One of the more common reasons for a visit to a doctor or the emergency room is chest pain. Despite being a highly prevalent symptom, chest pain in most cases is not a worrisome issue, although you should give the doctor a visit in case. Since several diseases or conditions can cause chest pain, it is difficult to determine the cause of the pain. Chest pain can be a result of any medical condition, from temporary anxiety to something as serious as a heart attack.
As mentioned before, chest pain can be caused by several medical issues, including:
· Heart-related conditions: Several health complications such as a heart attack or angina can be the primary source of chest pain. The good thing about such chest pain is that it is significantly different from the normal chest pain, so a person can detect when they are experiencing a heart attack – allows them to call for help. A heart attack is characterized by pain spreading to the neck, arms, and other parts of the body, makes the chest feel heavy, causes shortness of breath, and lasts more than 15 minutes. If, at any point, you think you are having a heart attack, immediately rush to the doctor or call a nearby ambulance.
· Gut complications: A few gut conditions can be responsible for chest pain at times like heartburn or acid reflux. These are usually not a major concern for health and are temporary – mostly experienced after drinking a hot drink. More serious gut complications include inflammation of gall bladder or pancreas and kidney stones. These gut complications are characterized by constant chest pain regularly, so if you are experiencing chest pain over some days or weeks, visit a doctor.
· lung-related diseases: Lung-related diseases such as pneumonia or bronchitis can also cause chest pain. These diseases and the subsequent chest pain are ordinarily found in smokers since the lungs get damaged, leading to difficulty in respiratory function. The best way to relieve chest pain from these diseases is by simply quitting smoking.
·Muscle or bone issues: Chest pain can, at times, be caused by broken or bruised ribs and compression of a nerve in the respiratory system. These injuries occur in people who play sports and can be treated over time.
Diagnosis to determine the exact origin of chest pain can be difficult due to the wide array of possibilities and causes. The following tests are ideally used to test several areas that affect the chest and give rise to pain:
· ECG or EKG – detects heart activity
· Blood tests – measures enzyme levels
· MRI of several body parts
· Full chest X-ray
· Stress tests – helps clarify if a panic attack or anxiety caused chest pain
· Echocardiogram – inspects the heart’s movements
Chest pain and its causes are tough to self-treat, so you must visit a professional or doctor to relieve chest pain. Some treatments offered to minimize chest pain include:
· Medicines like nitro-glycerine help open blockages in the respiratory system or heart which reduces pain
· Re-inflation of lungs to provide breathing in closed or collapsed lungs
· Anti-anxiety or pain medicines help treat chest pain related to stress
· Antacids can relieve chest pain symptoms related to gut complications (heartburn and acid reflux)
If the chest pain has been caused by a more significant health issue like pneumonia, treating the problem through surgery or other procedures can eliminate chest pain in the long run.
Overall, chest pain can be caused by a range of health complications, but in most reported cases, the chest pain is temporary and not serious. Still, you should be cautious with chest pain and visit a doctor as at times, it can be indicative of major health issues. If you encounter a more intense and new kind of chest pain, then immediately rush to the doctor or call an ambulance as it can be a sign of a heart attack or any other serious condition.