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I am a smoker. Doing exercise. Having pain in chest and feeling skipped beats from heart. Any ideas?

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Practicing since : 1981
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Can cutting back from a pack a day of cigs to about four a day as a measn to quit cause cheats pain, skipped beats from heart? I use to smoke a lot but exercised 5 times a week, (ran three times a week and lifted weights) worried that idid damage to my ticker. 36 years old 5' 11" tall and weight 165 pounds. Any ideas?
Posted Mon, 20 Aug 2012 in Smoking and Alcohol Addiction
Answered by Dr. Anil Grover 2 hours later
Hi there,
Thanks for writing in.
I am qualified and certified cardiologist and I read your mail with diligence.
Let me congratulate is apparently winning battle against the last drug you had been taking. Well, smoking cigarettes was last series what I read you did in slightly younger age, I am referring to coke and meth. I hope those days are over; a day will come you will say final good bye to those 4 cigarettes you still take will become zero. Yes cutting the cigarettes to the least number (best is 0) per day will certainly cut down a significant risk factor of heart disease (those chest pains, skipped beats). There are other risk factors too and it is the right age, 35 Yr, to have a look at those. The risk factors are:

Diabetes +/-
Smoking* (till you maintain zero for a year the risk continues though reduced)
Obesity and Sedentary Life Style+/- (some suggestion at about exercise after this)
High Bad Cholesterol and Lipid Component +/-
Total Cholesterol above 190 mg%, LDL above 130 mg%, VLDL above 40 mg%,
Triglycerides above 150 mg%, Apolipoprotein B above reference value
Low Good Cholesterol and Lipid Component: +/-
Apolipoprotein a below reference range for the lab and
HDL below 40 mg% for man & and 50 mg% for woman
Family History 0f Coronary Heart Disease +/-
Increasing age*
Being a Man (as opposed to women) till the age 45*

From the list, above you have some risk factors. Smoking, being a man and increasing age has been identified. Therefore, I will strongly recommend consulting your doctor; he may complete the list as well do the EKG / TMT to find out target organ damage due to hypertension.
It is never too late to change your heart -ticker as you call it. Everything you do will have to be under (distant, not someone standing by you while you exercise) supervision. It need not be cardiologist but your primary doctor can guide your way back to health - I am happy to read the way you decided about smoking. You may need drugs and he/she (or ask the dietitian) to advise you about diet low in calories and cholesterol, advise you on quantum of exercise. You ought to keep your weight under control for you do not want other attack. If you like non vegetarian you cannot take red meat but there is no bar (in taking certainly quantity had to be less) on egg white, roasted chicken and roasted fish.
Exercise: Brisk walk at the speed of 5 KM/Hr for 40 minutes per day every day is enough aerobic exercise you need for keeping your heart healthy; weights you count as exercise but more effect on muscle building and if you are actually have skipped beats and or chest pain a doctor should clear this form of exercise. Good Luck. If there is any point which need clarification, I will be only to happy to answer. Regards.
With Best Wishes
Dr Anil Grover,
Medical Specialist & Cardiologist
M.B.;B.S, M.D. (Internal Medicine) D.M.(Cardiology)
http://www/ WWW.WWWW.WW
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