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What causes chest pain and shortness of breath? 52 possible conditions

See a list of possible causes in order from the most common to the least.


Heart Attack Overview

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

A clot blocks the blood flow to the heart (heart attack), and damages heart muscle. Symptoms include chest pain, shortness of breath, and a blue or grey tinge to the skin.

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Pneumonia is an infection of the lungs caused by fungi, bacteria, or viruses. General symptoms include chest pain, fever, cough, and difficulty breathing.

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Lung Cancer Overview

Lung cancer is a cancer that originates in the lungs. Lung cancer often goes undetected in the early stages, since symptoms don't usually present themselves until the advanced stages of the disease.

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Abnormal Heart Rhythms

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

An abnormal heart rhythm (arrhythmia) is a change in the heart's beating pattern. There are many different types with different causes and effects. Possible symptoms are feeling faint, chest pain, and sweating.

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Chronic Bronchitis

People often develop acute bronchitis after a viral chest infection. Blue-colored lips ankle or foot swelling can result.

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Hypertensive Heart Disease

Hypertensive heart disease refers to heart conditions caused by high blood pressure. Possible signs of acute hypertension include sweating and chills.

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High Blood Pressure Overview

High blood pressure (hypertension) increases your risk for heart attack, stroke, coronary heart disease, and other serious health problems. Left untreated, high blood pressure can damage blood vessels and vital organs.

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Cor Pulmonare

Cor pulmonale causes the right ventricle to enlarge and pump blood less effectively than it should. Shortness of breath, chronic cough, and a blue tint to the mouth and fingernails are all symptoms.

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Costochondritis (Tietze's Syndrome)

Costochondritis is inflammation of the cartilage where the ribs attach to the breastbone. Pain worsens if you move, stretch, or breathe deeply. Women and those over 40 are most commonly diagnosed with this condition.

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Congestive (Dilated) Cardiomyopathy

Congestive cardiomyopathy, also known as dilated cardiomyopathy, is characterized by a weak primary pumping chamber in the heart. Your heart automatically attempts to correct for this inefficiency. In turn, thi...

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Pulmonary Embolism

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

A pulmonary embolism is a blood clot that affects blood flow to the lungs. It can damage part of the lung due to restricted blood flow, decrease blood oxygen. The most common symptom is shortness of breath.

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Rheumatic Fever

Rheumatic fever is a possible and potentially serious complication of strep throat. It tends to occur in children between five and 15 years old. Rash is one possible sign of this condition.

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Anemia happens when the number of healthy red blood cells in your body is too low. Red blood cells carry oxygen to all of the body's tissues.

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Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) occurs when the heart muscle (myocardium) becomes thicker than normal. This interferes with your heart's ability to pump blood. Possible symptoms are dizziness, chest pain, and more.

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An empyema is a condition in which pus collects in the pleural space, which is the area between your lungs and the inner surface of your chest wall.

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Tuberculosis (TB) is a highly infectious disease that primarily affects the lungs. A severe and long-lasting cough, fever, and night sweats could indicate an active TB infection.

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Coronary Artery Disease (CAD) Overview

CAD occurs when one or more of the coronary arteries begin to narrow due to the build-up of cholesterol and plaque. The blockage of one of these arteries leads to a heart attack.

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Ischemic Cardiomyopathy

Ischemic cardiomyopathy is a condition that occurs when the heart muscle is weakened due to insufficient blood flow to the heart's muscle. This inhibits the heart's ability to pump blood and can lead to heart failure.

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Pericarditis is the inflammation of the sac that surrounds your heart. The sac is a double-layered membrane called the pericardium. The pericardium protects your heart and helps it function properly.Pericarditis can b...

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Myocarditis is inflammation of the heart muscle. It is a rare condition that can be caused by any number of autoimmune diseases, viral, bacterial, or fungal infections, or parasites. When you have an infection or a...

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This feature is for informational purposes only and should not be used to diagnose.
Please consult a healthcare professional if you have health concerns.