We’ve all heard embarrassing stories from friends or family members who experienced chest pains and believed they were having a heart attack – only to find out it was heartburn from a heavy meal they’d recently eaten.
While it’s true that heartburn can present itself in the form of chest pain, there are other real-life incidents that validate the need to seek emergency medical care in Houston when experiencing chest pains.
Several years ago, at a YMCA in Cypress, TX, a very fit 40-year old man was jogging on a treadmill – something he’d done every day after work for the past several years.
About 10 minutes into his jog, he started to feel a little uncomfortable in his chest, but he shrugged it off as the heavy lunch he’d eaten at a business meeting earlier that day. So, he pushed through his workout.
A few minutes later, he collapsed on the treadmill from a fatal heart attack.
Even though his story was sudden in its onset and severe in its conclusion, the lesson is the same for everyone reading this: never ignore chest pain.
There Could Be More to Your Chest Pain Than You Think
Although the two most common reasons for someone to experience tightness in their chest are indigestion and heart-related issues such as angina, an aortic aneurysm, cardiomyopathy, or a heart attack, there are many other reasons why people visit an emergency room in Houston.
Respiratory conditions such as a pulmonary embolism, a collapsed lung, asthma, pneumonia, or chronic obstructive lung disease (commonly known as COPD), could also be factors to a patient’s distress.
Fortunately, an emergency room near you, such as Memorial Heights ER, can provide the testing needed to pinpoint the exact cause of the distress.
In diagnosing certain conditions, testing and observation are critical in the treatment and monitoring of conditions such as those mentioned earlier. At Memorial Heights ER, we have a comprehensive specialist team available 24/7 to help patients recover as quickly and effectively as possible.
Another potential cause of unexplained chest pain is lung cancer. Medical professionals recommend that anyone who experiences coughing that produces blood seek immediate care – especially if the cough is accompanied by back and chest pain that worsens when breathing.
Chest Pain from Digestive Causes Still Warrant Treatment from an ER Near You
As mentioned earlier in this article, many of you reading this may have experienced chest tightness after eating a rich meal, but did you know that even that type of distress may warrant a trip to an ER near you since it could be a sign of an underlying condition that is more extreme than mere heartburn?
A few other conditions that could be contributors include gallstones or pancreatitis – all of which require testing from a medical facility such as Memorial Heights Emergency Center before a treatment protocol can be established.
What the American Heart Association Has to Say About Chest Pain
The nation’s leading authority on heart health says that you should not wait to get help if you experience any of the following heart attack warning signs:
- Pains in your chest such as tightness, fullness, or other discomforts
- Discomfort in areas of your body other than your chest – such as your neck, jaw, arms, shoulder, or stomach
- Sudden and unexplained shortness of breath or nausea
- Breaking out into a cold sweat for reasons other than menopause or flu-related symptoms
It’s also important to remember that the symptoms of a heart attack are often different for men and women. Although the most common symptom for both genders will be chest pain, the American Heart Association reminds women that they may experience symptoms such as shortness of breath, nausea and/or vomiting, and back or jaw pain, as well. That’s why knowing the warning signs is so critically important.
Take the Guesswork Out of the Equation
At Memorial Heights Emergency Center, your health is our number one priority. Doesn’t it just make sense to get a full and accurate diagnosis instead of wondering – and worrying – whether or not your chest pain is linked to a life-threatening condition?