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Have fluttering feeling above breast close to armpit. EKG normal. Should I be concerned?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2001
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I have been having a fluttering feeling above my left breast, close to my left armpit. I am 37, 5'7" and 283lbs. I recently had an EKG, which was normal. Should I be concerned about this being a heart flutter, even though the EKG didn't pick it up or could it be a muscle spasm?
Posted Thu, 5 Dec 2013 in Hypertension and Heart Disease
Answered by Dr. Michelle Gibson James 21 minutes later
Brief Answer: based on position, muscle more likely Detailed Answer: HI, thanks for using healthcare magic It is possible to have an arrhythmia (abnormal heart rate or rhythm) that is not picked up by an ECG. This is because an ECG only checks for any abnormality that would be present at the time of the examination. If there is an abnormal heart beat and it does not occur at the time of the ECG then it would not be recorded, the change would have to be persistent. If a person is thought to have an arrhythmia and the ECG is normal then the option exists to do a holter. This is essentially a 24 hour ECG. In most cases of arrhythmias, the abnormality is felt in the area around the centre of the chest, it is rare for it to be felt other wise though ever one is different. Based on its location, it is more possible that it is a muscular spasm. You can consider the use of a muscle relaxant to see if it decreases the symptom. If there is no response or there is worsening then you can consider the option of a holter test which would monitor your heart for 24 hours while you conduct your normal daily activities. I hope this helps, feel free to ask any other questions
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