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Internist (Berl). 2017 Jan;58(1):22-28. doi: 10.1007/s00108-016-0169-9.

[Pulmonary causes of chest pain].

[Article in German]

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Missionsärztliche Klinik Würzburg, Akademisches Lehrkrankenhaus der Universität Würzburg, Salvatorstr. 7, 97074, Würzburg, Deutschland.


Chest pain represents one of the most frequent symptoms of pulmonary diseases, in addition to dyspnea and cough. The broad differential diagnostics include the intensely painful but prognostically benign acute pleurisy as well as potentially life-threatening events, such as acute pulmonary embolism or malignant chest diseases. Primary spontaneous pneumothorax is characterized by acute chest pain. Pain associated with a respiratory infection, such as pneumonia rarely poses a difficult diagnostic problem. Painful diseases of the lungs can be differentiated in an initial approach by asking the patient if the pain is related to breathing, which is characteristic of pleuritic chest diseases. Pulmonary hypertension, lung cancer and mesothelioma show more constant pain unrelated to respiratory movements. It is most important to differentiate pain associated with acute exacerbation of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), whereby a possible cardiac comorbidity, such as acute coronary syndrome (ACS) should always be considered.


Hypertension, pulmonary; Lung neoplasms; Pleurisy; Pneumothorax; Pulmonary embolism

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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