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Can Heart Problems Cause Knee Pain

Preventing Peripheral Arterial Disease

“Can Knee Pain Cause Back Pain?”

The advice for preventing PAD, or stopping it before it gets serious, is largely the same as the advice for preventing a heart attack or stroke: Quit smoking, eat healthier, get more exercise, control your blood sugar if you have diabetes, lose weight, and get your blood pressure and cholesterol levels checked. And ask your doctor if you should take a daily aspirin to prevent clots, or drugs to reduce your blood pressure and cholesterol.

Even though PAD makes peoples legs hurt or feel tired when they walk or exercise a symptom that doctors call claudication which feels like a Charlie horse type cramp one of the best things to do is to walk more, says Stanley.

The more a patient walks, the more likely it is that they will develop little detour blood vessels, called collateral vessels, around the obstruction, he explains. The large majority of people can develop these vessels that will ease the pain.

But in some people, PAD has already gotten bad enough to cause pain or numbness even when the person is sleeping something called rest pain. Stanley says this pain often awakens patients from sleep. It most often occurs in the ball of the feet and may feel like someone has wrapped a bandage around the foot. This level of symptoms is ominous, he says, because it indicates a more severe blockage without adequate collateral vessels.

Can Vein Problems Cause Knee Pain

If you are like the other millions of people with vein problems, you might already know that poor vein health can cause aches and pains. This is especially true for people with varicose veins in their lower legs. You might also have knee pain and wonder if your vein problems are causing your knee pain.

As it turns out, your vein problems may indeed be the source of your sore knee.

How Arthritis Medication Affect Your Heart

On top of the inflammation from arthritis, certain arthritis medications can also contribute to heart risks, says Martha Gulati, MD, a cardiologist in Phoenix, Arizona.

Corticosteroids like prednisone which are often used to tamp down arthritis flares can raise cholesterol and make insulin less sensitive, both of which contribute to cardiovascular risk. Thats part of the reason rheumatologists try not to keep patients on steroids on a long-term basis.

Whats more, relying on OTC nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen for pain relief can increase risk of cardiovascular problems like blood clots and heart failure, according to a 2015 analysis by the FDA.

Thankfully, sticking with doctor-recommended biologics and disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs could not only ease your arthritis symptoms, but also protect your heart. Easing the inflammation thats causing arthritis symptoms has the very important bonus of protecting your ticker.

We should treat rheumatoid arthritis very effectively and very aggressively because that seems to reduce the risk of heart disease, says Dr. Loupasakis.

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Know The Risk Factors

The same risk factors that can damage your heart can damage your legs: Diabetes, high levels of bad cholesterol and high blood pressure can all lead to the development of PAD.

If you have been diagnosed with any of these conditions, be diligent about taking medications. These include statins and cholesterol-lowering medications, which can help prevent blockages and are often an early step in treating PAD.

Another key to preventing PAD: Don’t smoke.

“Smoking is a principal risk factor for many types of vascular disease, especially PAD,” adds Lee. “My first advice to patients is, ‘If you smoke, quit.'”

Less Likely To Be A Heart Attack

ortho, Author at

Sensation of pain, or of pressure, tightness, squeezing, or burning

Sharp or knifelike pain brought on by breathing or coughing

Gradual onset of pain over the course of a few minutes

Sudden stabbing pain that lasts only a few seconds

Pain in diffuse area, including a constant pain in middle of chest

Pain clearly on one side of the body or the other

Pain that extends to the left arm, neck, jaw, or back

Pain that is localized to one small spot

Pain or pressure accompanied by other signs, such as difficulty breathing, a cold sweat, or sudden nausea

Pain that lasts for many hours or days without any other symptoms

Pain or pressure that appears during or after physical exertion or emotional stress or while you are at rest

Pain reproduced by pressing on the chest or with body motion

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Belching Caused By Blocked Heart Arteries

An angiogram revealed 50 percent narrowing of two major coronary arteries.

A third major artery and its branch had 98 percent blockage.

Treatment was bypass surgery, statins and aspirin.

The burping disappeared after this treatment.

The only explanation for the cause of belching in this patient was angina pectoris, notes the Journal.

The paper points out that the symptoms of belching and gas were related only to physical activity and emotional stress a strong suggestion of a heart problem.

Though its not difficult to locate medical literature describing the symptom pairing of burping AND chest pain originating from a cardiac disease, the literature on burping as the ONLY symptom of heart disease is very scant.

Why would heart disease cause burping at all?

The papers author speculates involvement of the vagus nerve, which passes through the chest.

A marked vagal stimulation, that is associated with a shortage of oxygen to the heart, can cause gastric upset leading to formation of gas making one burp.

Dr. Steens clinical expertise includes angioplasty, chest pain, coronary artery disease, heart attack, high blood pressure, valve disease, and vascular disease and intervention.
Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. Shes also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.

