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Starting several years ago, I would get very sharp and searing pains and spasms in my chest every 3 or so months. The pain was so much that I am left energyless and fatigued for several minutes after the pains. They are located where my right breast is, but underneath, where the ribs seem to be. However, I was very stressed this February and I started getting over 30-40 of those pains DAILY. The frequency and intensity increased when my stress levels increased, and decreased likewise. Other symptoms also accompany these pains. I find it hard to breathe, and no matter how deep I breathe, it doesn't seem to be enough, and my ribs start to hurt but my body feels like I don't have enough air. My entire chest feels like someone is sitting on it, and I start to get dizzy, and my eyes start to lose focus when this happens. Sometimes I will begin to shake uncontrollably and become very cold to the touch. Can anyone help me diagnose these symptoms? I'm kind of worried. Thank you!


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replied March 21st, 2007
Diagnostic Techniques & Treatments Answer A2473
According to your age (16) and the symptoms you report (chest pain and breathing difficulties that become worse when under stress), it seems that you are experiencing some kind of somatoform disorder. Somatoform disorder is typical for people your age and is due to psycho-emotional stress. During this mental disorder, psycho-emotional problems transform into physical symptoms very similar to those found in real, organic diseases. Nonetheless, you can go to your primary health provider to exclude heart or chest disorders. A physical examination and an ECG would probably be enough. An X-ray image of the chest can be done, if necessary.
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