In the 10th part of our series, Sandeep Ghandi, Richard Marshall, Hugh Montgomery, David Howell, and Neil Goldsack tell you how to differentiate the various causes of chest pain
In this article we shall discuss the non-cardiac causes of acute chest pain (box 1), including potential fatal causes (box 2). Chest pain can arise from any of the structures in the chest. The approach to the management of patients with chest pain is as outlined in the previous article.
The pain tends to be retrosternal, radiating to the shoulders and neck. It differs from pain of myocardial ischaemia in that it is pleuritic and is relieved by leaning forwards.