Thoracic osteochondrosis: symptoms, feeling of pain in the heart

Chest pain in thoracic osteochondrosis

It happens that a person goes to the doctor with a heart complaint. The specialist sends him for examination, but does not reveal any pathology. It is good when a cardiologist recommends consultation with a neurologist. In this case, he can report that it is not the fault of heart disease, but osteochondrosis.

It turns out that one of the symptoms of thoracic osteochondrosis is a feeling of pain in the mammary gland or in the heart. It can be traction, pain and pressure. In some cases, there is a feeling of warmth in the chest region and rhythm disorders. Over time, the pain can get worse and worse. In this case, heart medicines do not help.

Features of heart pain in osteochondrosis

Many people have a question: can the heart hurt with osteochondrosis? Yes. Patients often complain of the following:

  1. Prolonged persistence of palpitations and chest pain.
  2. Gradually, there is pain in the heart with osteochondrosis.
  3. Pain sensations are dull and pressing.
  4. The intensity of the pain in the sternum is low.
  5. Taking nitrates does not relieve chest pain.
  6. Patients try to make fewer movements with the upper limbs, as a result of which pain sensations intensify.

Sometimes cervical and thoracic osteochondrosis appear simultaneously, in this case, additional pain occurs in the neck. The patient may complain about the following:

  • Pain in the shoulder girdle, face and neck.
  • The discomfort extends to almost the entire upper chest area, affects the muscle tissue of the spine.
  • The attack can last several hours or even days.

Sometimes the cause of reflected pain lies in the compression of the vertebral artery. In this case, the following symptoms appear:

  • dizziness;
  • deterioration of hearing and vision;
  • severe pain in the back of the head;
  • antihypertensive drugs do not give the desired effect;
  • feeling weak;
  • dyspnea;
  • loss of consciousness;
  • the rush of blood to the face.

Symptoms of osteochondrosis of the spine and how the heart hurts in women and men do not differ.
What is the effect of osteochondrosis on the heart? The disease is associated with changes in the spine, especially in the area of the spinous processes of the lower cervical vertebrae. Weakness of the little finger and a decrease in the strength of the muscles of the left hand may be felt.

How to distinguish heart pain from osteochondrosis

Heartache is short-lived

How to distinguish: is the pain due to heart pathologies or osteochondrosis? Solving the problem is not easy: in each of the two cases, the cells can emit pain and severe pain, and during physical exertion, the discomfort intensifies.

Although it is quite difficult to distinguish angina pectoris from thoracic osteochondrosis, there are signs that will help determine the true cause of the pain.
Differences in heart pain in osteochondrosis:

  1. Long duration of pain: they last for weeks and months.
  2. Seizures occur with sudden lifting of the arms and head, tilting and turning, and coughing.
  3. The pain may lessen and fade and subside when the body is in a comfortable position.
  4. With multiple violations of the ECG are not detected.
  5. When the chin is tilted to the chest, the pain intensifies, this is a sign of an intervertebral hernia.
  6. With pain, there are no anxiety and fear attacks.
  7. Prolonged standing in one position (for example, during sleep) can lead to a feeling of pain in the heart.
  8. Glycerol trinitrate does not help to get rid of pain, for this you need to use only analgesics.
  9. Heart pain in osteochondrosis with a sharp change in body position immediately intensifies, they occur when you sneeze, cough, take a deep breath and make sudden head movements.
  10. When exposed to the spine, the intensity of pain increases.
  11. Heart pain in the chest region with osteochondrosis is not life-threatening.

Now let's see how to determine what hurts the heart with angina. In this case, there will be such pains:

  • short duration;
  • not related to physical activity;
  • heart medications help stop or reduce pain;
  • pain sensations do not change if the load on the back is constant;
  • the pains have the same intensity;
  • pain sensations spread to the arm, jaw and under the shoulder blade on the left side;
  • pain can be caused by neuropsychic overload;
  • the cardiogram reflects the presence of pathologies;
  • the patient is afraid of death;
  • can cause the death of the patient.

