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What causes pain on left side of chest?

Answered by
Dr. Ilir Sharka


Practicing since :2001

Answered : 6427 Questions

Posted on Tue, 20 Oct 2015 in Hypertension and Heart Disease
Question: Hi Doctor,

I have a chest pain on the left side starting yesterday and it is persistent and is heavy. My heart rate is normal 67-78 and I checked it multiple time.

The pain is on the left side and I am worried, when I press the abdomen I feel the pain vanish a bit. I didn't do any lifting or anything and some time I feel the pain on my back.

Do you think there is something to worry, I will go see a doctor as well.
Answered by Dr. Ilir Sharka 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
Your symptoms don't seem to be cardiac related.

Detailed Answer:

Thank you for asking on HCM!

I understand your concern, and would explain that your symptoms don't seem to be cardiac related.

So don't panic about it!

Have you checked your blood pressure?

Is your pain modulated by respiration or body movements? These characteristics (a prolonged chest pain, modulated by palpation) are typical of extra cardiac pain (musculo-skeletic, pleural inflammation, esophageal spasm, etc.).

Do you have heart burn coupled with burping, especially when lying down? Esophagitis and gastro esophageal reflux could be the cause of this symptomatology.

A back bone disorder, causing irradiating pain could explain the back pain too.

I would recommend consulting with your GP for a careful physical examination, a resting ECG, cardiac enzymes, a chest x ray study, an abdominal ultrasound and some blood lab tests:

- complete blood count
- inflammation tests (PCR, sedimentation rate)
- kidney and liver function tests, etc.

If suspicions are raised for a GERD (gastro-esophageal reflux) or a hiatal hernia, a GI endoscopy should be performed.

After all the above tests result normal, a thoracic spine x ray study, followed by a spine CT scan should be performed to rule in/out a back bone disorder (like a disk displacement), if suspicions are raised during the physical examination.

You need to consult with your doctor about the above mentioned issues.

Meanwhile, I would recommend trying painkillers (ibuprofen or acetaminophen). If your pain is relieved by these drugs, this would be a strong argument in favor of a musculo-skeletal disorder.

Hope to have been of help!

Feel free to ask any other questions, whenever you need!

Best regards,

Dr. Iliri

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
Follow up: Dr. Ilir Sharka 6 minutes later
I took antacid/gasex and the pain is gone. I think it was gastric.
Answered by Dr. Ilir Sharka 10 minutes later
Brief Answer:
A gastro esophageal disorder is possible in this situation.

Detailed Answer:
Hello again!

I agree with you that this fact raises strong suspicions for a gastro esophageal disorder (esophagitis, gastritis, gastro esophageal reflux or just a dyspeptic disorder).

I would recommend avoiding caffeine and spicy foods in the next days.

PPIs like omeprazole, pantoprazole etc. would be very helpful in such a situation.

If your problems persist, I would recommend consulting with a gastro-enterologist and perform a GI endoscopy, to rule in/out the above mentioned disorders.

Hope to have been of help!

I am at your disposal for further questions, whenever you need!

Best wishes,

Dr. Iliri
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar

The User accepted the expert's answer

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