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Dr. Andrew Rynne
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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Are tightness in chest, back and left arm signs of heart attack?

Answered by
Dr.
Dr. Benard Shehu

Cardiologist

Practicing since :2004

Answered : 2257 Questions

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Posted on Mon, 6 Jun 2016 in Hypertension and Heart Disease
Question: I am having left arm and back tightness again and now i am feeling like my chest gets tight for a second then goes away. I had a CT angiogram a few weeks ago that came out normal. I have had a lot of ER visits lately too with similar symptoms, but im worried. Could it be a heart attack this time?
doctor
Answered by Dr. Benard Shehu 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
Following advice

Detailed Answer:
Hi and thank you for asking!
I read your query and understood your concerns.

Based on your symptoms and previous examinations (especially cardiac CT angiography) you shouldn't worry about heart attack. Your symptoms aren't typical for heart attack and you had a normal cardiac CT angiography.

Your symptoms are typical for:
- Gastro esophageal reflux disease (GERD or acid reflux)
- Costocondritis and chest muscle damage.

If you were my patients I would recommend as follows:
- Avoid using spicy food
- Drink plenty of waters
- Avoid laying down 2-3 hours after eating
- Use antacids OTC
- Use PPI (prilosec)
- Use advil
This will help to relieve your symptoms.

Hope this will be of help!
Wish you health!
Dr. Shehu
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Benard Shehu 19 hours later
Thanks. It is frustrating having mystery left side tightness and other symptoms of heart disease. I know that my doctors have ruled it out but it is so difficult accept when i dont have an actual diagnosis. I will go back to my pcp soon so that he can hopefully diagnose me with gerd or muscle problems .
doctor
Answered by Dr. Benard Shehu 7 hours later
Brief Answer:
Following advice

Detailed Answer:
Hi back,

Yes you should schedule soon an appointment with your PCP to find out what is causing your symptons. Once that cardiac problems were excluded I would recommend to do upper endoscopy, abdominal ultrasound and chest x-ray to find out the exact diagnosis.

Wish you health!
Dr. Shehu
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Benard Shehu 22 minutes later
Do you think the testing thus far had been sufficeint to eliminate cardiac causes? That is my biggest concern .
doctor
Answered by Dr. Benard Shehu 19 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Following advice.

Detailed Answer:
Hi back,

Yrs the test you have done have excluded cardiac problems. You shouldn't worry about cardiac issues.

Wish you health!
Dr. Shehu
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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