Information in simple English

What is chest pain?

Chest pain is the pain or discomfort in the chest, usually in the front. It may feel like a sharp, stabbing pain.


pain in the shoulder arm, upper abdomen, or jaw, along with nausea, sweating, or shortness of breath


  • Serious:
    • Acute coronary syndrome (including heart attacks)
    • pulmonary embolism
    • pneumothorax
    • pericarditis
    • aortic dissection
    • esophageal rupture
  • Common:
    • Gastroesophageal reflux disease
    • psychological problems such as anxiety disorders, depression, stress, etc.
    • muscle or skeletal pain
    • pneumonia
    • shingles