Thinking I may be experiencing angina. Wondering if my symptoms may be something entirely different. Frequency has greatly increased and have both individual and family history of cardiovascular issues. But pain is unusual and hoping it might be something like a pinched nerve or something less serious. History: 39 male. smoker. relatively uncontrolled high blood pressure for 15 years, on meds for same. Had some artery issues, a blockage formed/settled in my femoral artery, had fem bypass at 33, then again at 37 (artery filled with scar tissue and some plaque and patch around artery had collapsed replaced with a graft). I have been having these unusual pains. At first they were very infrequent and only in my arm. A tremendous burning deep aching pain unbearable for just a few minutes then went away. Thought it was pinched nerve since i do have back and neck problems. This same exact pain then started presenting itself in my chest and a little to my throat/jaw/left ear. Happened a few times a month, then a few times a week, now several times daily for last few weeks. Wakes me up almost every night/morning, and happens a few time throughout the day without warning. Like I said, this frequency is something new. Only sometimes accompanied by pain in left arm, but almost always accompanied by jaw/ear pain. Only a couple times felt nauseous or out of breath, usually the pain is the only symptom, but I swear it feels like nerve pain because it is so intensely burning and deep. Of course, that begs the question, would I feel it in my chest if it was? Dad died of heart failure in his 40's, mother has heart issues but alive and in her 60's, both sets of grandparents had heart issues as well. So... is there something else that could be causing this? Thanks in advance. And yes, I will be seeing a doctor at some point, just haven't had the time, and I don't want to be one of those guys that goes in for chest pain and it's gas or heartburn, ya know? Speaking of which, I have had nasty heartburn and acid reflux for years, and as much as that sucks, this is an entirely different pain (and worse, if that's possible) and goes away relatively quickly and on it's own.
Additionally, chest pain, stationary or radiating elsewhere, with or w/o accompanying symptoms, has various causes, cardiac and non-cardiac, which includes, but not limited to, pulmonary, gastrointestinal, musculoskeletal, and psychological/psychogenic.
Of the various types of heart conditions, symptoms may/can be acute (occurring suddenly), be chronic (occurring over a long period of time), come and go (be transient, fleeting or episodic) or even be silent.
As reported, smoking increases the circulating levels of catecholamines and free fatty acids, which may contribute to the increased level of total cholesterol and decreased levels of high-density lipoprotein (the good/protective cholesterol) that are found in habitual cigarette smokers.
The effects on platelets may enhance coagulation (blood clotting). There can be accelerated coronary and peripheral vascular disease, and occurrence of a dreaded brain attack and complications from hypertension.
The greatest concern is the acceleration or aggravation of cardiovascular disease. Smoking can promote atherosclerotic vascular disease by contributing to high cholesterol, endothelial injury (damaging the sensitive inner lining of the walls of the arteries), or both.
Complications of hypertension are more severe in those who smoke cigarettes. Smoking can also aggravate hypertension by causing vasoconstriction (narrowing of the vessels).
ALWAYS be proactive in your health care and treatment. Best of luck down the road of life.
Symptoms of artery-narrowing atherosclerosis are highly variable. Those with mild atherosclerosis may present with clinically important symptoms and signs of disease and heart attack, or absolute worst case scenario, sudden cardiac death may be the first and only symptom of coronary artery disease (CAD). However, many individuals with anatomically advanced disease may have no symptoms and experience no functional impairment.
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Good to know, for the primary/secondary prevention of heart attack/brain attack
Risk factors for atherosclerosis (typically affects coronary, carotid, peripheral arteries) includes age, gender, genetics, diabetes, smoking (also secondhand), inactivity, obesity, hypertension, high LDL, high Lp(a), high ApoB, high Lp-PLA2, high triglycerides, low HDL (less than 40 mg/dL, an HDL level of 60/65 mg/dL or more is considered protective against coronary artery disease), high homocysteine, and high C-reactive protein (CRP/hs-CRP).
"Be a questioning patient. Talk to your doctor and ask questions. Studies show that patients who ask the most questions, and are most assertive, get the best results. Be vigilant and speak up!"
- Charles Inlander, People's Medical Society
It's your future....be there. :-)
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so yeah. 90% blocked. 2 stents placed yesterday. glad i decided to go to docs about pain. heart attack was imminent. life is funny. if u r on this page because u have chest discomfort, go to your doctor.
Not so much HaHa funny, but funny as strange and unpredictable and able to change forever in just a moment. Still trying to absorb it all. And yes, I AM fortunate I finally went in... really wasn't going to, but i consulted a friend who is a nurse, and she was adamant that I should call. I did, and two days later I was recovering in a hospital bed.
On second thought... life IS funny in a HaHa sort of way. Embrace that. Enjoy it, smile, laugh... we are all only here for an unbelievably short time.
Eat, drink, and be merry... for tomorrow we die.
Oh. And take care of your health... go to the doctor. Again, if you are here because you think you are experiencing angina, let's just go ahead and assume you are... I'd rather be a hypochondriac than a corpse.
Also, the angina that may come is not much fun. I have tiny almost pinpoint size angina, and knock'em dead double major blocked artery angina.
We probably won't die fast enough, so be merry, but be careful with the eat and drink part. You can enjoy other parts of life a whole lot more if you also implement the lifestyle changes required, to become pain free in a year or so, have almost no limitations, and add 10 or 20 healthy years to your life.
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