Sharp Pain In Chest On Right Side Through To Shoulder
Question posted by Jus Me on 22 Feb 2012
Last updated on 8 February 2018 by Jeanna1960
Pain on right side of chest. Goes from chest to back of shoulder. Sore on right side of chest and sharp pain. Has lasted three days now.
When I worked at a hospital in the emergency room we were generally instructed that when someone came in with chest pain to ask if the pain radiated anywhere and if it went down the arm we were to call a nurse or doctor immediately because it could indicate a possible heart attack. It’s always best to see a doctor though if u are having any issues that might have to do with the heart. It’s always better to be on the safe side.
I have a pain on my right side chest by my shoulder blade it hurts when I move my arm up or lift something my right side of neck feels swollen a bit when I press it as well
Any stress or anxiety? Spine problems? Suffered many years to find I needed a muscle relaxer and not opiods.
Constant pain ion right arm and chest.
Many people with chest pain fear a heart attack.
The most common symptom of a heart attack is chest pain, usually described as crushing, squeezing, pressing, heavy, or occasionally, stabbing or burning. Chest pain tends to be focused either in the center of the chest or just below the center of the rib cage, and it can spread to the arms, abdomen, neck, lower jaw or neck.
New onset chest pain always requires evaluation by your doctor.
Gallstones / Gallbladder Attack
Sudden stabbing pains at the upper part of your abdomen could be a result of gallstones or a gallbladder infection. Your gallbladder is located just under your liver on the right side of your body. Your gallbladder secretes digestive bile produced by the liver to help to break down fats during the digestive process.
Dr. Gregory Thompson on WebMD explains that gallstone pain can start suddenly in the upper abdomen and spread to the right shoulder blade or right-hand side of your upper back. The gallbladder attack pain can be extremely intense and it can last continuously for up to 5 hours.16 Gallstones may also be a reason for feeling nauseous after eating.
In some cases, sharp upper right abdominal pain is one of the side effects of a gallbladder removal . After a gallbladder removal, you may need to follow a gallbladder removal diet to prevent post cholecystectomy side effects such as indigestion and weight gain.
Past Treatments Based On Guesswork
Even without medical attention, sprains and strains usually improve over time. But in the United States alone, some 28,000 ankle injuries occur every day. And the damage can linger. One study showed that only 35 to 85 percent of sprained ankles heal completely within three years.
So researchers have been questioning the way these injuries are treated. Theyve found that the RICE advice came about more from educated guesswork than actual research.
What happens when you actually put these ideas to the test? As far back as 1994, doctors at Oregon Health & Science University randomly divided 82 patients with sprained ankles into two groups. One group wore an elastic wrap for two days, and then switched to braces that allowed for movement. They exercised their ankles under the supervision of the physicians, gradually putting more weight on the injured joint.
The other group wore plaster splints for 10 days, preventing motion in their ankles. Then they started the same exercise and weight-bearing program.
Ten days after their injuries, 57 percent of the early mobilization group had fully returned to work, compared with only 13 percent of the plaster splint group. Three weeks after their injuries, 57 percent of the early mobilization group still experienced pain, compared with 87 percent of the plaster splint group.
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Chest Pain Left Side Vs Right Side
The term chest pain can describe pain anywhere in the chest, but one common question with chest pain is if there is a difference between pain in the left side of the chest and the right side of the chest. This is because people typically associate only left side chest pain with a heart attack, as most people known that is where the heart is located.
However, left side chest pain doesnt always indicate a heart issue. Nor should right side chest pain be ignored. Heart attacks cause pain all over the bodyfrom the right side of the chest, to the left side of the chest and other places on the body, like the jaw.
Chest pain on the right side of the chest rarely signifies a heart issue–but that doesnt mean that right side chest pain isnt serious. There are several reasons behind chest pains on right side, some serious and others not as serious such as:
How Is Noncardiac Chest Pain Diagnosed
If you experience chest pain that resembles cardiac chest pain, you should go to the emergency room. On arrival, you’ll receive a complete physical exam that measures all of your vital signs, including blood pressure and heart rate. Then youll be screened for heart attack or heart disease. Tests include an electrocardiogram a noninvasive test that records your hearts electrical activity and blood tests. Your heart releases certain proteins when a heart attack occurs that will show up in a blood test. Only when cardiac factors have been ruled out will you be diagnosed with noncardiac chest pain.
Once a cardiologist or your primary care provider has ruled out cardiac causes, youll likely be referred to a gastroenterologist next. Theyll test you for esophagus-based causes, starting with GERD. One way of testing is to send you home with a proton-pump inhibitor , a highly effective medicine for GERD. If the PPI relieves your symptoms, it can also confirm their cause. Other tests may include a PH study of the esophagus, an esophageal motility test, an upper endoscopy or ultrasound. In addition to physical tests, your healthcare provider will take a medical history and ask about your stress and emotional factors.
