Left side chest pain

The various aches and pains that you can feel in your body are collectively frightening, especially if you are not a doctor, nurse, emergency medical technician or other experienced medical professional. Many of the normal aches and pains you feel could be the result of either a simple problem or a life threatening condition. To further confuse things, some life threatening diseases and conditions do not even cause pain at all. This can often make many people overreact when they have pain – and really, with this much confusion, can you really consider fear to be over reactive?

One of the most dreaded and feared types of pain you can encounter is left side chest pain. Because your heart is located on the left side of your chest, any pain felt in this area immediately sparks fear in sufferers. When trying to determine the cause of left side chest pain many people just think, “heart attack” and proceed to a full on freak out. Of course, there are many perfectly benign causes for left side chest pain as well. In addition, not all heart attacks manifest themselves as a pain in the chest. Some cause pain to the back, making sufferers think they have spent too much time slouching over a desk instead of realizing that they are having a heart attack.

Many of your internal organs are located in the same central region. Each of these can be the cause of left side chest pain. When you have indigestion or heart burn, the left side of your chest may feel as though it is under pressure or burning. If you have a bruised rib you may find that the left side of your chest is in pain – especially when you cough or laugh.  Panic attacks are another problem, this time completely psychological, that can be the cause of left side chest pain. Even if you suffer from back pain you may find that one symptom-pain-travels around your body and finds a comfy home within the left side of your chest.

Of course, amongst all these relatively benign problems and causes of left side chest pain lurks a real problem, which is the possibility that the cause of left side chest pain you have is a heart attack, a tear in your aorta or an inflammation of some of the tissues surrounding your heart. These three conditions do cause of left side chest pain and may be fatal if not treated immediately.

This is why it is especially important to seek emergency care if you have any concern that your left side chest pain may be caused by anything serious. Obviously, if you have already been diagnosed with a bruised rib or indigestion you may be used to the pain and unsurprised by it. But if this is a new pain and you have yet to see a doctor, it is definitely worth a trip.

If you have left side chest pain or any other pains that you think are unusual or that do not go away with pain relievers be sure to visit your primary care physician immediately. You should not rely on the internet, medical journals or manuals to self diagnose your illness. Since many illnesses share similar symptoms, it is almost impossible for you to definitively diagnose yourself, and trying to do so could result in your illness progressing past a point of treatment. Your primary care physician or the doctors at your local walk in clinic have the experience, education and knowledge necessary to determine the best way to treat your pain and determine its etymology.

Last updated on Oct 5th, 2009 and filed under Cardiovascular Disorders. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

1 Response for “Left side chest pain”

  1. Maureen says:

    I have a severe pain on my left chest,it started 2 hrs ago. I am on a healthy diet and exercise about an hour daily. I am 23 yrs and weigh 109 kgs. should I be worried?

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