Chest pain may cause plenty of worries, since most people are convinced it always has to have something with their heart. Well, it is not like that and pain in the chest may be caused by several different things besides heart attack.
Cardiovascular diseases (including heart attack) are usually presented with additional symptoms, such as: acute pain in the chest unrelated to breathing, pressure or fullness in the chest and pain which radiates to the jaw, neck, the arm and back. Many times patients suffering from some cardiovascular problem experience nausea, vomiting, sweating or shortness of breath and these can be followed with chest pains.
Lung Problems and Pain in Chest
Pneumonia, pleurisy, pneumotorax and pulmonary embolism are lung conditions that might lead to development of chest pain while breathing in some patients.
Pneumonia is usually caused by bacterial infection. Besides chest pain when breathing, patients usually develop high fever, chills, productive cough, sweating, muscle pains and shortness of breath. This condition should be treated with antibiotics, so don’t neglect these symptoms and visit your doctor if you have them.
Pleurisy or pleuritis is inflammation of the lung cavity, commonly due to viral infection, pneumonia or some autoimmune diseases. Other accompanying symptoms are: fever, chills, dry cough and shortness of breath.
Pneumotorax is the term for collapsed lung. This happens after some chest injuries and if the condition is not severe it can heal on its own. Otherwise, it has to be treated and may require urgent medical assistance.
Pulmonary embolism affects people whose artery or arteries responsible for the supply of blood to the lungs get clogged. Shortness of breath, bluish skin, sweating, coughing up blood and inhalation chest pain are commonly seen symptoms of patients suffering from pulmonary embolism.
Other Causes of Chest Pains when Breathing
Pericarditis, costochondritis or broken ribs may also lead to pain in the chest when the person tries to breathe properly. Pericarditis is inflammation of the membrane which surrounds the heart. These patients often have reported stabbing pain in the chest, which can be misinterpreted as heart attack. This condition requires bed rest and medications.
Inflammation of the cartilage between the ribs and the sternum is known as costochondritis (or chest wall pain). Breathing and coughing may be painful for these patients, but this is not serious medical problem. It is easily treated with anti-inflammatory drugs and some muscle relaxant medications.
Broken rib(s) may also lead to chest pains while breathing or coughing, which occur in accidents or traumas to the chest.