February is Heart Health Month. Chronic pain conditions and heart disease which often coincide or occur as a result of the other. It is imperative that you and your doctor closely monitor your health to recognize the early signs of either condition.
Chronic Pain Leading to Heart Conditions
Chronic pain is one of the most common health conditions in the U.S. The CDC estimates that almost one in five American adults, or almost 50 million, suffer from pain lasting 6 months or longer. Long term chronic pain can produce severe stress and anxiety, leading to elevated blood pressure and pulse rate. Prolonged pain can strain many physiological systems, especially the heart and circulatory system, damaging cardiac tissue and blood vessels, leading to severe cardiac episodes, stroke or even death.
Indirectly, many chronic pain patients lead inactive lives that result in poor diet and obesity. Obesity contributes to heart disease by raising triglycerides and blood sugar, both risk factors for heart disease.
Heart Conditions Leading to Chronic Pain
Heart disease is the leading cause of death for American men and women. Almost 630,000 Americans die from this disease annually, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Risks of heart disease include:
- Family history
- Inactive lifestyle
- Excessive alcohol use
- Poor diet
- Tobacco use
Patients experiencing heart failure may also suffer from pain related to inflammation, ischemia and neuropathy. Pain symptoms may also be aggravated by anxiety, insomnia, and depression. Chest pains, difficulty breathing or chest discomfort could be symptoms of heart conditions such as arrhythmia, atrial fibrillation, coronary artery disease and heart valve disease.
Treating Heart Disease and Chronic Pain
At FX Spine & Performance Center,
evaluations are focused on the “ROOT CAUSE” of pain & dysfunction. How to proceed with treatment will be determined by any underlying issues, such as heart disease or other circulatory system conditions. To schedule an initial consultation with Dr. Nicholas DeAngelo to discuss your chronic pain symptoms or related concerns, call us at (706) 842-6800