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What causes chest pain and shortness of breath?

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Posted on Thu, 21 May 2015
Question: my chest has been hurting me for several days at first I thought my chest wall could be sore from sleeping on air bed but now it feels like a ice pick in the center slightly to the left above my breast it hurts when I use lots of exertion and I run out of breath really fast like I'm 90 but I'm only 34 ,also I'm a alcoholic and x drug user of heroin crank cocaine I've been clean for about a month from crank cocaine and heroin a few years...I'm working on detoxing my self from acholol but I'm wondering could I be having heart problems that I need too be concerned about due to my history I've been a user since age 15 I'm now 34. I quit using because I decided I was Thur with drugs let's just say "I was sick in tried of being sick and tired" !!
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Answered by Dr. Muhammad Sareer Khalil (2 hours later)
Brief Answer:
Cardiac evaluation needed

Detailed Answer:
Hello and Welcome

I appreciate your concern

A cardiac cause of the chest pain and shortness of breath on exertion needs to be ruled out, first. An EKG and echocardiogram should be done to look for any abnormality. A chest x ray would also be required to assess the rib cage and lungs. Its a good choice on your part to have decided on quitting the drugs you mentioned. I hope you stay strong at it. If the EKG, Echo and Chest X ray are normal then an Ultrasound of the abdomen should be done to look for gall bladder and pancreatic pathology ( based on the alcohol history ). In the meanwhile NSAIDs can be prescribed along with PPIs to empirically look for improvement in chest pain , if its associated with GERD or costochondritis, in consultation with your doctor.

Wishing you best of health

Thanks

Please consult your doctor before deciding on any further course of action.

Dr. M.S. Khalil
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Pradeep Vitta
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Answered by
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Dr. Muhammad Sareer Khalil

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2012

Answered : 2914 Questions

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What causes chest pain and shortness of breath?

Brief Answer: Cardiac evaluation needed Detailed Answer: Hello and Welcome I appreciate your concern A cardiac cause of the chest pain and shortness of breath on exertion needs to be ruled out, first. An EKG and echocardiogram should be done to look for any abnormality. A chest x ray would also be required to assess the rib cage and lungs. Its a good choice on your part to have decided on quitting the drugs you mentioned. I hope you stay strong at it. If the EKG, Echo and Chest X ray are normal then an Ultrasound of the abdomen should be done to look for gall bladder and pancreatic pathology ( based on the alcohol history ). In the meanwhile NSAIDs can be prescribed along with PPIs to empirically look for improvement in chest pain , if its associated with GERD or costochondritis, in consultation with your doctor. Wishing you best of health Thanks Please consult your doctor before deciding on any further course of action. Dr. M.S. Khalil