5 Causes of Chest Pain That Aren’t a Heart Attack

Chest pains can be scary, understandably—and you should definitely call 911 if you think you’re in cardiac arrest—but some types of chest pains may have nothing at all to do with your heart.

Heartburn

Severe heartburn may cause a person to wonder in a panic, “Am I having a heart attack?” The symptoms may be confusing, and if you have any doubt, call 911. If, however, you are not at risk for heart attack, and you have reason to believe that the pain you are experiencing is from acid in your esophagus, try taking an antacid. This should soothe the burning pain of indigestion.

Shingles

Another possible cause of chest pain is shingles, according to Kristine Arthur, MD, an internist at Orange Coast Memorial Medical Center in Fountain Valley, California. Shingles, which are a resurgence of the chicken pox virus in the body, can cause severe pain that radiates around one side of the rib cage. Usually there is a significant rash, however, in some cases, it’s so small that people may not see it. According to Dr. Arthur, “You should suspect shingles if the pain follows the line of a rib and if there are any type of skin changes along the area that hurt. It is almost always only on one side.”

Pancreatitis

Typically, pancreatitis causes abdominal pain, according to Medicine Net, but pain from pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas, a long flat gland behind the stomach), can radiate into the chest, causing the sufferer to think that the problem is heart-related. You’ll need a medical workup to determine the cause of the pain, as blood work and medical imaging can help your doctor make the proper diagnosis.

Panic attack

Many times a person believing they are having a heart attack is in fact having a panic attack, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America. Tightening of the chest, heart palpitations, sweaty palms, lightheadedness—these are all symptoms of both. For people suffering from panic disorders, it is a good idea to have a doctor evaluate your heart health, so the next time a panic attack occurs, you will know how to address it without worrying that you’re having a heart attack. Regardless, if there is any doubt during such an attack, go to the ER.

Costochondritis

Another possible cause of chest pain that is not a heart attack is costochondritis. According to Dr. Arthur, this is a condition where the cartilage between the ribs becomes inflamed. “The pain can be very sharp and hurt if you take a deep breath. Although it can be present on both sides, it is usually worse on one side,” Dr. Arthur says. A good way to tell if your chest pain may be costochondritis is to lift your arms above your head and see if the pain gets worse, versus heart attack pain, which will persist regardless of motion.

Facebook
Twitter
WhatsApp
Pinterest
Reddit
Delicious
LinkedIn
Facebook
Twitter
WhatsApp

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

READ NEXT

5 Shocking Reasons Your Hair Is Thinning

Losing your hair can change your life in many ways. According to the American Hair Loss Association, around two-thirds of men will begin to lose their hair by age 35.

4 Signs You Have an Electrolyte Imbalance

You may have heard about getting electrolytes from sports drinks. Well, electrolytes are actually minerals—sodium, potassium, chloride, magnesium, calcium, phosphate, bicarbonate—that dissolve in the body’s fluids, creating electrically charged ions.

5 Signs You Are Eating Way Too Much Sugar

The temptation it’s big when we are in a shop with cookies, candies and sweets, anything that has sugar. We can’t avoid sugar, it’s everywhere. Sugar it’s addictive and probably

9 Reasons Why Your Shoulder Hurts

There are many different medical reasons for your shoulder pain. From osteoarthritis to heart problems—yes, you read that correctly—shoulder pain is annoying no matter the root cause. Aging is the

8 Reasons You Need To Stop Watching The News

We can’t remember when was the last time we watched so much news ever since the pandemic started. There were an election, a pandemic, continuous and diverse protests, and it

Try These Tips to Get Rid of Your Headache!

A headache is a very common condition that causes pain and discomfort in the head, scalp, or neck. It’s estimated that 7 in 10 people have at least one headache

This Is What Experts Do to Prevent Cancer

Cancer is the second leading cause of death among men. And while there have been lots of medical advancements towards treating some kind and boosting survival, there is still lots

Mirror Effect-Cause of Dyslexia

French scientists discovered a physiological difference between the eyes of those who have dyslexia and those who don’t. It’s all about the fovea, the center of a region, which is

9 Common Things That Can Trigger Lupus

Lupus is an autoimmune disease that causes the body’s immune system to attack its own organs and tissues. “What is lupus” is a more difficult question than you might think

5 Ridiculous Myths About the Flu

What you need to know about the Flu Shot: The flu vaccine is the first and the best way to protect yourself against the flu, but if you are severely

These Medications Can Cause Weight Gain

When your doctor puts you on a prescription medication, reading the list of potential side effects can be daunting. While it may be tempting to ignore that fine print completely—after

This List of Symptoms May Signal a Nut Allergy

Skin reactions Mild skin reactions of nut allergies often include: rashes swelling of the extremities redness and tenderness hives Antihistamines such as diphenhydramine (Benadryl) or loratidine (Claritin) can help relieve

Scroll to Top