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Pain in left chest and shoulder, palpitation, shortness of breath. 44 yr old, feel it's perimenopause. Can it be ?

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I am 44 and feel I am in perimenopause, though I have not been diagnosed. I have been having pain in my left chest and shoulder. Sometimes the pain has an element of numbness. I also sometimes have palpitations and feel short of breath. I was diagnosed with PVCs when I was nineteen and have had them off and on since, sometimes for long periods of time before they stop, like months. I had a holter monitor done 5 years ago. And it came out fine. What should I do now?
Posted Wed, 13 Jun 2012 in Women's Health
Answered by Dr. Anil Grover 2 hours later
Thank you for writing in.
You have two issues a. whether you are peri menopausal and could that be responsible for symptoms like chest pain. Secondly, b. Long standing rhythm disturbances. Taking your first issue first, I would suggest you see your gynecologist so that your menopause when it starts can be planned under guidance. Chest pain radiating to shoulder(s) at any age above 40 concerns me. I would like to know whether it is related to exertion or only occurs after food intake; whether or not it is associated with sweating, shortness of breath or any other symptoms. If you have started to gain weight and/or your blood pressure readings tend to be high then you must see your doctor who after physical examination can suggest lipid profile and possibly a Tread Mill Test. We ought to be concerned in looking for risk factors for coronary heart disease, some of which go side by side with hormonal changes which begin to occur at this stage of life. The second issue:
b. You can calculate that your heart beats for about 100,000 times a day (72 x 60 x 24), a small percent of beats can be erratic that is normal. These manifested as PVC's first noticed 25 years ago and your Holter done every five years had been normal. This is absolutely benign phenomenon and occurs in possible everyone, it is that you are more perceptive. Moreover, hormonal changes with menopause are not going to have any adverse effect on these.
I hope I have addressed your concerns. I will be available for follow ups.
Best Wishes.

Dr Anil Grover
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