Causes of chest pain – What could they mean

Chest pain is an uncomfortable feeling of pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain. Associated symptoms of chest pain may include pain or discomfort in arms, back, neck, jaw and can even radiate up to stomach. It often leads shortness of breath, cold sweat, feeling of nausea and lightheadedness.

Let us look at some of the common causes of chest pain:

  • Myocardial Infraction
    The medical name for heart attack, this is one of the common thoughts people arrive at when they experience chest pain. Heart attack is the reduction of blood flow through blood vessels in the heart that cause the death of heart muscle cells. It is a crushing pain that usually radiates in the center or the left side of the chest. The symptoms might include sweating, nausea, shortness of breath weakness that is accompanied by the pain.
  • Coronary Artery Disease (CAD)
    It is a blockage in the blood vessels that reduces the blood flow and thus the oxygen to the heart muscle. This condition eventually leads to heart attack. Although, it does not cause a permanent damage to the heart, the person may feel chest pain radiating from the heart and spreading through the arms, shoulder, jaw, and even back pain. Also called as Angina, it is triggered by exercise, excitement, or emotional distress. It can however be relieved by rest.
  • Myocarditis
    It is one of the causes of chest pain that occurs due to heart muscle inflammation. Myocarditis causes fever, fatigue, increased heart rate, and trouble in breathing. It does not indicate any blockage, even though its symptoms resemble those of a heart attack.
  • Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy
    It is a genetic disease that causes the heart muscle to grow thick abnormally. It leads to problems such as blood flow out of the heart. This type of chest pain causes shortness of breath. It occurs overtime due to over exercising. Since, the heart muscles become very thick, it makes the blood pump faster. The symptoms of cardiomyopathy include dizziness, lightheadedness, fainting.
  • Mitral valve prolapses
    It is a condition in which the heart valves fail to close completely. This is another one of the most common causes of chest pain. Some other symptoms like palpitations, dizziness is associated with this condition. A person might also not experience any of these symptoms if the prolapse is mild.

If you are suffering from any of these symptoms, and if they are frequent, it is advisable to see a doctor who will diagnose the cause of chest pain and provide medications and treatments accordingly.

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