question-icon

Suggest remedy for persistent chest pain, shortness of breath and fatigue

default
Posted on Wed, 2 Dec 2015
Question: Hello,

Over the past 7 years, I've had several episodes of pericarditis and chest pain. Symptoms usually last 2-3 days, shortness of breath, chest pain (either on my right or left side of sternum) and lethargy.

I've had many viral tests done as well as autoimmune, ruling out Lupus, Lymes etc... Nothing conclusive. I smoke marijuana 3-4 times a week, however I don't experience any pain during or after smoking. Symptoms will present themselves randomly. I do work a stressful job which might be a contributor. Is there any advice you can provide me? I'm stuck with this idiopathic diagnosis.

Thanks,
XXXXXXX
doctor
Answered by Dr. Naval Mendiratta (2 hours later)
Brief Answer:
Pericarditis

Detailed Answer:
Good evening

Thank you for writing on health care magic

I understand, it can be frustrating carrying the diagnosis of an Idiopathic condition which keeps troubling you over such a long period.

Well, I suppose you have been thoroughly evaluated. There are a few things I would like to know:

1. Have you ever been given a trial of steroids?

2. Did you have a visit to any of the developing countries before you had pericarditis. I belong to XXXXXXX and one of the common causes here is Tuberculosis. So, we normally give a trial of Anti tubercular treatment to most patients with pericarditis, unless proven otherwise

3. Did they repeat your ANAs the 2nd time or was it once only?

Do let me know these queries

For the advise, firstly I will suggest stop smoking marijuana. Even if you dont get a pain after smoking, still it has those components which can trigger a lot of changes in your body which you are unaware of. So, we need to remove the foreign objects which are harmful for our system

Await your reply

REgards
Dr Naval
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Yogesh D
doctor
default
Follow up: Dr. Naval Mendiratta (19 hours later)

1. Have you ever been given a trial of steroids?

Never

2. Did you have a visit to any of the developing countries before you had pericarditis. I belong to XXXXXXX and one of the common causes here is Tuberculosis. So, we normally give a trial of Anti tubercular treatment to most patients with pericarditis, unless proven otherwise

No

3. Did they repeat your ANAs the 2nd time or was it once only?

One ANA test that was negative.

Can smoking cause chest pain? I currently am experiencing pain over the right side of my chest. My heart feels fine.

Thanks,
XXXXXXX
doctor
Answered by Dr. Naval Mendiratta (16 hours later)
Brief Answer:
Pericarditis

Detailed Answer:
Good evening

Sorry for the delayed reply. Was occupied with the festivities in the country

To get a definite diagnosis, Biopsy during the episode would be the ideal way to approach as it will give us an exact idea on what exactly is going on. The only thing is it is an invasive procedure.

But,considering idiopathic pericarditis, it is always worthwhile giving a trial of steroids. It is more of a hit and try basis. Considering recurrent episodes, there is a definite inflammatory component going on. I am suspecting they manage you with anti inflammatory drugs and steroids are the more superior option. SO you can discuss this option out with your cardiologist.

Yes smoking can cause chest pain as it increases the heart rate and the demand for oxygen goes up. And if your pericardium has inflammation going on, it comes more under stress which can cause chest pain. So you should try and quit it.

I hope the information was useful

Do let me know for more queries. Would be happy to help out

PS: Happy Deepavali

Regards
Dr Naval

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
Answered by
Dr.
Dr. Naval Mendiratta

Rheumatologist

Practicing since :2007

Answered : 754 Questions

premium_optimized

The User accepted the expert's answer

Share on
Suggest remedy for persistent chest pain, shortness of breath and fatigue

Brief Answer: Pericarditis Detailed Answer: Good evening Thank you for writing on health care magic I understand, it can be frustrating carrying the diagnosis of an Idiopathic condition which keeps troubling you over such a long period. Well, I suppose you have been thoroughly evaluated. There are a few things I would like to know: 1. Have you ever been given a trial of steroids? 2. Did you have a visit to any of the developing countries before you had pericarditis. I belong to XXXXXXX and one of the common causes here is Tuberculosis. So, we normally give a trial of Anti tubercular treatment to most patients with pericarditis, unless proven otherwise 3. Did they repeat your ANAs the 2nd time or was it once only? Do let me know these queries For the advise, firstly I will suggest stop smoking marijuana. Even if you dont get a pain after smoking, still it has those components which can trigger a lot of changes in your body which you are unaware of. So, we need to remove the foreign objects which are harmful for our system Await your reply REgards Dr Naval