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What Are The Most Common Causes Of Noncardiac Chest Pain
Noncardiac chest pain is most commonly related to a problem with your esophagus, the swallowing tube that connects your mouth to your stomach. There are several different esophageal disorders that can cause noncardiac chest pain, including:
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease . Otherwise known as chronic acid reflux, this is the most common cause of noncardiac chest pain, accounting for 50% to 60% of cases.
- Esophageal muscle spasms. Abnormal contractions or squeezing of your esophagus.
- Achalasia. This is a rare disorder in which your lower esophageal sphincter doesnt relax and open to allow food into your stomach, causing food to back up into your esophagus.
- Esophageal hypersensitivity. This is a sensory disorder in which the muscles, nerves and receptors of your esophageal wall are overly sensitive. People with this condition experience normal tension, pressure changes, and acid contents as painful.
- Inflammation of the esophagus. This can result from an immune response to infection or food allergies or from peptic ulcer disease.
- Abnormal esophageal tissue. This creates constrictions, such as rings and webs.
When healthcare providers cant determine the cause but have ruled out other possible factors, they diagnose functional chest pain of presumed esophageal origin.”
Cardiac Pain That Isnt A Heart Attack
Cardiac pain, or angina, refers to discomfort in the chest because of something going on with the heart. The first thing a cardiologist will try to determine in a patient with cardiac pain is whether the pain is caused by clogged arteries.
Several conditions of the heart can cause cardiac pain but arent related to clogged arteries, including:
- Pericarditis: inflammation of the two thin layers of tissue that surround the heart
- Dissection: when the aorta splits and causes severe chest and back pain
- Myocarditis: inflammation of the heart muscle
- Cardiomyopathy: diseases of the heart muscle
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What Kind Of Chest Pain Is Covid
Symptoms of the COVID-19 virus include chest pain that occurs with difficulty breathing, and coughing that may lead to chest muscle pain and tightness. Most people will recover from their symptoms, but about 5% of COVID-19 infections lead to severe cases and potential heart damage. People with “long COVID” chest pain may have lingering symptoms, with shortness of breath, chest pain, and palpitations or heart rate changes common among them.
When To Seek Help
Its best to talk with a mental health professional any time stress or anxiety starts to affect your day-to-day life.
Keep in mind: You dont need to have a specific mental health condition to benefit from therapy. A qualified therapist can help you identify potential triggers and create effective coping mechanisms to minimize their impact, even if you dont meet the diagnostic criteria for an anxiety disorder.
Its also worth reaching out if stress or anxiety leaves you feeling hopeless, or if you start having thoughts of harming yourself or others.
If youre not sure where to start, consider asking your primary healthcare professional for a referral.
Many types of therapy can help with stress and anxiety. A mental health professional can help you find the right approach for your specific symptoms.
Some examples of approaches they might recommend are:
- Cognitive behavioral therapy, which teaches you to recognize anxious thoughts and behaviors and change them into more positive ones.
- Exposure therapy, which involves gradually exposing you to certain things that trigger anxiety.
- Acceptance and commitment therapy, which teaches you how to accept and sit with negative emotions.
Depending on your symptoms, they may also recommend medication to help with anxiety symptoms. These may include selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors , such as sertraline or paroxetine .
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The Three Most Common Causes Of Noncardiac Chest Pain
Symptoms Can Be Different For Men And Women
Men and women experience heart attack symptoms in slightly different ways. The main difference is how pain radiates.
- For men: Pain will spread to the left shoulder, down the left arm or up to the chin.
- For women: Pain can be much more subtle. It may travel to the left or right arm, up to the chin, shoulder blades and upper back or to abdomen . Women are also more likely to experience these accompanying symptoms: shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting and back or jaw pain. Read an in-depth overview of heart attack symptoms for women here.
Some heart attacks are sudden and intense, but most start slowly with mild pain and discomfort. Surviving a heart attack depends upon how well you recognize and react to these symptoms. Remember that “time is muscle.” The sooner you receive medical care, the sooner heart muscle can be saved.
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Bone Or Muscle Problems
If your chest is painful and tender to touch, it may be caused by a strained muscle in your chest wall. This can be surprisingly painful, but with rest the pain should ease and the muscle will heal in time.
If you have pain, swelling and tenderness around your ribs, and the pain is made worse by lying down, breathing deeply, coughing or sneezing, you may have a condition called costochondritis.
This is caused by inflammation in the joints between the cartilage that joins the ribs to the breastbone . The symptoms often improve after a few weeks and may be relieved by painkillers.
