Tightness in chest and abdominal area accompanied by chest pains and palpitations...

by mark

For a couple of months now I have not been feeling well. I have been to the doctor and he said that I have Gerd. So he gave me PPI's which eliminated some of my symptoms (feeling of a lump in the throat). However what's bothering me now is this chest and abdominal tightness, which is accompanied, sometimes, by chest pains, palpitations and the feeling of not getting enough air. This is happening everyday and it is worst at night even when I'm not lying down. I went to the doctor and he requested bloodwork EKG and 2d echo. The EKG and bloodwork came out normal, while the 2d echo diagnosis said that I have a TVC(tricuspid valve prolapse) with mild tricuspid regurgitation. The doctor said not to worry because it was only causing the palpitations and not the other symptoms. In conclusion the doctors weren't of big help because they didn't know the cause of my chest pains.

Here are the list of all the symptoms I am feeling:

-Tightness in chest and abdominal area (relieved by burping and passing gas or bowel movement but only for a few minutes)
-Feeling air stuck in my chest area when I burp, which forces me to swallow air so that I can burp.
-feeling of not getting enough air which causes me to raise my shoulders to get more air.
-Plenty of air which causes sounds in my stomach.
-sharp stabbing Left sided chest pain (on top of the breastbone) which cause numbness in left arm
-tingling of pinky, ring and middle finger tips.
-unexpected tears falling from my left eye, which happens 2 to 3 times a day.
-weight loss
-waking up at night because I'm not breathing anymore.
-sometimes I have diarrhea and others times I have constipation.

All of these are scaring me everyday. I've been rushed to the ER for 5 times thinking that I was having a heart attack. I used to drink alcohol every night after work and I also used to be a smoker (up to 5 cigarettes a day). I quit drinking and I reduced smoking to 1 cigarette a day until I wasn't smoking anymore. Some times the discomfort goes away when I get sweaty while doing something. I work on the computer 8 hours a day, 7 days a week so I don't have much exercise. I honestly don't know what's wrong with me.

Hello Mark,
Firstly, it's not normal to work seven days a week at anything, and especially not at a computer. Your body is trying to tell you something. Call it a "wake-up call" if you like.

When did you last take a holiday?

Run your fingers down your breastbone, feeling the junction of the ribs and breastbone. Any swelling? Are any of them tender. Any pain in the midback?

I'm uncertain, but you may have a stubborn condition called Tietze's syndrome. If it affects the collarbone-breastbone joint, or the first rib there is often an associated arm pain due to an affect on the brachial plexus and subclavian artery.

Tietze's syndrome is often associated with GERD as the diaphragm is attached to the lower ribs.

Warning: heavy manipulation, posterior to anterior, in the midback may aggravate this condition.

Good luck,

Dr. Barrie Lewis

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Mar 04, 2013
Thank you!
by: Mark

Thank you so much for the information. I went to the Chiropractor earlier this day, and she checked me and she confirmed that I have a hiatal hernia. After she adjusted it I felt great, all the symptoms were gone and I don't have to exert swallow air just to burp, it just comes out naturally. Lastly I asked for an appointment once a week.

Great news, Mark.
One other little tip. Drink fluids BEFORE and not with or AFTER meals for an hour.

Dr. Barrie Lewis

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