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Overweight, smoker. Getting palpitation and pain around sternum. Any advice?

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General Surgeon
Practicing since : 2008
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i am overweight, i smoke but have cut down to three cigarettes a day, i notice i get pain around my sternum. its not constant, it feels like bone pain but im not sure, i have also been walking five times a week for one hour at a time as a form of replacement for smoking. some times i also feel like a have palpitations. please advise.
Posted Mon, 11 Mar 2013 in Hypertension and Heart Disease
Answered by Dr. Grzegorz Stanko 14 minutes later

Thank you for the query.

As smoking increases risk of arteriosclerosis, such symptoms should not be neglected as it can be a sign of heart ischemic disease. Moreover, every person who smokes, should have lungs checked every two years to rule out lungs cancer. COPD is also a disease which is caused by smoking and can give shortness of breath and heart palpitations.
You definitely should visit cardiologist and pulmunologist. You should have heart ECG, stress test and heart ultrasound performed. Lungs should be checked with chest CT and spirometry (blow test).

Hope this will help. Feel free to ask further questions.
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Follow-up: Overweight, smoker. Getting palpitation and pain around sternum. Any advice? 52 minutes later
If I stop smoking will the symptoms stop? Or is it too late?
Answered by Dr. Grzegorz Stanko 53 minutes later

All mentioned diseases are caused by constant smoking and can not be reversed by stop smoking. But there is a lot of possibilities to cure it and control it, you just need to take care of it.

Hope this will help.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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