A feeling in my chest

By Gulcherboy Latest Reply 2013-02-05 18:36:24 -0600
Started 2012-01-13 07:21:58 -0600

After a couple of hours at work or when I have to exert myself, I get a feeling of pressure in the center of my chest. It's not a pain, really and it does not radiate at all. In fact, I usually find myself thinking something like, "Boy, I can really feel how big my heart has gotten!" I was diagnosed with CHF about six weeks ago. Does anyone know what's going on at those times and do I need to go off to the ED? (I don't yet have a regular doctor — but that's another story.) BTW: When I sit down and rest, the sensation goes away in — literally — a few minutes.

6 replies

redorangedog 2012-01-21 02:49:26 -0600 Report

Redorangedog, HeartHawk is right. The only way to get a proper diagnosis is to go to the ED when this pressure pain is happening. Pressure in the middle of your chest could be a heart problem, why wait? A simple x-ray could tell if your heart is enlarged which can happen in CHF. A stress test, echo and cardiac cath will give you a cardiac diagnosis. Do you have gastric reflux? Do you have pain when you touch your sternum where your ribs connect? It can be several things but, how could anyone know unless you see a doctor when this is occurring. Red

Gulcherboy 2012-01-23 17:35:21 -0600 Report

Thanks, redorangedog. I appreciate your thoughtful response. You, of course, have no was of knowing these things, but I have some of those answers, already. Yes, I have an enlarged heart and, yes, I have heart disease — CHF. Nope to the history of gastric reflux. No pain when I touch my sternum. In fact, I can feel my hand on my sternum, but that's all — it makes the feeling neither better nor worse. I get the feeling only when I am at work, so leaving when I am having it just ain't gonna happen. Besides, it would be gone by the time I got to an ED. Beyond that, I'm still paying on the bills from the hospital visit when they diagnosed my CHF; I am bill-averse these days.

Beyond all of that — you've got a great looking dog as your profile pic. And I genuinely appreciate your kind response!


redorangedog 2012-01-23 22:38:18 -0600 Report

Hi Gulcher, Thank you for the genuine, polite reply, The diagnosis of CHF is a lot to deal with. The proper nutrition, weight management, exercise, a good night of sleep, stress management and paying for expensive medical care can be difficult to deal with especially if you do not have the support of good insurance. Just dealing with the the high price of medical care is a source of stress. If this tightness in your chest only happens at work and when you exert yourself, maybe you are pushing yourself too hard and not aware of it. If this happens only when you are only at work and that you feel better when you leave, just consider that the job is putting more stress on your body since you were diagnosed with CHF. I truly understand what it is like to be 'bill-averse' while you working and trying to manage with health challenges. (I think you coined a new word.) If you can try to notice what triggers these episodes, you may get a better understanding of why this is happening to your body. It might be helpful to keep a journal of the what you are doing, where it is happening and how long these episodes last in writing to get a clearer picture of what sets it off.

Thank you for noticing my beloved girl (the real redorangedog) the most beautiful and gentle companion.

I wish you well, Red

HeartHawk 2012-01-23 23:35:15 -0600 Report


More excellent advice regarding the journal. Docs really love this kind of hard data. So often they are left to guess based on vague reports from patients because without notes it is hard to remember accurately what you experienced.


HeartHawk 2012-01-13 22:43:00 -0600 Report


Hmmm, could be a lot of things actually. To rule out the heart as the source this would be a classic application of a treadmill stress test. I would call the office of whoever diagnosed your CHF and see what they say. If they do not give you satisfaction your only option may be to go to the emergency room. Where the heart is concerned it is better to be safe than sorry.