Chest Pain Treatment

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1. Coronary artery disease, Angina, Myocardial Infarction and other cardiovascular diseases

There are many options for angina treatment that include

The goals of treatment are to reduce the frequency and severity of your symptoms and to lower your risk of heart attack and death.

Other cardiovascular diseases may include treatment for

2. Gastro-intestinal pain such as acid reflux (“Hiatal Hernia”)

  • About 50% of patients with a Hiatal hernia do not have acid rreflux and do not require treatment
  • While patients with acid reflux may benefit initially from medical therapy, which includes life style changes and medications. However, if severe and/or chronic, it requires an operation that is called an anti-reflux procedure
  • Esophageal spasm is a rare but disabling disease that may require esophageal surgery and cutting of the spastic muxcle, a treatment similar to that of esophageal Achalasia

3. Lungs

  • Pneumonia and Pleuritis usually are treated with medications alone,
  • A Pulmonary embolism is a potentially life threatening ilness that requires treatment of the cause as occasional surgery to remove blood clots from the arteries in the affected lungs,
  • A collapsed lung often requires treatment with insertion of a chest tube to help it re-expand. Occasionally, the lung requires repair if the leak doesn’t stop.

4. Chest wall

Musculoskeletal, costochondritis or physical injuries can be diagnosed by local examination and are usually easily differentiated from the more serious problems mentioned above. Costochondritis is an inflammation of the junctions where the upper ribs join with the cartilage that holds them to the breastbone or sternum. The condition causes localized chest pain that you can reproduce by pushing on the cartilage in the front of your rib cage. Costochondritis is a relatively harmless condition and usually goes away without treatment. The cause is usually unknown.

Costochondritis can resolve with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen.

5. Anxiety and chest pains

When chest pain is experienced as a symptom of anxiety, the degree of the disorder varies. In some people, chest pain induced by anxiety may last for a very short period of time (ten to fifteen seconds) while for others it may last longer; this symptom can even be cyclical and episodic, recurring from time to time in a person’s life:

  • If anxiety is the cause of chest pain, the discomfort will tend to dissipate when moving around and/or distraction.
  • If there was an actual physical cause to your chest pain, trying to move will be almost impossible… and the discomfort would prevent you from thinking much at all.
  • Anxious people get heart attacks too!

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