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Can Constipation Cause Chest Pain?

Chest pain might result from constipation. It's critical to distinguish this from chest pain brought on by issues with the heart or blood vessels, which can occasionally be brought on by or made worse by constipation.

There may be more to constipation than merely problems with bowel motions. It might be the cause of various heart problems, including chest pain.

Let's examine the relationship between constipation and chest pain when to seek medical assistance, methods for determining the underlying reason, and treatments for constipation-related chest discomfort.


Can constipation cause chest pain?

There are two possible causes of chest pain with constipation.

Pain from gas

Gas is the most common cause of constipation-related chest pain.

There's usually a lot of gas in your intestines while you're constipated. Your abdomen may feel pressured as a result, which could produce pain and discomfort in your chest region that radiates upward.

Pain from cardiovascular issues

Constipation can lead to cardiovascular problems, such as problems with your heart or blood arteries, however, this is uncommon. A 2019 analysis of studies found that there are two possible causes for this.

First, changes to your gut microbiome—the good bacteria and other germs that reside in your stomach—can result from constipation. These modifications may result in:
  • high blood pressure
  • other cardiovascular problems
  • atherosclerosis
Secondly, straining during bowel movements—which is frequent with constipation—may raise blood pressure, which can result in several heart problems, including the following:
  • congestive heart failure
  • acute coronary syndrome
  • arrhythmia
  • tear in the aorta


What’s the link between constipation and shortness of breath?

Breathlessness is an unusual side effect of constipation. However, occasionally, the pressure and discomfort that constipation causes in your abdomen can make you feel out of breath or have trouble breathing. This feeling arises from the possibility that the pressure from the intestines may have an impact on the diaphragm, the muscle in charge of breathing.



When to contact a doctor

Should you experience dyspnea or chest pain that persists for more than two days, there may be a more pressing concern. If you have constipation and persistent chest pain or shortness of breath, make sure to consult a physician.



MEDICAL EMERGENCY

Breathlessness or chest pain may be the initial signs of a heart attack.

If you encounter any of the following signs of a heart attack, contact emergency medical services or arrange for a ride to the hospital:
  • chest pain or discomfort
  • feeling faint, unsteady, or lightheaded
  • discomfort or pain in your back, neck, or jaw
  • discomfort or pain in one or both shoulders or arms
  • shortness of breath
  • nausea
  • sweating


Diagnosing the underlying cause

An extensive physical examination will probably be conducted by a physician or other medical specialist to identify the underlying cause of your chest pain. Additionally, they will request diagnostic exams like:
  • blood tests
  • electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG)
  • CT scans, X-rays of the chest, or other types of imaging investigations
These tests can assist in determining whether constipation, heart issues, or another medical disease is the cause of the chest pain.



How to relieve chest pain from constipation?

If a gas buildup from constipation is the cause of your chest pain, there are a few things you may do to ease the discomfort and promote regular bowel movements. Among them are:
  • boosting your consumption of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes to increase your intake of fibre
  • drinking lots of water to stay hydrated throughout the day
  • exercising regularly to encourage bowel movements
  • Using stool softeners or over-the-counter laxatives while consulting a healthcare provider
  • Using methods of relaxation to lessen stress, which can lead to constipation, such as deep breathing exercises or meditation




FAQs

Can you get chest pain from constipation?

Gas is the most common cause of constipation-related chest pain. There's usually a lot of gas in your intestines while you're constipated. Your abdomen may feel pressured as a result, which could produce pain and discomfort in your chest region that radiates upward.

Can constipation affect my heart?

Age-related increases in constipation are common, as are cardiovascular risk factors. Furthermore, strain at the stools raises blood pressure, which can result in cardiovascular problems such as aortic dissection, arrhythmia, acute coronary disease, and congestive heart failure.

What does trapped gas in the chest feel like?

People frequently describe their chest tightness or discomfort as being caused by gas pain in the chest. There can be a small burning or stabbing feeling in addition to the discomfort. The abdomen could also experience the ache.



Takeaway

See a doctor right away if you have chest pain or discomfort, particularly if it's severe or accompanied by other symptoms like dizziness, shortness of breath, or pain in your arms, jaw, back, or neck.

You can alleviate constipation-related chest discomfort and improve overall digestive health by properly treating constipation with dietary and lifestyle modifications in addition to following suitable medical guidance.



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