Get A Team Of Doctors Behind You

You probably already have an ongoing relationship with your rheumatologist and primary care practitioner, but you might want to add a cardiologist to your health care team. Rheumatologists are well aware of the heart risks their patients have, but they might not be up to date on the latest cardiovascular advice, including advanced screening tests or blood tests.

Some dont feel equipped to inform their patients they need partners, says Dr. Gulati. Ask your doctor to recommend a cardiologist who can give you a baseline assessment and talk to you about your heart disease risks.

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Shoulder Pain Could Be A Warning For Heart Disease Risk Factors

Heart disease risk factors, not occupation, were linked to shoulder pain.

What does a sore shoulder have to do with cardiovascular health? Quite a bit actually, according to researchers from the University of Utah School of Medicine.

In a recent study, the team examined the connection between shoulder pain, including joint pain and rotator cuff injury, and heart disease. Past studies have connected heart disease with other conditions, like carpal tunnel, tennis elbow, Achilles tendinitis, and all musculoskeletal disorders.

If someone has rotator cuff problems, it could be a sign that there is something else going on. They may need to manage risk factors for heart disease, lead author, Kurt Hegmann, MD, MPH, professor of Family and Preventive Medicine, said in a news release.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention revealed that 47% of Americans have at least one of the three leading heart disease risk factorshigh blood pressure, high cholesterol, and smoking. Hegmann and colleagues looked at these components as well as diabetes.

The most frequently reported cause of shoulder pain is repeated physical stresswhich can be attributed to jobs, in some cases. However, heart disease risk factors could be even more important when looking at shoulder pain.

Taking these results a step further, the team found that the more risk factors someone had, the more likely they were to have shoulder pain.

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What To Do If You Are Experiencing Joint Pain

Can Your Back Be Causing Your Knee Pain? — Dr Mandell

If you are experiencing pain in your knees, hips or other jointswhether or not you have had COVID-19talk to your doctor. If your doctor determines that you have infectious arthritis, they might prescribe medications or suggest having joint fluid drained, Dr. Siddiqi says.

  • Applying ice and heat and resting
  • Physical therapy

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What The Doctor Does

Doctors first ask questions about the person’s symptoms and medical history. Then they do a physical examination. What doctors find during the history and physical examination often suggests a cause for joint pain and guides the tests that may need to be done .

Doctors ask about pain severity, onset , how symptoms vary over time, and what increases or decreases pain . They ask about joint stiffness and swelling, previously diagnosed joint disorders, and risk of exposure to sexually transmitted diseases and Lyme disease.

Doctors then do a complete physical examination. They check all joints for swelling, redness, warmth, tenderness, and noises that are made when the joints are moved . The joints are moved through their full range of motion, first by the person without assistance and then by the doctor . This examination helps determine which structure is causing the pain and if inflammation is present. They also check the eyes, mouth, nose, and genital area for sores or other signs of inflammation. The skin is examined for rashes. Lymph nodes are felt and the lungs and heart examined. Doctors usually test function of the nervous system so that they can detect disorders of the muscles or nerves.

The following tests are the most important overall:

  • Tests of joint fluid

  • Blood tests for autoantibodies

  • Erythrocyte sedimentation rate and C-reactive protein

What Is Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis, or RA, is an autoimmune and inflammatory disease, which means that your immune system attacks healthy cells in your body by mistake, causing inflammation in the affected parts of the body.

RA mainly attacks the joints, usually many joints at once. RA commonly affects joints in the hands, wrists, and knees. In a joint with RA, the lining of the joint becomes inflamed, causing damage to joint tissue. This tissue damage can cause long-lasting or chronic pain, unsteadiness , and deformity .

RA can also affect other tissues throughout the body and cause problems in organs such as the lungs, heart, and eyes.

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Heart Attack Or Heart Disease

Chest pain is far from the only potential symptom of a heart attack. In some cases, the cardiovascular event triggers shoulder pain as a result of the brain getting too little oxygen. In addition, when you have an autoimmune disease that affects your joints, such as rheumatoid arthritis, related inflammation may raise your risk for heart disease. So its possible that your symptoms involve joint problems as well as heart-related issues.

Inflammatory Causes Of Chest Pain

Surprising Causes of Joint Pain

Tissues in the chest cavity can become inflamed due to injury, infection, or autoimmune conditions, in which the body’s immune cells attack its own tissues. Common inflammatory causes of chest pain include the following:

Costochondritis. This condition, an inflammation in the chest wall between the ribs and the breastbone, can trigger a stabbing, aching pain that’s often mistaken for a heart attack. Costochondritis is commonly caused by trauma or overuse injuries, often during contact sports, or it may accompany arthritis.

Pericarditis is an inflammation of the pericardium, a protective, double-layered sac surrounding the heart. It has many different possible causes, including a virus or other infection, certain illnesses, an injury to the chest, radiation therapy for cancer, or a reaction to medications. The classic symptom of pericarditis is a sharp, stabbing pain in the center or left side of the chest that worsens when you take a deep breath or lie down. The pain results from the irritated layers of the sac rubbing together.

