Submitted by Dr T on December 11, 2011 – 12:52pm
Hi Doctor,37 year old male, 6’0″, 220 lbs. No family history of heart disease from anyone under 60.I’ve been experiencing various symptoms of chest pain for almost two years. My first issue occurred out of nowhere – after a heavy meal I had chest pain which I shrugged off as indigestion. But it didn’t go away and developed into a rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath, dizziness and cold sweat.After that first episode, various symptoms have continued at irregular intervals. For two weeks following the episode I would have periods of dull/burning pain in the area around my heart, weak heartbeat, weakness and dizziness. Then it would mysteriously go away for several weeks, only to come back and alternate off and on with varying symptoms and intensity.I saw my GP soon after the first episode and had normal EKG and normal BP. The diagnosis was muscle spasms, which didn’t seem like it could be the real problem.Since then the frequency and intensity have gone down, but when the pain flares up it is still quite intimidating.I used to exercise regularly, but have recently become a father and haven’t had the spare time to visit the gym. I’ve noticed, however, that symptoms seem to occur at night after I have found an open moment to exercise. I may go two weeks without issues, then find an open afternoon to jog a couple miles, and usually that night or the next I will have the chest pain and symptoms.It also seems to coincide with spicy food. And I started to get heartburn pretty regularly around the time when I had the first episode last year. After spicy food I may get a burning sensation in my lower ribcage, and a tingling in and around my heart.And the episodes almost always occur at night when I go to bed, which makes me think it has something to do with lying down.So I’m not sure what to do. From everything I have been told, I shouldn’t worry about it. But it just feels like something is wrong, and I don’t want to find out too late.Would like to hear your thoughts if any of these symptoms and circumstances point to possible conclusions, and if I should seek out a cardiologist on my own since my GP doesn’t think it is a problem.Thanks for your time.