Pain in your chest could result from indigestion after a heavy meal, but there's also a chance of it being a sign of cardiovascular disease. If you're experiencing chest pain, board-certified specialist Ramzan Zakir, MD, of Cardiac & Vascular Interventions of New Jersey can help. At his practice in New Brunswick, New Jersey, Dr. Zakir uses advanced diagnostics to determine the cause of your chest pain and provides cutting-edge treatments. To arrange your consultation, call the office or use the online booking form today.
Chest pain can sometimes be a significant symptom of heart problems, but in many cases, the pain is due to less serious causes.
You might have a pulled chest muscle or be experiencing a bout of acid reflux (heartburn), or there could be another explanation. However, if you don't know what caused the pain, you should seek medical advice in case the cause is heart-related.
Angina is chest pain that's due to heart trouble. It isn't a specific disease but a symptom of an underlying heart condition.
Angina develops when your heart muscle isn't receiving the amount of oxygen it needs. The pain feels like something is compressing your upper body, and may radiate into your shoulders, arms, neck, back, and jaw.
Heart disease due to atherosclerosis is the most likely cause of angina. Atherosclerosis is a condition that arises from excess cholesterol in your blood. The cholesterol forms plaque, which sticks to the artery walls and makes them narrower.
Atherosclerosis in your heart arteries is called coronary artery disease (CAD), a frequent cause of heart attacks.
Diagnosing your chest pain involves having a physical exam with Dr. Zakir. He listens to your heart and lungs, measures your blood pressure, and may take a blood sample to check for high cholesterol.
You then undergo a painless diagnostic test called an electrocardiogram (ECG). The ECG measures the electrical signals in your heart and identifies urgent issues like heart attacks. If Dr. Zakir needs to see images of your heart, he might order an echocardiogram (chest ultrasound).
These investigations are likely to find what's causing your chest pain. However, if they don't, more specialized Holter monitoring, stress testing, or nuclear imaging may be necessary.
The treatment Dr. Zakir recommends for you depends on the underlying cause of your chest pain. Possible therapies include:
If lifestyle changes and medication aren't sufficient to resolve your chest pain, you might need to undergo a minimally invasive cardiac catheterization procedure called balloon angioplasty.
Dr. Zakir feeds a tiny tube (catheter) into an artery (usually in your groin) until it reaches the narrowed arteries. He then inflates a small balloon to compress the plaque lining the artery walls.
In many cases, he also inserts a stent — a small tube of metal mesh — into the artery to help it stay open.
If you have chest pain, find out why and get the treatment you need by calling Cardiac & Vascular Interventions of New Jersey today or booking an appointment online.