What to do with heart pain first aid, causes and symptoms

The reasons can be very different, but most often pain on inspiration occurs with intercostal neuralgia or pinched nerve. A characteristic pain syndrome occurs precisely with an excursion of the chest and compression of the nerve endings. In this case, a neuropathologist will deal with the treatment.

Other reasons why the heart pricks:

  • exposure to toxic substances (alcohol, smoking, drugs);
  • muscle damage;
  • diseases of the pulmonary system;
  • pathological changes in large vessels (thromboembolism, aortic aneurysm);
  • diseases affecting the skeletal system;
  • changes in the mediastinum.

The causes of aching pain in the heart can be psychosomatic. Pain can occur after prolonged nervous exertion or after stress. In any case, with the appearance of pain in the heart, you need to contact a cardiologist to exclude heart diseases and determine further examination tactics. Do not self-medicate. The true causes of colic in the heart can only be determined by a doctor after a thorough examination.

Symptoms of a heartache of a prolonged, aching nature may indicate psychosomatics, which is more common in young people. In this case, the following are additionally noted:

  • sleep disorders;
  • impaired appetite;
  • mood swings;
  • apathy;
  • headache.

When confirming the psychosomatic factor, the patient is referred for consultation to a psychotherapist, neurologist.

Do not ignore your symptoms, the loss of time in the diagnosis of the disease can only aggravate the situation and adversely affect health.

Only the attending physician can determine the exact cause of pain in the heart after a full examination and diagnosis. First, the doctor examines the patient, finds out complaints, the duration of the disease, the nature of the pain, their localization, and clarifies what additional symptoms are. To clarify the diagnosis, laboratory and instrumental examination methods help:

  • fluorography;
  • electrocardiogram;
  • blood chemistry;
  • general blood analysis;
  • bicycle ergometry;
  • Echocardiography;
  • CT scan;
  • MRI.

If pain occurs, it is recommended to sign up to the doctor and undergo the examination recommended by the doctor. Especially if the pains are regular and interfere with the usual way of life.

Heart pierces, what to do? Treatment may be prescribed after examination. What to do if heart pierces:

  • drug therapy (the names of the pills for heart pain are clarified by the doctor after diagnosis);
  • physiotherapeutic procedures;
  • surgery.

The heart can hurt in different ways, depending on the reasons that are presented in the table.

Type of painCharacteristics
AchingThe most incomprehensible, arises as a result of hormonal changes in the body, against the background of stress (cardioneurosis), osteochondrosis, or is a sign of an attack of angina pectoris.

The essence is a change in vascular tone with malnutrition of tissues and organs localized in or near the mediastinum

CrushingThe most frequent (up to 99%). Almost always, the cause of its occurrence lies in the disruption of the myocardium and major vessels: cardiomyopathy, myocarditis, heart valve defects, aorta. The bottom line is a violation of hemodynamicsStitchingNonspecific, most often occurs with ischemia of the heart of various origins and vascular spasm (25%). Among extracardiac causes – osteochondrosis leads (up to 80%)DullAppears after injuries or as an attack of angina pectoris, requires a visit to a specialist, since progressive myocardial hypoxia of various etiologies creates a risk of serious complicationsPullingA dangerous condition that warns of a possible heart attack or breast tumor is characterized by a violation of the quality of life, constant discomfort as a result of the development of tissue ischemiaSharpPain in the heart is extremely strong, it cannot be tolerated, discomfort spreads to the entire left half of the chest, radiates to the left hand, under the shoulder blade, neck, burns, bakes – in 95% of cases it becomes the precursor of life-threatening heart pathologySharpUsually occurs suddenly against a background of physical activity and progresses rapidly, warning of an attack of angina pectoris, pre-infarction, trauma, accompanied by arrhythmiaPain under the left heartRarely has a cardiac origin: in the epigastrium, the digestive system, diaphragm, or lungs are more likely to cause discomfortPain when coughing or breathingThe reason is a pathology of the pulmonary system or osteochondrosis, heart pain is not associated with breathing and movementIrradiating painThis is a sign of serious cardiac pathology, they indicate an increase in myocardial ischemia, pre-infarction, pre-stroke condition

It is impossible to understand that it is the heart that hurts without a full clinical and laboratory examination, even knowing how the nature of the unpleasant sensations behind the sternum changes. You need to contact a specialist.

