Chest pain can mean pain or discomfort. National Jewish Health Cardiologist Andrew Freeman, MD, explains what you need to know and when to seek help.



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A lot of us cardiologists will use “chest pain” as shorthand for any discomfort above the waist.

I make a habit in my practice when I ask a patient about chest discomfort, I ask him if he has pain, squeezing, burning, stabbing, anyway that could describe it, because, a lot of people will say my chest is tight but I don't have any pain.

Well that actually could still be angina in the right situation and needs to be investigated.

Sometimes the pain is so severe, that patients will tell me they've been rolling around on the floor for hours, thinking they have food poisoning, and it’s actually their heart.

So when something really catches your attention, do something about it.

And, when something is pretty reproducible, meaning, every time I walk fifty steps, I get chest pains, I take a breath, I relax and it goes away.

Thats angina too and it needs to be investigated.

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