ZocdocAnswersI get chest pain, occasional burning in the lungs, and random flutters in my thyroid area. What would cause these symptoms?

Question

I get chest pain, occasional burning in the lungs, and random flutters in my thyroid area. What would cause these symptoms?

I've been going crazy the past 2 weeks with symptoms I find it difficult to explain. I get chest pain, occasional burning in the lungs, and random flutters in my thyroid area. I can't tell if the flutters are from my esophagus or my lungs but it takes my breath away and it's very scary. Feels like a collapsing or sinking feeling right in that thyroid area. It happens mostly when I lift something, lay down on my back or when I sit in my car. It seems to be slightly worse after i drink a glass or two of alcohol. It honestly feels like I'm dying when this happens. I've even woke up in the middle of the night gasping for air Because of it. Bloodwork, including thyroid is normal and EKG and hear monitor normal although I didn't have an episode while on the machines. Please... Someone tell me what is going on with me!

Answer

I am sorry to hear about your symptoms, and I can understand how troubling and frustrating this must be. I recommend you schedule an appointment with a cardiologist, as I think it is important to rule out an arrhythmia as a cause of your symptoms. After a thorough history, physical exam, and EKG, they can recommend the appropriate additional testing you may require. Your heart normally increases its rate during periods when your organs need additional oxygen and nutrients, such as during exercise. You can also experience an abnormal increase in heart rhythm (arrhythmia), such as atrial fibrillation, atrial flutter, or AV nodal reentrant tachycardia. During these, patients often experience palpitations, lightheadedness, and chest or lung pain. The palpitations can extend into the neck, which may explain the symptoms you are having. Additionally, an anxiety disorder leading to panic attacks can cause similar symptoms, although it is still important to rule out an arrhythmia. I think an evaluation by a cardiologist would be helpful. Longterm EKG monitors can be used to capture arrhythmias that happen infrequently. There are also monitors you can place on your chest and activate only when you have to symptoms to determine if you are having an arrhythmias during these symptoms. If this workup is negative, then it will be important to look for non-cardiac causes of your symptoms.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.