Like a thousand needles stabbing your heart

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ShawnD
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Main Question or Discussion Point

What is it called when you get a sudden chest pain that lasts for just a second or two? Homer Simpsons described it as a feeling of a thousand needles stabbing into his heart.

I tried to google it but all I got was emo poetry. Your wordth are like a thouthand needleth thtabbing into my heart. /wrists
 
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  • #3
ShawnD
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Thanks!
 
  • #5
turbo
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You're right, Evo. If the pain is brief and near the area of the heart, Shawn should be hieing himself to the local saw-bones. Angina could be a sign of a serious problem.
 
  • #6
chroot
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I believe that angina lasts longer that just a few seconds. I'm no doctor, though, so maybe I'm wrong. Side stitches can be so painful that it's hard to tell exactly where the pain is coming from.

- Warren
 
  • #7
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better safe than sorry--


if you haven't called the DR. for an appt. yet, .....----
 
  • #8
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Any speculation may be off. Could be anything. That's what doctors are for to sort out.
 
  • #9
chroot
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Sometimes I'll get a stabbing "chest pain" while eating, when accidentally swallowing an uncomfortably large bubble of air.

- Warren
 
  • #10
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Sometimes I'll get a stabbing "chest pain" while eating, when accidentally swallowing an uncomfortably large bubble of air.

- Warren
you mean, you'd rather swallow many smaller air bubbles more comfortably?
 
  • #11
chroot
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you mean, you'd rather swallow many smaller air bubbles more comfortably?
It's a good party trick.

- Warren
 
  • #12
chemisttree
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Perhaps it's voodoo. But a thousand needles is probably an exaggeration. It's usually only one or two needles applied in rapid succession.

Bad ju ju!

Edit: Wait a minute! When you googled "stabbing chest pain" you got poetry? I got http://www.doctorslounge.com/cardiology/forums/backup/topic-3971.html" [Broken]
 
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  • #13
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ouchupuncture
 
  • #14
dst
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you mean, you'd rather swallow many smaller air bubbles more comfortably?
Worst stomach aches ever :grumpy. Worst of all, you can't stop it from happening.
 
  • #15
Moonbear
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Just a second or two could be anything, yes, including a bit of a gas bubble.

I think of a stitch as being in the side, below the ribcage, not in the chest. But, we don't have pain receptors in the organs contained within the chest and abdomen, so sensations of pain, unless they're directly from a sore muscle, are referred pain. You perceive it out on the body wall somewhere when it could be coming from a lot of places internally. Why this happens is not really well understood.

If it happens repeatedly, then I'd get it checked out. If it's just a one-time thing, and really short in duration (a couple seconds), I wouldn't be too worried.
 
  • #16
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I get this sometimes, usually happens along with breathing in deep. If I breathe in deep and get the sharp needle pain I just take real short breathes until it goes away after a few minutes.
 
  • #17
Moonbear
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I get this sometimes, usually happens along with breathing in deep. If I breathe in deep and get the sharp needle pain I just take real short breathes until it goes away after a few minutes.
A few minutes is a lot longer than a few seconds. You should get that checked out. A deep breath shouldn't cause pain.
 
  • #18
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A few minutes is a lot longer than a few seconds. You should get that checked out. A deep breath shouldn't cause pain.
The pain doesn't last throughout the few minutes. But when I take a deep breathe within the few minutes then I get the sharp middle left chest pain. I always just thought it was a gas bubble.
 
  • #19
Moonbear
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I dunno. Probably nothing urgent if it just happens once in a while and not every time you take a deep breath, but probably worth a mention on the next checkup just to be sure, especially if it's happening in the same place each time.
 
  • #20
Evo
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Hmmm, I'd never heard of this before - Precordial catch syndrome

PCS manifests itself as an intense, sharp pain typically below the left, but sometimes right, nipple or breast which is worse when taking breaths. This typically lasts 30 seconds to 3 minutes and then is resolved as quickly as it began.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Precordial_catch_syndrome

Dr Bear, what is your opinion on this article?
 
  • #22
Moonbear
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Hmmm, I'd never heard of this before - Precordial catch syndrome



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Precordial_catch_syndrome

Dr Bear, what is your opinion on this article?
I hadn't heard of that before either, so don't really know what to think of it.

Though, this comment:
Although deep inhalation during a PCS attack will likely cause an increase in pain, many have found that forcing themselves to breathe as deeply as possible will result in a "popping" sensation which quickly and completely resolves the PCS episode.
leads me to concur with the following paragraph that it could be a pinched nerve. The location they are describing the pain is a place where a fairly large nerve branch passes through the chest wall to innervate pectoral muscles. If it's being pinched in some way between the muscles, and stretched on inspiration, that would make some sense. But, that's complete guessing. It's not entirely implausible at least. And, when they describe it mostly occurring in children, it could be something stretched or pinched due to rapid growth spurts.
 
  • #23
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It doesn't sound like side stitch. Side stitch lasts longer and is lower on the sides of your stomach, almost the kidney region.
 

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