Chest Pain and other progressing debilitating symptoms for months.

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Hi All,

First time poster, I am becoming desperate to figure out what is progressively becoming more and more debilitating over the months I have dealt with this. Sorry as this will be a long post but I need some ideas as my doctor(DR) just doesn't seem to know what to do for me. I am a 40 year old happily married Christian father of three teens, 6'-3" & 255 Lbs (down from 285 Lbs which is typically my winter weight). I have an office job so I sit or get limited exercise thought the 8-5 work day but try to get some moderate activity like a walk, bike ride or something most days afterwards.

The issues/problems started about 10 months ago in the winter months (when I am typically less active as I live in Canada) when I was experiencing some chest twinges (no specific time or activity brought them on) every few days. It was a stressful time as I was going through some issues with my eldest child, spending money on a new vehicle, going through some changes at work as well as some pretty unreasonable deadlines to meet with my second job (writer) add that to my ongoing concern for my dear wife's up and down again health (celiac disease and a paralyzed stomach just about took her from us two years ago).

I was going to my family doctor about another issue (spinal cyst and two bulging discs that have caused some ongoing lower back pain and right toe numbness for a couple years) and asked my DR to check my BP as well as I thought for some reason the chest twinges might be due to the "winter weight". He said it was high 158/100 and that he wanted to put me on some BP meds. He started with Coversyl 4mg but after two weeks of taking these pills I was experiencing dizziness, worsened stabbing chest pains on the left side, faintness, brain fog, etc. that sent me to the ER a couple of times thinking I was having a heart attack. All tests pointed to that not being the case. So I went back to my DR who put me on Amlodipine10 mg instead. Needless to say the side effects got worse to include ear ringing, insomnia plus all the other scary issues I had on the Coversyl 4mg and again back to the ER for another heart attack scare. They also tried me on Ramipril 2.5mg and Coversyl 2mg over the few weeks without any luck in side effects. During that six to eight week time I was trying to power through trying all those BP med side effects and also trying to get plenty of exercise and eat less fat/salt and more greens/lean proteins which did a good job to bring my BP down to acceptable levels of 128/84 on a regular basis. After trying four different ones I never did not find a BP med that worked so I have been trying to maintain my BP by just diet and exercise for the last 8-9 months. My BP is now in the 135/92 range but that might be due to the constant pain and stress over getting no answers regarding my pain symptoms during that time.

Now during that time I still have had the stabbing left side chest pains, heavy heartbeat, veins in my hands and feet that seem to bulge, just a feeling that something serious is wrong. I have also experienced these symptoms getting progressively worse as they used to be a couple times per week to now an all consuming, every day, minute to minute issue. I can't sleep as the heavy or rapid heartbeats keep me up when I try to fall asleep and then when I do sleep I am not in a deep sleep but find myself "alarm clock watching".

I have seen two cardiologists who have run EKG, ECG, Echocardiogram, worn a 48 hour Halter Monitor, CT Scans with contrast, Stress tests (both regular and nuclear) which have all come back clean a few months ago. Problem is I have never had the severe chest pain when having one of these tests. Anyways I joined a gym in the fall so I could continue to be active but the symptoms have continued to regress. Over the last couple of months I developed some swelling or at least a feeling of swelling in my left armpit area (DR said he can't see it) where is feels like I am carrying a small sock under my arm and the area is constantly achy or paining as well. I do also get stabs of pain in the rib area on my side as well and a feeling of fullness under my left pec. Also I get pinches and pain in my left arm (around the bicep on the inside just above the elbow) and pinches and pain on the tops of my hands and feet where the veins seem to be more prominent than before. 

I am sitting a home today (missing yet another day of work) after a night of heavy heartbeats, chest pain and the sweats (plus constant anxiety that is something that I never really had before this health scare). As a Christian I know everything is in the hands of my Heavenly Father so I kick myself for feeling so anxious as I know I need to trust in God but I am also human. I am typically a take charge and get things done kind of guy so not knowing or being able to do anything about this has been very difficult and something God wants me to learn, to trust, and I mean 100% trust in Him.

I have even gone to a Naturopath who has treated me for anxiety as well as chest muscular strain over the past couple of months with no success.

Just two weeks ago I went to another city's ER, as my local hospital is small and limited in what they can do, as I was feeling those chest pains on the left side, that heavy heart beat, shortness of breath (which has become a new symptom in the past few weeks) and the side rib pain. They gave me a EKG and then sent in a intern DR who asked me many questions and physically examined me (and my lymph nodes under the arm and around my head/neck) she then sent in a pain management DR who told me he thinks it is costochondritis as he was able to reproduce some pain by pushing between the ribs on my chest. He gave me six steroid shots in my chest and side and told me to take 600mg of ibuprofen (Motrin) every six hours for ten days to bring down any inflammation. A bottle of Motrin later and none of those worked to alleviate the pain/symptoms in the slightest. I have noticed that the shortness of breath and sometimes the heavy heart beats can be mildly alleviated by delivering a good couple of belches but I have no other symptoms of GERD or anything. I have thought about Anxiety Disorder or Fibromyalsia or some other Neuropathy related issue but keep coming back to it has to be heart related as the heavy heartbeat and chest pains are the predominant symptoms. I welcome any ideas as I feel the need to feed my DR avenues to explore at this point.

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  • Posted

    hi dan my name is ruben I'm 43 years old and I'm having similar symtoms. here are the symtoms ive been expierienceing. fullness/discomfort in the chest and throat clearing tightness mostly on the back of my neck usually in the morning and also i get these body jolts and night during sleep or when i starting to fall asleep and my hands sometime get numb during sleep. and just had my bp checked at my primary doctors vistit it was 156/97. so here are the test ive had done a stress test with echo - 24 hour sleep study with holster- numerous ekg;s  a nuclear stress test and all came back normal and then had a upper endoscopy done  and they did find h-polyri. so now I'm on a bp medication and that made me feel worse and i did see a sleep doctor for sleep apnea and they said i have mild sleep apnea but other that they don't know what wrong with me 

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  • Posted

    I go for an ultrasound of my left side in two weeks so we will see what they say after that.
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