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Conditions Other Than Coronary Artery Disease and Heart Attack That Cause Chest Pain

While chest pain is typical of a heart attack and coronary artery disease, it may also be caused by:

Digestive system problems.

  • Stomach acid moving upward into the esophagus (esophageal reflux or heartburn)
  • Muscle spasm of the esophagus
  • Gallbladder disease
  • A sore in the lining of the stomach or small intestine (peptic ulcer)

Inflammation.

  • Inflammation of the membrane surrounding the lungs (pleurisy)
  • Inflammation of the membrane covering the heart (pericarditis)

Heart, lung, and heart valve problems.

  • A tear in the wall of the aorta (aortic dissection)
  • Narrowing of the aortic valve (aortic stenosis)
  • A blood clot in one of the arteries of the lungs (pulmonary embolism)

Other causes.

  • Panic, anxiety, stress, or depression
  • Shingles (herpes zoster), a reactivation of the chickenpox virus that causes pain and a rash
  • Pain in the bones and/or muscles of the chest wall
By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer John M. Miller, MD - Electrophysiology
Last Revised April 4, 2011

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: April 04, 2011
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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