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Stopped smoking. Felt pressure on chest with pain all over body. Any risk of heart attack?

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General Surgeon
Practicing since : 2008
Answered : 5767 Questions
Hi, I have a feeling of pressure on my chest, around the size of a drinks coaster. Its right in the centre slightly above the arch in the top of the rib cage. It only last a few seconds and goes, the longest it has lasted is 2 minutes. I am obese on the scale here in the Uk, I recently gave up smoking (1 month) and have been eating more as a result. I am 32 years of age and don't get much exercise, so Immediately have been concerned that I'm going to have a heart attack. I have had this symptom for 4 days at varying severity's, My neck/jaw/arm does not hurt. I also suffer from GAD and have had pains all over my body as a result so I'm not sure if I should go to the doctor AGAIN as I have done many times or put it down to anxiety.
Thu, 24 Jan 2013 in Heart Attack
Answered by Dr. Grzegorz Stanko 2 hours later

Thank you for the query.

Yes, it can be a result of anxiety. However it can be also caused by lungs disease (especially that you have been smoking) like COPD or even some tumors, larynx disease (also associated with smoking), gastric reflux disease. It does not sound like heart problem, but with your obesity and smoking history, you should have the heart checked as well.
I suggest you to have some diagnostics. Chest CT should be performed (X-rays are not enough), blow test, hear ECG, stress test and upper GI endoscopy. You should also consult laryngologist.
Only after such diagnostics you can put it down to anxiety.

Hope this will help. Feel free to ask further questions.
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