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I have aching left chest pain and tingling and numbness

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Posted on Wed, 6 Feb 2019
Question: I have aching left chest pain and tingling and numbness in my left arm from the shoulder to the fingers. Also some dull pain in my back at a level that would be like mid clavicular if it were in the front chest. Additionally fragrances and mostly all cleaning solutions cause me chest pain, dizziness. headache, nausea, sore throat,euphoria, tingling in mostly my left hand and fingers. To a lesser extent I`m also effected by insecticides and vehicle exhaust. Any clues?
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Answered by Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh (49 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
Thoughts on this

Detailed Answer:
Hello and welcome,

Some of your symptoms may be associated and some might be separate. Here are a few thoughts:

1. "fragrances and mostly all cleaning solutions cause me chest pain, dizziness. headache, nausea, sore throat,euphoria, tingling in mostly my left hand and fingers. To a lesser extent I`m also effected by insecticides and vehicle exhaust."

This is some type of immune dysfunction and I can tell you there isn't much understood about it. Some doctors will say it's something psychological, others believe there is some underlying problem but we just don't understand it yet. I am in agreement with the latter interpretation. If you look up information form the chronic fatigue community, you will find people who have a variety of common manifestations like this.

There are also people who suffer from standard (IgE mediated) allergies and respiratory sensitivities that describe these same symptoms when exposed.

So there isn't any definitive understanding of what is going on and why. Mostly, avoidance is what we know to do for it.

People with some autoimmune disorders can have some of these symptoms too. How have you been evaluated so far? Do you get fevers? Do you recall a certain event after which you started to get these symptoms?



2. "I have aching left chest pain and tingling and numbness in my left arm from the shoulder to the fingers. Also some dull pain in my back at a level that would be like mid clavicular if it were in the front chest."

This may be something else from #1. Aching left chest pain, if it feels like pressure or squeezing, should be looked into promptly because it may be cardiac in nature - the heart not getting enough blood/oxygen. However, depending on the location, it can be due to other things too: neuro-musculoskeletal (which can explain the tingling and numbness) would be high on my list.


Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Nagamani Ng
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Follow up: Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh (3 days later)
Yes I was evaluated by a Dr. that spray something while my vitals were being monitored. My heart did increase and my breathing rate did increase but nothing else. I do not get fevers but I do get night sweats. Sometimes I feel hot but my temp is normal. Yes I recall when I 1st got real sick. I was at a school where I worked and someone sprayed Lysol and I got so sick and dizzy that I got to my car and had to wait for approximately 30 minutes till my head cleared so I could drive home. YES I also agree with you that this could have a neuro-skeletal muscular component because I got squeezed real hard wresling and the next day my neck was swollen and I had neck pain. Also I have had a tibial osteotomy in 1995 and the left leg is a little shorter that the right leg by about 1 inch or so. My hip is dropped lower than the other. When I try to put lifts on my foot to make up the difference it causes pain in my affected knee so I do not do that very often. Furthermore , I was once a fire fighter, I used to smoke cigerets, cigars etcetera, weed(marijuana.) and free base cocaine. No longer of course. HELP?
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Follow up: Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh (5 minutes later)
My vitals are within normal limits at this time.
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Answered by Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh (3 hours later)
Brief Answer:
Thoughts on this

Detailed Answer:
For the back/shoulder/arm symptoms, depending on how your health care system works. I would advise that you see your primary care doctor first. It's possible that there is some type of neuropathy going on. Your doctor will examine your shoulder and may recommend either imaging tests or an EMG if she/he thinks there may be nerve impingement.

Regarding the sore throat, etc, after exposure to chemicals, I've been told by allergists I've worked with that chemical sensitivities are something everyone has, just that we have different thresholds for the level our bodies start to react. Many people have problems just walking down the detergent and cleaning products aisle at the grocery store. I am not sure who would be best for you to see for this. You might want to try an experienced allergist, not that the reactions to chemicals is an allergy, but that they have some experience treating irritant rhinitis and can also evaluate your breathing.


Dr Bonnie
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Vaishalee Punj
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Answered by
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Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :1991

Answered : 3138 Questions

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I have aching left chest pain and tingling and numbness

Brief Answer: Thoughts on this Detailed Answer: Hello and welcome, Some of your symptoms may be associated and some might be separate. Here are a few thoughts: 1. "fragrances and mostly all cleaning solutions cause me chest pain, dizziness. headache, nausea, sore throat,euphoria, tingling in mostly my left hand and fingers. To a lesser extent I`m also effected by insecticides and vehicle exhaust." This is some type of immune dysfunction and I can tell you there isn't much understood about it. Some doctors will say it's something psychological, others believe there is some underlying problem but we just don't understand it yet. I am in agreement with the latter interpretation. If you look up information form the chronic fatigue community, you will find people who have a variety of common manifestations like this. There are also people who suffer from standard (IgE mediated) allergies and respiratory sensitivities that describe these same symptoms when exposed. So there isn't any definitive understanding of what is going on and why. Mostly, avoidance is what we know to do for it. People with some autoimmune disorders can have some of these symptoms too. How have you been evaluated so far? Do you get fevers? Do you recall a certain event after which you started to get these symptoms? 2. "I have aching left chest pain and tingling and numbness in my left arm from the shoulder to the fingers. Also some dull pain in my back at a level that would be like mid clavicular if it were in the front chest." This may be something else from #1. Aching left chest pain, if it feels like pressure or squeezing, should be looked into promptly because it may be cardiac in nature - the heart not getting enough blood/oxygen. However, depending on the location, it can be due to other things too: neuro-musculoskeletal (which can explain the tingling and numbness) would be high on my list.