Is a stress test warranted or what other tests are recommended for my situation?

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jeffsimmons
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2014
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 7/4/2014 7:47 AM (GMT -6)   
I am considering having a stress test but it's rather expensive over here...so wondering what test might be enough...here is my information:

Good points:

- male, 45 years old, non smoker, regular exersice, 10km runs per day without any effort or exhaustion
- blood pressure in the 120/80 range all day, all night (have a machine)
- parents alive in mid 70's, grandparents lived to mid 90's , no bad heart history
- good diet, bmi 27.5

Bad points:
- used to drink a lot about 5 years ago (now every couple of weeks or so)
- pretty bad anxiety and hypochondria
- pain in the heart sometimes, not much, but noticeable, this can occur at rest, with movement or with exercise...but very mild pain that sometimes moves to other parts of my chest, not just the heart. I've had this pain for about 5 years and it comes and goes, sometimes for months on end.

The stress test is $750 in Thailand...is there another cheaper way to check if I'm ok? Additionally, I heard that stress tests to people who might not need them could cause false positives?

jujub
Elite Member


Date Joined Mar 2003
Total Posts : 10407
   Posted 7/4/2014 9:14 AM (GMT -6)   
The good news is that your good points far outweigh the bad. I would think your next step would be to consult with a good cardiologist and follow his or her recommendations. Chest pains and other "heart" symptoms can often be caused by anxiety, so do talk yourself into believing what the expert tells you. Good luck!
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jeffsimmons
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2014
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 7/4/2014 9:19 AM (GMT -6)   
thanks for the encouragement Judy

However, over here in Thailand doctors are sometimes pretty incompetent...and they will just try to take every test possible just to extort as much money as they can...!

In my case would a blood test and chest x-ray be enough?

what is worrying me is all the stories about perfectly healthy athletes dropping dead...what if my chest pain is something really dangerous?

Post Edited (jeffsimmons) : 7/4/2014 8:28:01 AM (GMT-6)


Lanie G
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Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 6368
   Posted 7/4/2014 1:45 PM (GMT -6)   
I know that anxiety can cause these symptoms. When I was going through some of these symptoms years ago, my doctor ordered a Holter Monitor which I wore for 24 hours. This is like a portable EKG machine. You make notes about what activities you're doing at certain times (eating, driving, walking, working, etc.) so the doctor who reads the results can pair up your activities with the time on the tape to see if there are any abnormalities, and this includes sleep. More recently I did a stress test (on a treadmill) and an echocardiogram because of random twinges. Even though they were not pains, the doctor ordered these tests.

So, as far as I have experienced, these are the three tests I took for this kind of symptom. An EKG in the doctor's office will tell how the heart is behaving right then and there but unless you're having those pains at that time, it cannot tell the whole story.

Google these tests so you understand what they look for. Sorry I can't advise you more but this is what I've experienced.
Lanie

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diabetes type 2 controlled by diet and exercise and
metformin
very low carb way of eating

jeffsimmons
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2014
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 7/4/2014 5:55 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks Lanie,

This is actually very good advice, I hope they have Holter monitors in Thailand...

Problem is however, that sometimes these pains vanish for like 6 months or so...they come and go, so when i have them, I might need the Holter monitor for a week or so if possible.

Lanie G
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 6368
   Posted 7/4/2014 7:32 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Jeff, this is why a cardiologist is the best doctor to consult if you can get to one. I understand your concern about the pains and also the fact that you are doing all that running although as Judy said you have a lot in your favor, health-wise.

If you can, then have some tests done to put your mind at rest, at least. And keep in mind that stress can also cause these things.
Lanie

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled by diet and exercise and
metformin
very low carb way of eating
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