Why It Can Be Difficult To Diagnose Chest Pain On The Right Side
The chest cavity is the second-largest hollow space in the body after the abdominal cavity. Within the chest are some major players such as the heart, ribs, lungs, and esophagusas well as nerves, arteries, blood vessels, muscle, bones, and connective tissue. Thats a lot of moving parts, and the reason why pain within the chest cavity is so tricky to diagnose, Dr. Khandwalla says.
Dozens of conditions can cause chest pain on the right side. Some are directly related to the right side because an organ such as a lung is there, or it could be referred pain.
Referred pain is when you feel pain in one part of the body caused by pain from an injury or illness in another part of the body. For example, a person may have heart attack symptomssuch as pain in the jaw, neck, or backbut the source of pain originates from the heart.
If I take a hammer and smash my finger, I will feel the pain at the exact location of the injury. The same is not true of the chest due to the complexity of how the nerve fibers are arranged throughout the chest, says Dr. Khandwalla. Consequently, it is difficult to localize pain in the chest, so a problem on the left side of the chest can present itself as pain on the right side, shoulder pain, or even neck and jaw pain.
Here are a few things that can cause right-side chest pain, from relatively mild and common problems, to the more rare and serious.
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Shingles And Chest Pain
Shingles is caused by the same virus that causes chickenpox. If youve had chickenpox in the past, youre at risk for developing shingles.
Early symptoms of shingles include burning, tingling, and a numbness in nerve distribution that the varicella virus has been dormant in. If the rash is going to involve one of the dermatomes of the chest, this will often be painful, burn or tingle.
A painful, blistering rash typically follows, This is a red rash with blisters on it, whch ultimately pop, scab and heal. If you feel chest pain that seems to be nerve-related instead of muscle or internally-related, have had chickenpox in the past, and have not been vaccinated against shingles, call your doctor to discuss your options or get to a hospital immediately. Shingles can be very painful if its not caught quickly. Luckily, there is a vaccine for adults over age 65 and anti-virals can shorten the duration of symptoms, if caught early enough.
Chest Pain That Hurts When Youre Coughing A Lot
Excessive coughing from the common cold, pneumonia, or an inflamed lung condition gives the chest, back, and abdomen muscles quite a workout during coughing fits.
Pneumonia is an infection that inflames your lungs air sacs, filling them with fluid or pus. Symptoms include fever, chills, trouble breathing, and lots of coughing. All that coughing makes your chest hurt when you take a deep breath.
Coughing helps your body remove mucus, but your doctor may recommend a cough suppressant so you can get some rest. Your doctor may suggest NSAIDs for pain and possibly prescribe antibiotics, depending on the type of pneumonia you have.
Pleurisy in the chest wall occurs when there is swelling of the pleura, which is the thin lining around the chest cavity and lungs. It can be caused by bacterial and viral infections. Swelling causes the lungs to rub up against the chest, causing pain. Inhaling becomes painful, which forces quick and shallow breathing, causing more discomfort.
On the side where the pain is, the chest muscles move less than those on the other side. Treatments include NSAIDs to help relieve chest pain, and if the infections stem from bacteria, antibiotics are necessary. To help you sleep easier, your doctor may prescribe cough medicine for the dry cough that comes with pleurisy.
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Coronary Artery Disease / Angina Pectoris
Coronary artery disease, more commonly known as heart disease, is a condition that develops as a result of plaque buildup in the arteries. Symptoms are often mistaken for heartburn or indigestion and include a feeling of heaviness in the chest area, numbness, burning, aching, and pain in the chest. Discomfort is usually felt mostly in the chest area, but it is also common in the left shoulder or arm, neck, or back.
A physical exam is required for diagnosis of coronary heart disease, along with stress tests or heart monitoring. Treatment usually involves lifestyle changes, such as quitting smoking and avoiding high-fat foods, avoiding stressful situations and people, taking prescribed medications, and sometimes surgical procedures.
Chest pain from angina pectoris is due to poor blood flow to the heart. Often this is accompanied by nausea, feeling unwell, sweating, and tightness in the chest and pain in the left arm/jaw. These symptoms indicate poor blood flow to the heart. If you have had this before and been evaluated by your doctor, you should rest and take the nitroglycerin that you have been given. If this is a new sensation, then you need immediate medical care, as this could be a heart attack.
Techniques To Manage Stress And Anxiety
Its common to experience stress and anxiety from time to time, and there are strategies you can use to make them more manageable.
Pay attention to how your body and mind respond to stressful and anxiety-producing situations. Next time this type of experience occurs, youll be able to anticipate your reaction, and it may be less disruptive.
Certain lifestyle changes can help alleviate symptoms of stress and anxiety. These techniques can be used alongside medical treatments for anxiety.
Techniques to reduce stress and anxiety include:
- limiting caffeine and alcohol consumption
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