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 Post subject: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 8:37 pm 
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Hoards Peppermint Jo-Jos
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I went out earlier today to walk around when my sister came to visit, and I was fine. Then, two hours later when I'm on my way to get lunch, I can barely make a move without fighting this intense, throbbing /sometime shooting pain in my left chest, feeling just around the underside and sides of my breast. It traveled to the center, then to the right earlier tonight. I've already taken 200 mg of Ibuprofen, as per my boyfriend's father's recommendation, because it's Saturday night and there are no doctors offices open for me to go. ER is the absolute last resort.

As a bit of history, I recently went to the doctor and was referred to a cardiologist after my EKG came up with an irregular-short PR interval, if that rings a bell. I went to this doctor on campus for just what I thought was an anemia-induced fatigue, but was asked to get an EKG because it seemed (and was) a problem with my heart.

I'm a little worried, but mostly because all of my health issues have been a series of GI issues with my stomach, but now things are happening near my heart and my lungs, so I am a little bit more weary, but trying to be wise and not panic (which of course in this situation would not only be of no help, but make things worse).

I usually ask my dad what to do, but really don't want to worry him, and I don't think he'd know about this anyway. Should I go to the ER? It's been an hour since taking the IBP, and nothing has changed.


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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 8:53 pm 
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Does your insurance provide you with a nurses helpline or someone else you could call to get medical advice?

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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 9:02 pm 
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Dr Bronners, MD
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Most doctors have an answering service where you can call their office and ask for advice and they'll page the doctor and see what they say.

If you've had a bad EKG and have heart problems and are now having chest pains, you should probably not think of the ER as so much of a last resort any more. You may have lost that luxury when that test came back with poor results.

Please call your doctor's office (or your insurance nurse line or whatever-- if you call your doctor's office, they will usually have a voice mail message giving a number to call if it's an emergency. If they do, call that number.). Prepare an overnight bag while you wait for the call back so you can leave for the ER immediately if they recommend you do so.

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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 9:38 pm 
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solipsistnation wrote:
If you've had a bad EKG and have heart problems and are now having chest pains, you should probably not think of the ER as so much of a last resort any more. You may have lost that luxury when that test came back with poor results.


I don't understand the specifics you gave or anything, but I feel the same as solipsistnation.

Scary stuff. I hope you're feeling better.

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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 9:52 pm 
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Yes, go to the ER! The ER may have a hot,one you can call first, but I bet they'd tell you to go.

The pain you describe can be GI related. I went to the ER a few years ago for similar. They told me they were glad I came in because it could have been something dangerous instead of just trapped gas.

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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 12:20 am 
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Hoards Peppermint Jo-Jos
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I am going to the doc tomorrow morning. My sister is a nurse and she said I should go if I don't feel well*, but I would hate to go and have it turn out to be just from something stupid like the underwire of my bra, knowing that now I have some reason to feel paranoid with recent EKG results.

I also don't know what my coverage is for ER visits, and the vague as hell GHI site lists only 'ER co-pay' on the site, but not a figure. I guess it's a portion of the bill. I'm really worried about that, as well, seeing as I have student bills to pay for. I am still going, but this is a thought on the back burner. My health is first.


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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 12:29 am 
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My ER co-pay is $100, which has been the standard for all the insurances I've had (no copay if you end up admitted). Those emergency walk-in clinic places are $50, but I've had nasty bills after them. My insurance apparently prefers the ER.

I would call your insurance company and ask. Alternately, the hospital should also know.

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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 12:47 am 
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Dr Bronners, MD
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fauxfrancais wrote:
I am going to the doc tomorrow morning. My sister is a nurse and she said I should go if I don't feel well*, but I would hate to go and have it turn out to be just from something stupid like the underwire of my bra, knowing that now I have some reason to feel paranoid with recent EKG results.


So, you know, take your bra off. That seems like a pretty easy thing to check, right? Normally I'd be all WHOA BABY TAKE IT OFF but not in this case. (That's how serious this could be!)