Cardialgia accounts for up to 70% of unpleasant sensations behind the sternum, the remaining 30% are of extracardial origin. However, there are several signs of a malfunction of the cardiovascular system that occur even before an attack of pain and warn of the risk of developing a serious pathology. These include:

  • pain in the left half of the chest;
  • discomfort after exercise, which disappears after a short rest or is stopped by Nitroglycerin;
  • dyspnea;
  • snoring, sleep apnea;
  • pasty

8f7b3165872aafdfbfaaa9b422d2851a - What to do with heart pain first aid, causes and symptoms

These are early symptoms of heart problems that help prevent serious pathologies.

Pain in the heart can be divided into cardiac and extracardiac, correlated with certain symptoms, which is especially clearly seen in the table version.

CausesSymptoms
Heart
Heart defectsHow heart pain with congenital or acquired anatomical defects helps to understand the following symptoms and signs:
  • sensations behind the sternum of a cutting, stitching, aching character;
  • dyspnea;
  • weakness;
  • acrocyanosis;
  • arrhythmias;
  • fainting;
  • sweating.

A distinctive feature is the fluctuation of blood pressure.

AMIPain in the heart is sharp, pressing, radiating to the back and under the shoulder blade, accompanied by:
  • a sense of fear of death;
  • profuse sweat;
  • tachycardia.

Nitroglycerin does not help, any movement enhances discomfort

MyocarditisIt is characterized by mild aching sensations behind the sternum, which increase with physical exertion and are not removed by Nitroglycerin.
CardiomyopathyThe distinctive features of the disease are the diffuse nature of cardialgia and its change as the disease progresses: at first the heart hurts constantly, discomfort does not depend on physical activity and does not stop with nitrates, then the pain becomes paroxysmal, occurs spontaneously or after overstrain, but Nitroglycerin is removed
Angina pectorisThis is a symptom of coronary heart disease, which occurs a load field, accompanied by:
  • shortness of breath;
  • tachycardia;
  • dull, pressing, constricting pain in the sternum;
  • weakness;
  • dizziness.

Removable with nitrates.

Exfoliating Aortic AneurysmAn acute condition requiring emergency care is characterized by incredibly severe pain in the chest, up to the loss of consciousness, ending in death
TelaAn emergency situation when a person does not have time to understand why the heart hurts, with shortness of breath, pain in the chest, worse when you inhale, but does not give away anywhere, tachycardia, a sharp drop in blood pressure, leading to collapse and death
PericarditisThe pain in the area of ​​the heart is dull, localized in the center of the sternum, aggravated by coughing, in a sitting position, gives to the left arm, neck, accompanied by a frequent heartbeat
ArrhythmiaA distinctive feature is radiating to the left hand with pain of any nature in combination with a violation of the heart rhythm
Extracardiac
Intercostal neuralgia, myositisUnpleasant sensations resemble an attack of angina pectoris, but intensify with breathing, coughing, movement, the character is acute, like a lumbago, localized along the ribs in the left half of the chest
Osteochondrosis, intervertebral herniaIt hurts in the region of the heart, but at the same time it gives to the back and the left side of the abdomen, it can resemble angina pectoris, but the discomfort increases with movement, it is not relieved by Nitroglycerin
Digestive tube diseasesAlways unpleasant sensations associated with food, are aching in nature, accompanied by belching, heartburn, flatulence
CNS DisordersProlonged pain on the left behind the sternum, accompanied by:
  • anxiety
  • insomnia;
  • emotional lability;
  • decreased libido;
  • migraine
Pulmonary pathologyDiscomfort aching, constant, depends on the breath. Combined with shortness of breath, cough, hyperthermia.

It is typical for examining a person with complaints of heart pain of a different nature:

  • medical history, physical examination;
  • tonometry, pulsometry;
  • OAC, OAM, biochemistry, hormone tests;
  • X-ray examination: a panoramic picture of the chest, fluorography, CT, MSCT;
  • ECG, Echocardiography, Holter;
  • Ultrasound of the kidneys;
  • fundus examination;
  • MRI

There are specific diagnostic signs that help to differentiate heart and non-cardiac pain.

