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Dr. D. Love
Dr. D. Love, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 19461
Experience:  Family Physician for 10 years; Hospital Medical Director for 10 years.
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Good morning, My question is probably a very common one but

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Good morning,
My question is probably a very common one but is causing me some anxiety at the moment.
It relates to heart issues and if I'm experiencing early heart attack signs.
I am 37 years old. I smoke around 20 cigarettes a day and have done for 20 years.
I also drink around 3 to 4 pints of lager every night for the past 10 years or so.
However, I am slim, 6'3 and 80kg and until recently have been very physically active all of my life. On average working out for 30 minutes a day of intense exercise coupled with an active job and hobbies.
There is relatively little family history of heart disease except my father who passed away aged 62 and also smoked heavily.
I eat healthily 3 meals a day usually grilled white meats, fish and vegetables and salads.
I tend to focus on any chest pains recently and my symptoms over the past frw weeks have been this..
Slight ache in my sternum sometimes left and sometimes right of centre around 3 inches higher than my solar plexus.
This can most often be pinpointed in location. I also get pains in my left arm and tricep as well as my shoulder and neck.
I have previously been diagnosed with a trapped nerve in my neck however.
The pains in chest and shoulder are not sinultaneous but just nag at me on average 5 or more times a day and do not stay for more than 10 minutes.
I do not get breathless at the same time but I do get extremely anxious which compounds my problem.
Additionally during recent emotional stress such as fearful thoughts or arguments I get a similar pain in my chest centre on the left side which is very brief and i would estimate a 2 to 3 iut of 10 on a pain scale.
I have been to a&e 3 years ago with a similar complaint and nothing was found.
How worried should I be with these symptoms as I am anxious and keep taking my heart rate and blood pressure to try and reassure myself..which incidentally is around 70bpm and 130/82 on average.
I also have a cholesterol level of 5.1.
Many thanks for any advice or information you can provide.
Hello from JustAnswer.

There are different perspectives when we discuss chest pain.

In a 37 year old male, it is most likely that chest pain such as you describe is not due to heart disease, even with the smoking history that you have. However, from the description of symptoms alone, the possibility of heart disease cannot be completely excluded. Although there are several possible causes of chest pain, we routinely first address whether chest pain is due to heart disease, even if it is unlikely, because chest pain from heart disease is the one cause that has the greatest potential for adverse outcomes if not addressed in a timely manner.

So, the issue is not how worried someone should be about chest pain, as that would imply that we would only consider an evaluation for heart disease in someone that the clinical history is more worrisome for heart disease. It would be appropriate for someone with the chest pain that you describe to be seen for an evaluation. It will likely again say that no heart disease is resent, but it still is appropriate to be seen for that evaluation.

If I can provide any further information, please let me know.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

In your professional opinion, were I to present with a history of a chronic anxiety disorder over a number of years and that I had previously had a number of ecg monitor tests presenting at a&e. Would you be inclined tosay that my current intermittent aches were more likely due to anxiety?

Kind regards

Yes, it is more likely that your current symptoms are related to anxiety.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Many thanks Dr.

I hope you enjoy the rest of your weekend.

Kind regards


You are welcome. I hoe that everything goes well.

If I have answered all your questions, please remember to provide a positive rating.
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