If Your Chest Pain’s Not Heart-Related, What Is It?

by Leigh Ann Otte

We all know to seek emergency care for chest pain, but what happens when the tests are run and it turns out, it’s not a heart attack? What in the world was it?

Could be a number of things, writes Richard N. Fogoros, M.D., in this week’s featured article. Arthritis, shingles, a blood clot–even acid-reflux disease. That last one “often has many of the characteristics of classic cardiac pain, including a response to nitroglycerin,” Fogoros says.

Get a quick rundown here: “When It’s Not a Heart Attack: Other Causes of Chest Pain.” And never be embarrassed to seek emergency care. If it turns out your pain is from something else, great. Now you know–and you’re still alive.

Get your free mini-med school: our health e-newsletter!

Leigh Ann Otte is the managing editor of MyFamilyDoctorMag.com and a freelance health writer.

This information is not meant to be individual advice. Please consult your doctor for that. See our disclaimer here.

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26 Responses to “If Your Chest Pain’s Not Heart-Related, What Is It?”

  1. Audrey Elli Says:

    I have been having chest pain a lot latley a lot of the time I get up burp a few times and it’s gone. But I also h ave major panic attacks that last for weeks and or months. I have been tosee the doctor for it several times they have done EKGs they have done an ultrasound on my heart all the tests came back with great results my ultrasound said no clogs or anything my ekgs say heart is beating normally. Now today I went in and found out I have tendonitis in my shoulders and back. But also I can feel it in my chest the doctor said soemtimes yes. But still having really bad anxiety and panic attacks my mind j umps to heart attack. Could the tendonitis cause a bit of chest pain? i have no trouble breathing or light headedness some dizziness but I have alot of meds that cause that. Anyway just wondering if anyone has or has had the same thing. Or if a doctor is out there if he/she could reply.

  2. Leigh Ann Otte Says:

    Thank you for your comment, Audrey. We’re no longer posting on this site, but we invite you to pose your question at our active sister site, which has a similar article:


    Best wishes for a successful recovery,

    Leigh Ann Otte
    Managing Editor

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