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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    Should I be concerned about a tightening sensation in my chest?

    Within the last few weeks I have developed a tightening of the chest; like bad indigestion; my left arm feels sore and my left hand feels as though it is swollen and has the pins and needles sensation. The trouble is I do believe, or I tell myself; it is indigestion. This is mainly due to the belching that goes with it and the fact the chest tightness disappears afterwards.
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    Anonymous

    Chest pain or tightening is always a concern and can be challenging to diagnose. The symptoms that you are describing need  evaluation to be sure that your heart is OK.
    Chest pain may be caused by poor blood flow to the heart leading to angina or by a sudden blockage in the coronary arteries resulting in a heart attack.
    The symptoms of a heart attack are similar to other conditions, so your chest tightening may have nothing to do with your heart. The best thing for you to do is make an appointment with your G.P to rule out any heart problems.
    If any activity brings on chest pain, stop what you are doing and if it persists call an ambulance. If you have any doubt about your pain, call an ambulance.

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