What are signs of chest problems?

Chest symptoms are commonly associated with heart, lung and digestive disorders, or even physical injury. Chest symptoms, such as pain, pressure and tightness, may result from a lack of blood flow to the heart or from inflammation of the heart, lungs or esophagus. Conditions affecting the gastrointestinal system can also cause chest symptoms, including heartburn, discomfort, and burning sensation.

Reduced blood flow to the heart, which can lead to heart pain (angina), and asthma are common causes of chest symptoms. Other common causes include heartburn, indigestion, or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Inflammation or infection of the airways or bronchi (bronchitis), lungs (pneumonitis, pneumonia), lining around the lungs (pleurisy, pleuritis), or esophagus (esophagitis) can also cause chest symptoms.

Injury to musculoskeletal structures, such as ribs and chest muscles, commonly result in chest symptoms due to swelling and inflammation.

Chest symptoms can be a sign of a serious condition. It is usually not possible to accurately identify the precise cause of chest symptoms at home. Seek immediate medical care (call 911) if you experience chest symptoms along with shortness of breath, rapid heart rate, loss of consciousness, or severe trauma to the chest. Seek prompt medical care if your chest symptoms have been diagnosed but are persistent or cause you concern.


What other symptoms might occur with chest symptoms?

Chest symptoms may accompany other symptoms, which vary depending on the underlying disease, disorder or condition. Conditions that frequently affect the chest may also involve other body systems.

Cardiovascular symptoms that may occur along with chest symptoms

Chest symptoms may accompany other symptoms affecting the cardiovascular system including:


What causes chest symptoms?

Angina (brief, sharp heart pain) is a symptom of a condition called myocardial ischemia, which occurs when the heart muscle, or myocardium, doesn’t get as much oxygen-carrying blood as it needs. This usually occurs because one or more of the coronary arteries, which supply blood to the heart muscle, is narrowed or blocked. Insufficient blood supply is called ischemia.

Gastroesopha... Read more about chest symptomscauses

Medical Reviewer: William C. Lloyd III, MD, FACS Last Annual Review Date: Aug 9, 2013 Copyright: © Copyright 2014 Health Grades, Inc. All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or reprinted without permission from Health Grades, Inc. Use of this information is governed by the HealthGrades User Agreement.

This Article is Filed Under: Heart, Blood and Circulation