HeartHeartless
Localized behind the sternum or to the left of itSpot, can be shown with your finger.
Irradiate to the left hand, neck, shoulder bladeIrradiate along the ribs on the left, to the spine
Character – pressing, burning, stitching (rarely)In the form of a lumbar, stitching, aching
Amplifies under loadIt is provoked by movement, breathing, eating.
More often paroxysmalMore constant
Decreases at restDecreases in a comfortable position
Stopped by NitroglycerinIt is not stopped by Nitroglycerin, but is removed with painkillers.
Pressure on the chest does not increase painPressure painful
It is accompanied by shortness of breath, tachycardia, arrhythmia. Fluctuations in blood pressure, hyperhidrosis, general weaknessSymptoms of spinal crunch, cough, hyperthermia, heartburn, bitterness in the mouth, belching without significant discomfort
  • Osteochondrosis of the cervical and thoracic spine and weakening of the latter in the chest. In this case, there is dull pain in the heart and arm, as well as the interscapular region. The sensitivity of the skin changes, which provokes the sensation of “goosebumps.”
    Changes in body position, head turns, arm movements only provoke increased pain. Appearing pain in the heart at night and in the evening is also a sign of osteochondrosis, since during these hours the spine is slightly shortened under its own weight, which provokes compression of blood vessels and nerves. The diagnosis is confirmed by radiography and MRI of the spine.
  • Pulmonary embolism, the cause of which is a blood clot that blocks the flow of blood to the heart. Pain in the heart, the symptoms of which appear suddenly and sharply, intensify with coughing and deep breathing.

    543104 - What to do with heart pain first aid, causes and symptoms

    How the heart hurts: the main types of pain and symptoms

    A preliminary diagnosis can be made by describing the nature of the discomfort according to the patient. It is noted: if the latter describes the symptoms colorfully, in all details, and even fixes them “by pencil,” then the pain center, most likely, can be a consequence of damage to other organs. If, moreover, an inconsistent time period and the nature of the pain, accompanied by an accelerated heartbeat, are noticed, then the cause of the disease is probably out of the heart range.

    In the case of an avaricious description of pain in verbal form, but with a clear reproduction of its nature in memory, it is necessary to take the patient’s complaint seriously, as this may indicate the presence of a serious heart disease.

    I would like to note that most female people complain of a burning sensation in the back or upper part of the thoracic region, without linking them together and heart pain. Symptoms of problems with the “motor” of our body are manifested in general weakness, shortness of breath, the appearance of cold sweat and dizziness.

    One of the common signs of heart problems is shortness of breath, worse during physical exertion and when lying down, and weakening at rest when taking a sitting posture. The feeling of lack of air and difficulty breathing is the result of stagnation of blood in the lungs and an increase in pressure in the pulmonary capillaries.

    • In cases where the pain is caused by diseases of the nervous system or cardioneurosis, then it will be accompanied by constant aching sensations in the region of the heart. Under stress, her presence will only increase. Drugs such as valerian or valocardin can help soothe pain.
    • If the feeling of pain is aching with a combination of tingling sensations, then, most likely, this is an inflammatory process that occurs in the heart muscles. Usually pain in this case appears during exertion and is accompanied by malaise, shortness of breath, general weakness. Quite often, such pain occurs as a complication after other diseases (colds, tonsillitis, otitis media) a few weeks after recovery.

    How to distinguish heart pain from pain of non-cardiac origin?

    • insufficient nutrition of the heart muscles themselves;
    • inflammatory process in the tissues of the organ;
    • metabolic disorders in the coronary arteries;
    • a large load that causes changes in the organ itself (enlargement of the ventricles, loose closure of the valves).

    2. Diseases not directly affecting the heart, but giving away pain in this area:

    • gastrointestinal pathology (gastritis, ulcer);
    • neuralgia – clamping of nerve endings in the spinal column, ribs;
    • pathology of the lungs and bronchi;
    • consequence of injury.
    • tingling sensation;
    • shooting through;
    • acute pain in the chest, left arm with coughing or sudden movement;
    • do not disappear after taking nitroglycerin;
    • constant presence (not paroxysmal).

    2. As for heart pain, they differ:

    • severity;
    • burning sensation;
    • compression
    • spontaneous appearance, come in bouts;
    • the disappearance (fading) after taking nitroglycerin;
    • radiating to the left side of the body.

    Heart pain associated with the work of the cardiovascular system, the symptoms of which are always accompanied by pressing aching pain in the chest area, can be either short-term or prolonged, with periodic intensification and decay.

    It is quite difficult to describe the pressing pains in the region of the heart because of their dissimilarity: some can be sustained, while the latter can not be endured categorically – you need to remove them immediately. Discomfort in the chest area may be associated with heart disease, vegetovascular dystonia of the heart, decreased blood flow, or the effects of side factors.

