernia is more common , this causes a chest discomfort and shortness of breath also.

I may also think of anxiety and panic attacks which are known to cause chest discomfort, shortness of breath, palpitations, which may mimic a heart disease.

Coming to your question: "can anxiety cause a heart attack?"

Anxiety and panic attacks can lead to stress and the sympathetic system which deals with the heart , is activated ,causing palpitations , shortness of breath, sweating,which can affect the heart and put it to stress,if there is an underlying problem with the heart, this may trigger a heart attack.Stress being a significant risk factor for a heart attack.

I hope I was able to help you with your questions .

Wish you good health

Disclaimer: The Expert’s advice is provided for general informational purposes only and SHOULD NOT be relied upon as a substitute for sound professional medical advice, as a complete assessment of an individual has not taken place. Please consult your nearest physician before acting on it. The advice is not valid for medico-legal purposes also.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
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