Chest pain can often be a cause of worry for everyone. A lot of people experience chest pain at some point in their lives. While it is a cause for concern, some causes of chest pain aren’t fatal. Here are a few causes of chest pain that you need to be aware of:
Causes of chest pain that are related to the heart
If your chest pain starts at the left and extends to the right side of your body gradually, it is probably a heart-related chest pain. A few heart problems that are associated with chest pain are the following:
- Heart attack: One of the first thing that comes to your mind when you have a chest pain is a heart attack. Heart attacks are caused due to a blocked artery or a clot in your heart that blocks or slows down the blood flow, preventing your heart from pumping blood to your body properly.
- Aortic dissection: This involves the aorta, which is one of the main arteries in your heart. When the inner layers of the aorta separate, the blood tends to flow between different layers. This, in turn, can cause the aorta to rupture. Aortic dissection can prove to be life-threatening if not treated as soon as possible.
- Angina: Angina takes place when there is a buildup of thick plaques in the inner walls of the arteries. When this happens, the arteries get narrower and the blood flow and supply gets restricted.
- Pericarditis: This heart-related problem takes place when the sac that surrounds your heart gets inflamed.
Causes of chest pain related to the lungs
As mentioned before, chest pain is not restricted to just heart-related problems. Issues with your lungs can cause chest pain as well. Here are a few causes of chest pain related to the lungs:
- Pulmonary hypertension: This takes place when the arteries that carry blood to the lungs have a high blood pressure. Most of the time, it can cause chest pain that radiates from the affected lung to the rest of your chest.
- Collapsed lungs: When there is a leakage of air from the spaces between your ribs and lungs or into a chest cavity, it can cause severe chest pain. It usually begins all of a sudden and lasts for hours.
- Pleurisy: The lungs are covered with a protective membrane. When this membrane gets inflamed, you have a condition known as pleurisy, which is another cause of chest pain.
- Pulmonary embolism: Pulmonary embolism occurs when the artery that carries blood to your lung gets a blood clot. Blood clots can block or restrict the flow of blood to the lung tissues, thereby causing chest pain.
- Pneumonia: Also known as lung abscess, this is a condition that causes an infection of your lungs. It can cause fever, cough, chills, pus formation, and excessive phlegm. Chest pain is a common sign of pneumonia.
Causes of chest pain related to the digestive system
Chest pain can be caused due to disorders that involve the digestive system as well.
- Heartburn: Heartburn is a common condition that most of us face, especially after eating a heavy meal or one that is too oily and spicy. It involves a burning sensation and chest pain that begins at the center of your chest and extends to the neck, shoulders, and back. Stomach acids, enzymes, other fluids as well as food flows back up into the esophagus, causing heartburn.
- Problems with the pancreas and gallbladder: There are many pancreatic and gallbladder disorders like gallstones, pancreatitis, and inflammation of the pancreas and gallbladder that can cause abdominal pain that radiates to your chest as well.
- A hiatal hernia: This disorder takes place when the upper part of your stomach pushes into your chest, especially after eating. It can cause many reflux symptoms like an acid reflux, as well as chest pain.
- Peptic ulcers: Peptic ulcers are a condition that occurs in the lining of your stomach or the small intestine. This can cause chest pain as well.
Causes of chest pain related to muscles or bones
If you hurt the muscles or nerves around your chest, then chest pain is inevitable.
- Costochondritis: There is an inflammation of the cartilage that joins the ribs to the breastbone. It can be painful and cause severe chest pain.
- Injured ribs: Accidents of falls can cause you to have an injured rib. A broken, bruised, or inflamed rib can cause chest pain as well.
- Sore muscles: Syndromes like fibromyalgia and excess strain on your muscles can cause your chest to hurt.
Other causal factors of chest pain can include panic attacks, anxiety, cold, fever as well as high blood pressure. Whatever be the case, it is always recommended that you consult your doctor if you happen to have a chest pain, as the underlying causes can prove to be fatal if not treated on time.