The nature of pain in osteochondrosis

Back pain that worsens with breathing is a symptom of thoracic osteochondrosis

Many are interested in how the heart hurts with osteochondrosis. Discomfort is felt not only in the chest, but also in the upper abdomen, in the ribs and near the spine. Movements are limited by staying in the same position for a long time, while the pain intensifies. A short walk helps to get rid of anxiety.

In addition, there may be pain in the back and in the area of the shoulder blades. It can get worse when you take a deep breath. The degree of disturbance is affected by temperature (decline) and changes in atmospheric pressure.

Osteochondrosis and pain in the heart are aggravated by turning the torso. This is due to the increased load on the anterior vertebral disc. Often there is a syndrome in this area. During inhalation, pain may appear in the space between the ribs. Back muscle tension is possible, accompanied by unilateral spasms.

Sometimes the heart hurts with osteochondrosis, so it may seem that there are problems in the organs of the chest cavity. The disease can be disguised as pain in the intestines and stomach, and in some cases it can even resemble appendicitis. If measures are not taken, osteochondrosis will not only radiate to the heart, but pathology of the respiratory, cardiovascular and digestive systems will also appear.

The nature of the pain may vary. Aggravations can be replaced by forgiveness, this happens in waves.

Causes of pain in the heart with osteochondrosis

Thoracic osteochondrosis can accompany a feeling of pain in the region of the heart.

Distinguishing a heart attack from osteochondrosis is not always easy. In the human body, there is a complex system of transmission of impulses from various systems and organs to the brain and vice versa. This allows him to collect information about all systems and manage their work. As a result, a connection is formed between the nerve endings and the spinal cord, which are located in the spine. When they are violated, the transmission of impulses occurs with violations, the brain reacts incorrectly, pain appears that radiates to the chest region and the heart.

Heart pain with osteochondrosis appears in the following sequence:

  1. Changes occur in the spine due to injuries.
  2. The intervertebral disc protrudes, this does not affect the annulus fibrosus, which is prone to protrusion.
  3. If the annulus fibrosus ruptures, the center of the cartilaginous disc enters the brain canal, resulting in a herniation.
  4. osteophytes are formed.
  5. The vessels and nerves surrounding the disc begin to flatten.
  6. Emergence of pain syndrome.

With osteochondrosis, the heartbeat may become more frequent and tachycardia may appear. Spinal injuries in different areas can give different pain symptoms. Neuralgia is affected by the degree of damage:

  • vertebral body only;
  • intervertebral discs;
  • ligament apparatus;
  • paravertebral muscles.

How does osteochondrosis affect the functioning of the heart? After the deformation, the discs press on the spinal nerves. This leads to pain. Osteochondrosis can affect not only the heart, but also cause pathology of the entire spine. The disease can spread to adjacent departments, which leads to the appearance of new symptoms.

Symptoms of heart pain with osteochondrosis

Signs and symptoms of osteochondrosis with pain in the heart often occur against the background of a completely healthy cardiac system. Often they are stable, but they can appear and grow paroxysmally. In case of problems with the spine, the pains are dull, deep and pressing, their feature is dull severity. With pain in the chest region with osteochondrosis, glycerin trinitrate does not help, since the cause is not in the heart.

To distinguish heart pain from thoracic osteochondrosis, it is important to know that sensations of a different nature may appear. For example, they can spread from the affected area to the muscles of the front of the chest, with which the cervical roots from the fifth to the seventh are connected. In this case, the pain can be felt in the upper left part of the body, sometimes also affecting a part of the face. At the same time, vascular disorders are not diagnosed, the ECG does not reveal abnormalities. This happens even at the peak of pain.

How does thoracic osteochondrosis affect the human heart and body?

