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My Turn Again for Some Help!


Deb
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I have been having that awful chest pain again. It feels like something pressing against my chest with the weight of an elephant, and periodically a pain shoots up my right side into my armpit. Sometimes it feel like I can't breathe. And now I have a splitting headache. The pain seems to be moving up into my shoulders and neck and down to my arms. I have never had the chest pain this bad. I don't know if I should call a doctor or wait. I think Nina, aka Mighty Mouse, wrote once that she sees a doctor if a new symptom lasts longer than three days. I go so often anyway, that I just hate going if there isn't anything that can be done.

Any advice? Does anyone know of anything that can relieve it? :angry:

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deb, you need to see a doctor for this. anything that concerns chest pain should be evaluated. angina can be atypical for women, not the classic stuff you always hear about. it could be anything from gallbladder to heart, but should not be messed with. rather to go and feel foolish, but then what's new, than to let it go and find out you shouldn't have. good luck! morgan

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Thanks for the advice Morgan and Jackie. I started to feel a whole lot better around 2:00, so I didn't call the doctor. I felt normal by the time I went home, and I had a very restful sleep last night.

I have an appointment on the 22nd with my Neuro, and I'll talk to him about it then unless I get the bad pain again. I don't have a cardiologist that I see regularly, so I think I'll ask for a referral. I find it hard to know which doctor to call when I don't feel well. My PCP doesn't know much about POTS, and I'm trying to find another one that does. The Neurologists only will see me for the POTS, but if it's anxiety (caused by the POTS), then I have to see the psychiatrist. When I go to the ER, it is such an awful ordeal that I have been reluctant to go back. I was there seven times in three months. I'm sure the worry of the pain was making the anxiety worse, too. It's such a vicious cycle with POTS. I think it would be so much easier to deal with the other POTS symptoms if I didn't react so dramatically to every stresser. I know some of you have symptoms that are so much worse than mine, but every time I have a bad episode, I react like its the first time. It can be so darn scary.

Well, that's enough for now. I'll let you know what the neuro and cardiologist say. Thanks again, Deb

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deb, glad the pain got better but know what you mean. i am pretty much used to all this stuff, but when something new crops up, i just wig! i can't help it, no matter how much i tell myself it's just this or that, i still wig. i hate er's too, some not so pleasant experiences, but again you shouldn't mess around with chest pain ever. they are getting much better at listening to women and starting to treat them as aggressively as men (never thought i'd see the day :o ) and as i said, women's pain can be totally different than a man's. take care and find a good cardiologist. if you have palpitations and stuff i recommend an electrophysiologist, because regular cardiologists don't really deal with our type of arrythmias. best, morgan (lots of deb's on here, so will keep morgan, we must all be in same age bracket :) . morgan

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You should have it checked out for peace of mind. Two years ago I was hospitalized when this first started with horrible chest pain--I was even given morphine for it. However a week later I was discharged without an explanation for my incapacitiating symptoms and it took almost a year to be diagnosed with NCS, when I really have POTS which was confirmed at NIH this past January. I finally got a 24 hour holter monitor this past December and have been much more at peace with myself when I do get the chest pain, which is not uncommon with POTS patients.

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Guest Julia59

I know a lot of us DO get chest pains for many different reasons. Chest pain should not be over looked by any doctor. It should be taken very seriously, and any heart related things should be ruled out first.

My husband had chest pain for several weeks---same kind of pain your talking about. Of course HE was taken seriously at the ER---and they check for heart realted things. He was given a stress test with contrast image of his arteries.

It turned out to be acid reflux---and he now takes nexium. His chest pain went away. A good majority of us have digestive issues---eaither motilty problems or acid reflux, IBS, and so on. They tried to give me acid blockers in the beginning of my POTS and it just made things worse. I take and antacid when needed for acid becuase it turned out that reflux was secondary to slow motility.

In my husbands case---he can't go without the nexium or the chest pain come back instantly. It sound like he has some scarring. He may have let it go to long not realizing he had reflux issues. He didn't get help until the chest pain hit.

Acid reflux can be tricky---and it can scar your esophagus if left untreated.

i would start by getting your heart checked first, then check for acid reflux. Our PCP just gave him the nexium and it worked, so no testing was done--i.e. endoscopy. He may still have one done just to make sure there was no excess scarring.

Julie :0)

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Yep, I'm the one with the rule about when to go to the doc...I call on the 4th day. It's possible your pain isn't POTS related; maybe neurological? Keep that neuro appointment and at least get it checked out.

Nina

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Thanks for all of your replies. I made an appointment with the cardiologist I saw when I was in the hospital being testing to see what autonomic problem I have. I liked him a lot, and he got me in the end of next week. I had all the tests that are normally done to rule out heart disease, so the likelihood that it's a heart attack is pretty slim. But the pain was so bad that I just kept focusing on it. I know that I shouldn't, it's just so hard when you're hurting. This sounds pretty silly now, but I kept thinking that I was going to die right before my birthday (which is today). I probably made it worse. I am going to keep my appointment to see my neurologist and discuss this with him, along with seeing the cardiologist. I let you know what they say.

Thanks again, Deb

Morgan/Debbie, There are a lot of Debs. I had three is my class when I was going to grade school and high school. I work with two others right now. I think that most of the Debs I know are late thirties to late forties or a little older. I'm 47, today!

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