A chest pain that comes as an electric bolt is not something you should ignore, but it also doesn’t always indicate a heart attack. A sharp chest pain can feel different for everyone.

Sometimes, it burns; in some cases, the pain can start in your chest and then move up to your neck and jaw. It might even spread to your back or down your arms.

What Causes Sharp Pain in the Chest?

When you get a sudden, sharp pain in your chest that lasts just for a few seconds, it might feel like an electric shock or a stabbing sensation. It’s quick, and then it’s over. Following are some reasons why this might happen.

  1. Heartburn/GERD
    When stomach acid splashes up into your chest, it can cause a sudden burning or painful feeling. This is called heartburn or acid reflux. Lots of people in the US deal with every day.
  2. Precordial Catch Syndrome
    Precordial catch syndrome mostly happens in kids and young adults. It feels like a pinch in your chest and is usually harmless.
  3. Muscle Strain or Bone Pain
    If you hurt the muscles or bones in your chest, it can cause sudden, sharp pain. This often happens from working out too hard or carrying heavy stuff.
  4. Lung Problems
    Lung issues can make your chest hurt suddenly and sharply. Some of these problems are serious, so it’s important to see a doctor if you have trouble breathing or pain that gets worse when you cough or take deep breaths.
  5. Anxiety and Panic Attacks
    Feeling super anxious or having a panic attack can also cause sudden chest pain. It might feel like a heart attack, but it’s not usually as serious.
  6. Covid-19
    If someone has COVID-19, they might feel pain or pressure in their chest and have trouble breathing. They need to get medical help right away if they:

    • Feel a constant pain or pressure in their chest.
    • Have a hard time breathing.
    • Notice their lips or nails turning blue.
    • Feel confused suddenly.
    • Have trouble staying awake.
    • Heart Issues

    When people think of chest pain, they often worry about a heart attack. But there are other heart problems that can cause sudden, sharp pain, too. It’s crucial to get medical help if you have any chest pain that worries you.

How Do I Know If My Chest Pain Is Serious?

If your chest hurts a lot and it doesn’t stop after five minutes, even if you rest or take medicine, you need to get help fast. Go to the nearest emergency room right away. Chest pain can mean you’re having a heart attack, which is serious. Other signs of a heart attack include:

  • Sweating a lot.
  • Nausea.
  • Having trouble breathing.
  • Feeling dizzy or passing out.
  • Heart Palpitations.
  • Pain in your back, jaw, neck, upper belly, arm, or shoulder.

Ending Note

It is always the best idea to consult a healthcare provider, especially if you experience a sharp chest pain that triggers suddenly. Most of them are not serious, but some of them can be life-threatening.

Visit Dr. Hunaid Dollar at the Internal Medicine Diagnostic Center. Our board-certified internal medicine expert can run a thorough diagnosis to plan the right treatment for your condition. Call us at (281) 252-8600 to book an appointment.

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