    • Myocardial infarction. The cause of its occurrence is a clot formed in the vessels, which blocks the movement of blood through the arteries. The disease is characterized by very burning, pressing, tearing pain behind the sternum and to the left of it, and in this case, nitroglycerin does not help. The resulting pain radiates to the heart and is often accompanied by nausea, cold sweat and shortness of breath. This usually lasts from several minutes to an hour, involving the neck, back, shoulders, arms (especially the left) and lower jaw in the painful area. Very often a heart attack is carried on the legs, which is fraught with complications. This may be pulmonary edema, cardiogenic shock, severe tachyarrhythmia. Clinical death due to ventricular fibrillation may occur. It is possible to detect the presence of myocardial infarction by establishing the overall picture of the disease. Unfortunately, a clear relationship between painful saturation and a real threat to life is not always noted.
    • Heart disease. According to statistics, more than 25% of heart diseases are acquired defects, and the valves of the left side of the heart are several times more likely to be affected. The magnitude of the violation of blood flow varies 3 stages of the disease:
    1. Compensated. The heart overcomes the usual stress of life without reminding itself.
    2. Subcompensated. Symptoms occur during physical exertion.
    3. Decompensated. Aching pain in the heart is constant: both at rest and during movement.
      You can independently determine the presence of the disease with the appearance of attacks of palpitations, shortness of breath, dizziness, hoarseness in the voice, a blush on the face, bursting with feelings in the chest area, swelling of the lower extremities and fainting. These signs are also characteristic in the presence of other heart diseases, therefore, as soon as aching pain in the heart appears, you should immediately contact a cardiologist to establish an accurate diagnosis.
    • Myocarditis (otherwise, inflammation of the heart muscle). The reason for its appearance is rheumatism. Symptoms of the presence of this disease: weakness, dull pain in the heart, shortness of breath, manifested even in a state of inaction. Occurring in most cases as a result of physical overstrain, myocarditis may not occur immediately, but after several days. In most cases, with proper treatment, the patient can recover completely.
    • Cardiomyopathy The collective name of the diseases affecting the myocardium, and with each pain they appear differently and in different places.
    • Pericarditis is an inflammation of the outer lining of the heart (pericardial sac). The factor causing its appearance is a viral infection. Prolonged pressing pains in the sternum are accompanied by general weakness, dry cough, heaviness in the right hypochondrium, hemoptysis and possible fever. In this case, painkillers can help.
    • Mitral valve prolapse. It is a protrusion of the cusps of the mitral heart valve into the cavity of the left atrium with a contraction of the left ventricle. This disease occurs in one fourth of the population, and women are more susceptible to it than men. The disease manifests itself often at a young age and is characterized by a duration of painful sensations with a aching and oppressive feeling. In this case, nitroglycerin will not cope with the disease.

    Two other possible and common causes of heart pain are described below.

      Depression. A disease that can bring a person out of a state of mental balance and change the quality of his life for the worse. This may be a reaction to certain negative events, against which, even in a calm state, pressing pain can occur in the area of ​​the heart. Spreading along the left s >543131 - What to do with heart pain first aid, causes and symptoms

    Tingling in the heart

    If your heart sometimes tingles, do not make yourself terrible diagnoses. Often it appears as a result of injuries or problems with the musculoskeletal system. Tingling may occur with such pathologies of the heart:

    • angina pectoris;
    • dystonia;
    • pericarditis;
    • myocardial infarction;
    • pulmonary embolism.

    fullsize - What to do with heart pain first aid, causes and symptoms

    Diseases not related to the main human motor can lead to “false” tingling symptoms:

    • intercostal neuralgia – differs from cardiac point localization;
    • osteochondrosis – such pain, unlike cardiac, disappears after taking antispasmodics;
    • instability of the nervous system – in addition to pain, there is insomnia and constant fatigue.

    Also, one should not forget that tingling in the heart can be caused by overstrain during physical exertion, fast walking, the presence of colds (flu, SARS).

    Pain in the heart and left arm

    The main “culprit” of chest pain with radiation to the left hand is called ischemia. Also, such a symptom is often noted with:

    • angina pectoris or, as it is popularly called, “angina pectoris”;
    • heart muscle infarction;
    • myocarditis;
    • atherosclerosis (plaques reduce the lumen of blood vessels, thereby preventing the heart from functioning normally).