Osteochondrosis of the thoracic spine negatively affects the heart

One of the manifestations of osteochondrosis is the squeezing or constriction of blood vessels. This leads to a narrowing of the "channels" through which the blood passes. In order for the organs to continue to receive it in the right amount, the heart must work more actively. This means that the number of contractions increases per minute. As a result, blood pressure increases. This is the effect of osteochondrosis on the heart.

Violations in the work of the circulatory system lead to the appearance of pain in the heart with osteochondrosis of the chest and oxygen starvation of the brain. As a result, the above symptoms appear. Reaction, speed of thinking, emotional state, orientation in space and memory depend on the work of the heart, as well as problems with vision or hearing.
Because of all these consequences, it becomes difficult to determine whether the heart hurts or it is thoracic osteochondrosis.


How to determine that the heart hurts from osteochondrosis? There are special procedures that will help determine the form and extent of the disease. When the disease worsens, it is better to consult a doctor. Doctors may advise you to undergo a differential diagnosis, which allows you to determine what is the cause of the disease - the heart or the spine. It may include the following procedures:

  • Electrocardiogram. When recording an ECG, it will be possible to immediately identify cardiac pathology. If the results are normal, then it will become clear that the cause of the pain is neuralgia or osteochondrosis.

    An ECG is a mandatory diagnostic procedure for the formation of chest pain.

  • ultrasound. It is performed for patients with suspected infectious heart lesions. It is used as an additional method.
  • Radiography. X-ray is prescribed for patients with suspected osteochondrosis. Photographs will allow determining the destructive destruction of joints. With cardiac problems, they will not suffer.
  • CT and MRI. They can help if X-rays are inconclusive. These methods will more accurately determine the lesion. Magnetic resonance imaging will help diagnose osteochondrosis and cardiac pathology.


Rest and bed rest will help relieve pain in osteochondrosis. The surface should not be too soft or hard. The pillow is chosen in such a way that the neck does not bend. You can ease the pain by placing a non-hot heating pad under it.

Treatment of thoracic osteochondrosis is carried out with such means:

  1. Medications:
    • vasodilators;
    • neurotropic drugs;
    • diuretic drugs;
    • analgesic;
    • non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs;
    • chondroprotectors;
    • soothing.
  2. Physiotherapy. The patient undergoes procedures in which the affected area is affected by an electric field and current with a variable frequency. This will help start the mechanism of natural tissue regeneration.
  3. Using turpentine, ointments containing snake or bee venom, as well as painkillers. They activate the release of heat in the muscles, improve the condition of the nerve roots, expand blood vessels.
  4. Acupuncture. With the help of needles, the energy meridians and active points are touched.
  5. Manual therapy. Thanks to them, degenerative processes in the spine are corrected and effects are made on the intervertebral joints.
  6. Back massage will not allow you to get the desired effect. The muscles are located around the vertebral discs, it is almost impossible to reach them. The effect gives extremely deep and acupressure massage. Before this procedure, it is recommended to take painkillers.
  7. At home, you can use warm heating pads and warm compresses to reduce muscle tone.

Manual therapy and acupressure should be performed only by a qualified orthopedist, neuropathologist or traumatologist who has undergone special training and received the appropriate certificate.

Taking heart medications is usually the first and most powerful treatment for a disease. When used with other methods, the results can be greatly improved. Armed with knowledge, it's time to start treatment!

self-treatment errors

Often, patients with complaints of a disease of the thoracic spine make a serious mistake during self-treatment - they take drugs if there are contraindications for them. For example, the older generation likes to use NSAIDs from the group of phenylacetic acid derivatives. However, it cannot be used for problems with the stomach lining. They are typical for people over 50 years old.

So, we looked at the difference and what are the differences between the symptoms of angina pectoris and osteochondrosis, and also got acquainted with the methods of diagnosis and treatment. Work with qualified doctors and follow their instructions. Be persistent and consistent and you will be able to overcome this painful and dangerous disease! Remember, it can be very dangerous. As long as the patient can be released from military service.