When Should I be Concerned About Lingering Chest Pain?

By: Dr. William Fieldsmith


Chest pain can quickly turn life-threatening. If you have lingering chest pain, you need to visit the closest emergency or immediate care center or call 911. Do not wait around if your chest pain lasts for longer than five minutes or does not go away after taking medication or resting. Chest pain is often the number one sign of a heart attack. 

Dr. William Fieldsmith is a board-certified physician at Rockwall Rapid Care in Rockwall, TX. If you are suffering from lingering chest pain, Dr. Fieldsmith will carry out a complete examination to determine the cause. Sometimes, chest pain is only a pulled muscle, bronchitis, or indigestion. However, at other times, ongoing chest pain is a sign of something more serious. A complete evaluation by Dr. Fieldsmith can determine the cause of your chest pain. 

All about chest pain 

Often, when a person suffers from chest pain, the first thing they fear is a heart attack. Chest pain caused by a heart attack often feels like pressure. The discomfort can run from the chest to the jaw, neck, and arm. Women may also experience nausea, fatigue, and shortness of breath. 

Chest pain can also be a symptom of other heart problems. Angina is a term used to refer to chest discomfort that can arise from heart damage or coronary heart disease. It occurs when plaque forms in the heart's arteries, which causes a slowdown of blood flow. The large vessels can start to narrow. Angina usually feels like chest pressure which is made worse when active and goes away when you rest. 

Heart failure can also lead to chest pain. With heart failure, your heart simply cannot pump a sufficient amount of oxygen-rich blood to meet the body’s needs. Sufferers of heart failure will experience wheezing, coughing, and shortness of breath. Heart failure sufferers will also notice a buildup of fluid in the legs and lungs. 

Lung problems and chest pain 

Lingering chest pain can also arise from lung problems such as a pulmonary embolism. If a blood clot travels to your pulmonary system, then it can quickly become a life-threatening situation. Blood clots in the lungs often arise from deep vein thrombosis when a blood clot in the legs breaks away and travels to the lungs, where it lodges itself in your respiratory tract, causing breathing difficulties, coughing (with or without blood), and chest pain. 

Pneumonia can also lead to persistent chest pain. Chest pain is often one of the first symptoms, coupled with difficulty in breathing and a cough. Additional symptoms of pneumonia include chills, shortness of breath, and chest pain. 

If you have sustained a chest injury, you could have a collapsed lung (pneumothorax). The chest injury could be so severe that your lung collapses, causing air to become trapped between the ribcage and the lung. If you suffer from a collapsed lung, then you will experience lightheadedness, a bluish tint to your skin, rapid heart rate, and fatigue. 

Other chronic lung conditions that cause chest pain include chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), cystic fibrosis, or asthma. 

Schedule a chest pain consultation in Rockwall, TX 

Are you suffering from lingering chest pain? If so, you should go to an emergency room or urgent care facility to find out what is causing the chest pain. Dr. William Fieldsmith at Rockwell Rapid Care in Rockwall, TX will carry out a complete examination to learn what is causing your chest pain. 

Contact us today to learn more.