    Pain in the heart and left arm can provoke diseases that are not related to the main organ, namely:

    • inflammation in the front of the middle part of the chest cavity, usually this happens due to injuries of the digestive system. The return of pain to the left hand occurs during inhalation/exhalation, swallowing;
    • periarthritis, arthritis, tendonitis of the shoulder joint, with such violations, the center of pain is the left shoulder joint, which radiates to the arm and chest;
    • intercostal neuralgia located on the left side. A painful spasm usually causes an awkward body turn or arm raising;
    • all kinds of pneumonia, pleurisy, tumors located on the left side of the respiratory tract. Usually in addition to pain there are: shortness of breath, cough, lack of oxygen;
    • in women – formations of a different nature and inflammatory processes in the mammary glands. With such problems, tissues are compressed, to which the nearby lymph nodes react, spreading pain to nearby tissues;
    • diseases associated with disruption of the autonomic nervous system, the manifestations of which can be pain in the sternum and aches in the left hand.

    Coronary artery disease

    Coronary artery disease. It occurs as a result of damage to the coronary cardiac arteries that carry blood and oxygen to the heart muscle. This leads to an imbalance of oxygen and nutrients between the actual possibilities of blood supply and the needs of the heart muscle. Atherosclerosis affects the narrowing of the lumen in the heart vessels, in which the latter are covered on the inside with a fat layer (subsequently hardening), which leads to their partial obstruction.

    The presence of coronary artery disease can be judged by the appearance of shortness of breath, heartburn, suffocation, weakness in the left arm, and directly heart pain. There are also painless forms that are quite dangerous, as they are detected in the later stages. The main sign of coronary disease is a complex of the appearance of various negative symptoms during physical exertion or emotional stress, which requires full oxygenation of the heart.

    Pain in the heart with pericarditis

    Pericarditis is an inflammatory lesion of a certain lining of the heart. Basically, such a pathology is a consequence (complication) of other diseases.

    • Pain with pericarditis is felt in the middle of the chest, can be given to the back, arm.
    • It is especially felt during swallowing, with deep inhalation/exhalation, coughing, in a prone position.
    • It feels like a dull, aching pain in rare cases with a cutting feeling. If you sit down or lean forward slightly, relief comes. In people suffering from this pathology, shallow breathing and heart palpitations.

    Defects of the mitral valve of the heart

    The mitral valve is located on the left side of the heart. He shares the atrium and ventricle.

    The flaws of this valve include:

    1. Mitral valve insufficiency. It is considered the most common type of heart disease, in which its wings are not closed tightly, causing blood to drain through the gap between them. Over time, the volume of blood due to the constant draining into the atrium becomes larger, leading to an increase in the chamber and thickening of its walls. With such changes, the fibrous ring is stretched, exacerbating the condition of the cusps.
    2. Mitral valve prolapse (Barlow syndrome). With such an anomaly, the flaps seem to bend towards the atrium. This occurs with systole of the left ventricle. Since the valve closure is loose, a little blood returns to the atrium. In medicine, such a syndrome is also called reverse casting.
    3. Mitral valve stenosis – when the lumen of the valve itself narrows. It happens:
    • with a thickening of its wings;
    • when they grow together.
      A defect is cons >538927 - What to do with heart pain first aid, causes and symptoms

      Heartache. First aid

      There is a certain algorithm for providing care, which is aimed at alleviating the patient’s condition and maintaining him in consciousness until the arrival of the ambulance team. First aid for heart pain:

      • reassure the patient, lay on a horizontal surface;
      • with shortness of breath and shortness of breath – give a sitting position;
      • take off tight clothing, unfasten the shirt collar;
      • measure blood pressure, pulse.

      First aid involves taking Nitroglycerin sublingually.

      In cases when a person does not know about possible pathologies of the heart, and pain in the heart appeared for the first time, then you need to do the following:

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Svetlana Borszavich

General practitioner, cardiologist, with active work in therapy, gastroenterology, cardiology, rheumatology, immunology with allergology.
Fluent in general clinical methods for the diagnosis and treatment of heart disease, as well as electrocardiography, echocardiography, monitoring of cholera on an ECG and daily monitoring of blood pressure.
The treatment complex developed by the author significantly helps with cerebrovascular injuries and metabolic disorders in the brain and vascular diseases: hypertension and complications caused by diabetes.
The author is a member of the European Society of Therapists, a regular participant in scientific conferences and congresses in the field of cardiology and general medicine. She has repeatedly participated in a research program at a private university in Japan in the field of reconstructive medicine.

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