Anxiety Can Mimic A Heart Attack

Although people typically think of anxiety as a mental condition, it causes a number of physical symptoms. Severe anxiety, particularly panic attacks, causes many people to wonder whether they are having a heart attack. Chest pain can certainly be a symptom of anxiety, along with other common symptoms such as heart palpitations, a racing heartbeat, shortness of breath, nausea, cold sweats, and lightheadedness.

Unfortunately, these are all also heart attack symptoms--something that is not likely to help you remain calm when you’re trying to determine whether your chest pain is caused by anxiety or something more serious. Chest pain is a very alarming symptom, and many anxiety sufferers mistakenly believe they’re suffering a heart attack. If you’re ever unsure about the cause of chest pain, it’s a good idea to get a medical opinion--it may turn out to be anxiety-related, but it’s better to err on the side of caution. Anxiety is very common, but so is heart disease.

Chest pain due to anxiety is most likely caused by muscle contractions in the chest wall, where the pain tends to be localized and is often a sharp pain that is either fleeting or interrupts a breath. The anxiety causing the chest pain will often exacerbate the condition. If the pain is caused by anxiety, it will often go away if you get the anxiety under control, although a soreness may remain for a time.

Anxiety Support Groups

Latest Post by digby Tue, 11/12/2019 - 5:48pm
Comments: 1
Latest Post by digby Tue, 11/12/2019 - 5:49pm
Comments: 2
Latest Post by MillieM Mon, 11/04/2019 - 3:23pm
Comments: 1
Latest Post by MillieM Mon, 11/04/2019 - 2:58pm
Comments: 2

More Articles

This article was written for Living With Anxiety by Sam Kaplan, a student at Colby College. This is his story of life with a panic disorder....

Sleep anxiety is a generalized worry about getting enough sleep or quality sleep. Like other types of anxiety, it feeds on itself so that the...

A couple dozen people are waiting to board a plane, and at the last minute the flight is delayed...

One person immediately runs up to the...

One of the most prescribed drugs for the treatment of acute anxiety, valium has a host of other uses. It can treat alcohol withdrawal symptoms,...

Stressful life events are difficult for everyone, but they can be especially hard on those who already have an anxiety disorder. A recent study...

More Articles

Anxiety attacks are very frightening experiences, and for chronic sufferers, they can seriously impact everyday life. While there are things you...

Benzodiazepines are a generally well-tolerated class of psychoactive drugs commonly used to treat anxiety disorders. While they are considered to...

In the first study of its kind in this specific patient population, researchers from Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health found...

Tenormin (known generically as atenolol) is a beta blocker often used to control the physical symptoms of anxiety. Beta blockers are quite...

The monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) tranylcypromine (brand name: Parnate) is an antidepressant sometimes used for the treatment of anxiety...

For sufferers of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), prolonged exposure (PE) therapy is a proven, effective treatment. Sometimes referred to as...

Nortriptyline, marketed in the United States under the trade names Pamelor and Aventyl, is a tricyclic antidepressant approved by the FDA to treat...

The adrenal glands, located above the kidneys, produce a variety of essential hormones. When these glands don't produce enough of one or more of...

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, or OCD, is a mental disorder in which anxious thoughts repeatedly drive them to compulsive behavior. With Obsessive...

The fourth version of the diagnostic manual for mental disorders, or DSM-IV, has now been replaced by a fifth revision, called the DSM-5.

...

The terms panic attack and anxiety attack are used interchangeably by most people, but are panic and anxiety really the same thing?

Panic...

Librium, known generically as chlordiazepoxide, is a benzodiazepine used to relieve anxiety and to control the agitation that is a side effect of...

Calming your anxiety and nerves is easier said than done. “Just relax” doesn’t work, and “it’s okay” doesn’t help! So what do you do?

First...

One of the most prescribed drugs for the treatment of acute anxiety, valium has a host of other uses. It can treat alcohol withdrawal symptoms,...

When people talk about treatments for anxiety, they usually focus on medication and therapy as the two main options for a successful outcome....