Heart & Cardiology/Worried sick.!!


I am 20 years old., married with a 2 year old and a one month old boy. I love my boys like crazy as any mom would. I recently had to go to the ER due to having a bad pain that started on the left side of my chest and wrapped around to my shoulder blade. They did an EKG., and a chest X-ray. Everything came back good and they said my vitals were good also. I have been under a lot of stress and lack of sleep due to the stress and other worries. And I was wondering how likely is it that I could have a heart attack.? I'm scared to think that I will have one at this age and don't know what to think about it. It's been weighing on my mind & I get light headed a lot but I am always doing and never relaxing. Plus I sweat quite a bit but I've got two boys to take care of all day plus my husband when he gets home. I just want answers to ease my mind. Please get back to me soon.!

Hello Shelby,

Almost impossible for a young woman to have a heart attack.

Chest pain in a young person is usually cramping of muscles in the chest wall.  If pushing on the painful area modifies the pain (makes it better or worse), or if the pain is relieved by bending the body away from the painful area, that proves the pain is from chest  wall.  Even if these maneuvers donít affect the pain, itís still probably chest wall.  Pain caused by narrowing of the coronary arteries that supply blood to the heart is extremely rare below age 40. Chest wall pain is no threat to life or health, just a big nuisance.  Safest management is just to ignore the pain, though Tylenol, aspirin or ibuprofren usually help.

Please write back if this note doesnít answer all your questions.

David Richardson

Heart & Cardiology

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David Richardson


Adult heart function and disease. Not very good about children lesss than 12. Hypertension is o.k. Heart rhythm a special interest.


Certified in cardiology by the American Board of Internal Medicine. Was chairman of division of cardiology at the Medical College of Virginia. Am now mostly retired.

Fellow of American Heart Association and American College of Cardiology and member of American Physiological Society..

Circulation, American Heart Journal, Hypertension.

M.D. from Harvard Medical School. Residency training at Yale Uhniversity School of Medicine and Medical College of Virginia.

Awards and Honors
Gold Heartt Award from American Heart Association in 1995.

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