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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 9:37 am 
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Don't mess around with chest pain. Go to the ER! Call 911. I hope you have already been seen!


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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 5:46 pm 
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solipsistnation wrote:
fauxfrancais wrote:
I am going to the doc tomorrow morning. My sister is a nurse and she said I should go if I don't feel well*, but I would hate to go and have it turn out to be just from something stupid like the underwire of my bra, knowing that now I have some reason to feel paranoid with recent EKG results.


So, you know, take your bra off. That seems like a pretty easy thing to check, right? Normally I'd be all WHOA BABY TAKE IT OFF but not in this case. (That's how serious this could be!)


Yeah, I once had a too tight bra that totally gave me shooting chest pains.

But still, I'd be very cautious with the pains since you had the worrysome ekg.

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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 6:00 pm 
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I hope you've been seen by a doctor at this point! Please take care!

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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 8:24 pm 
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Dr Bronners, MD
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So how'd it go?

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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:23 pm 
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Hoards Peppermint Jo-Jos
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I went to an urgent care place on Sunday morning as soon as I got up since the pain was still there. The doc took x-rays, listened to my heartbeat and my breathing, and everything seems fine from those few observations. I am going to a cardiologist to backtrack and see what's up with the EKG, but the doc said there is no usual manifestation of chest pains with irregular PR intervals. He said from his experience this seems to be musculoskeletal, not heart-oriented pain. That pain could be from physical stress (from carrying heavy laundry bags blocks away during my recent move maybe?) or emotional/mental stress (found out something really upsetting earlier that day). Given my history with the EKG, I can't put off finding out more. Thankfully, it's Spring break.

I threw out the bra that was so tight, but the pain wasn't from that... although it was definitely exacerbated by the underwire.

Thanks for the help you guys<3


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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:26 pm 
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So glad you updated and are ok!

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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2013 11:46 pm 
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Glad to hear you got checked out. Good luck with your cardiologist visit.

I was having chest pains here and there and the cardiologist thinks I had costochondritis. I just found out last Friday. Hopefully it is something simple like that and not a cardiac thing. Good luck again. When did they schedule your cardiologist visit? It took them several months to see me! But my EKG was mostly normal. With abnormal, I would hope they can see you sooner!


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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 12:00 am 
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Dr Bronners, MD
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I'm glad you're okay, and I'm glad you're following up.

...and thanks for waiting, like, 48 hours before replying. Heh. 8)

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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 12:38 am 
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Hoards Peppermint Jo-Jos
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I am SO sorry. I'm frankly not used to having people waiting so kindly on my report of good news. I do appreciate the concern and caring, you guys. It is seriously sweet to come back to! You know, putting aside the fact that I left you in limbo for 2 days.

My chest pains have subsided but you know how things can be with your body. I will not be waiting around for another symptom. I'm using zocdoc to book a cardiologist ASAP.

Kimba, my doc mentioned something about that too! Though he said we won't know for sure until the cardiologist decides.


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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 1:06 am 
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Dr Bronners, MD
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No no, it's okay. I'm glad you're well and taking care of stuff. I did look at the thread on Sunday, but don't feel bad about it. I know stuff happens and I'm sure checking in with your internet acquaintances isn't really a particularly high priority...

Now, if you'd taken a _week_ to get back, well, that might have been more troubling.

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 Post subject: Re: Sharp/Throbbing Chest Pain
PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 1:07 pm 
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I was pretty happy to see this thread was live again, and I'm even happier that it's nothing scary. This is very good news.

I have occasional bad bouts of costochondritis. Sometimes it more like a dull pain in the center of my chest, other times its the intense feeling of a band all the way around my ribcage that makes it nearly impossible to breathe or move. Sometimes I have a pain that feels like it radiates through the middle of my body to my spine. It's really fun! Yeah! Costochondritis is pretty common in people who have fibromyalgia so I had an EKG just to be safe. All was fine with mine though.

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