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Nausea Indigestion Heartburn Or Stomach Pain

Some people have these symptoms during a heart attack. They may even vomit, Chambers says.

Women are more likely to report this type of symptom than men are.

Of course, you can have an upset stomach for many reasons that have nothing to do with your heart. It could just be something you ate, after all. But you need to be aware that it can also happen during a heart attack.

So if you feel this way and youâre at risk for heart problems, let a doctor find out whatâs going on, especially if you also have any of the other symptoms on this list.

Osteoarthritis And Your Heart

Having OA may increase your risk for cardiovascular disease. Heres what you can do to protect your heart.

Although joint damage, pain, and swelling are the hallmarks of osteoarthritis , joints arent the only part of the body this disease can affect. Research also shows that the heart may be at risk in people with degenerative joint disease.

People with OA are almost three times more likely to develop cardiovascular disease or heart failure than those without OA, studies show. The link is especially strong when arthritis is in certain joints, such as the knee and hip.

But just because you have OA doesnt mean you cant improve your heart health.

Whats Behind the OA-Heart Disease Link?


Although OA is not traditionally considered an inflammatory disease, research is beginning to show that OA does involve inflammation. And long-term inflammation contributes to CVD.


Growing older makes you more likely to develop both diseases. Aging thickens and stiffens the arteries, which can lead to high blood pressure and heart damage. Joints degenerate from years of use and repeated small injuries. Unfortunately, age isnt reversible, but you can address the preventable risk factors below.

Too little exercise


Obesity can lead to both OA and CVD. Carrying excess body weight puts stress on both the joints and heart, which can cause damage over time. Fat cells also produce inflammatory chemicals that are harmful to joints, the heart, and blood vessels.

Stay active

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Causes Of Pain In Many Joints

In most cases, the cause of pain originating inside multiple joints is arthritis. Disorders that cause arthritis may differ from each other in certain tendencies, such as the following:

  • How many and which joints they usually involve

  • Whether the central part of the skeleton, such as the spine or pelvis, is typically involved

  • Whether arthritis is sudden or longstanding

Acute arthritis affecting multiple joints is most often due to

Chronic arthritis affecting multiple joints is most often due to

Some chronic inflammatory disorders can affect the spine as well as the limb joints . Some affect certain parts of the spine more frequently. For example, ankylosing spondylitis more commonly affects the lower part of the spine, whereas rheumatoid arthritis more typically affects the upper part of the spine in the neck.

The most common disorders outside the joints that cause pain around the joints are

Bursitis and tendinitis often result from injury, usually affecting only one joint. However, certain disorders cause bursitis or tendinitis in many joints.

When Chest Pains Are Serious

What Causes Knee Pain Symptoms

Unlike an achy knee or crabby lower back, chest pain isn’t something to shrug off until tomorrow. It also isn’t something to diagnose at home. Don’t play doctor go see one, fast, if you are worried about pain or discomfort in your chest, upper back, left arm, or jaw or suddenly faint or develop a cold sweat, nausea, or vomiting. Call 911 or your local emergency number to summon an emergency medical crew. It will whisk you to the hospital in a vehicle full of equipment that can start the diagnosis and keep you stable if your heart really is in trouble.

There are oh-so-many reasons to delay calling for help.

  • I’m too young .
  • I’m in great shape .
  • I have a family to take care of .
  • I don’t want to bother anyone .

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Evaluation Of Pain In Many Joints

In evaluating joint pain, doctors first try to decide whether joint pain is caused by a disorder of the joints or a serious bodywide illness. Serious bodywide disorders may need specific immediate treatment. The following information can help people decide when to see a doctor and know what to expect during the evaluation.

Describe Chest Pain To Your Doctor

Doctors use several pieces of information to determine who is, and who isn’t, having a heart attack. In addition to the description of your symptoms and your heart risk profile, doctors use the results of an electrocardiogram and a blood test called cardiac troponin. But sometimes these don’t immediately show abnormalities. So, what you describe to the doctor and your medical history are extremely important in determining the initial steps in your treatment.

Here are some things your doctors will want to know about what you are experiencing:

  • What is it that you are feeling ?

  • Where is the discomfort?

  • Has it gotten worse or stayed the same?

  • Is the feeling constant, or does it come and go?

  • Have you felt it before?

  • What were you doing before these feelings started?

Clear answers to these questions go a long way toward nailing down a diagnosis. A few seconds of recurrent stabbing pain is less likely to be a heart attack , while pain centered in the chest that spreads out to the left arm or jaw is more likely to be one.

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Can Covid Cause Pain In Your Knees Hips & Other Joints

COVID-19 is characterized by a variety of symptomssome common to respiratory illness and others altogether strange . Although some COVID-19 patients have complained of joint pain, new research has quantified the prevalence of the symptom and is beginning to reveal the causes behind it.

As more people are infected with the novel coronavirus and recover, more is known about the different ways it affects the human body, says Ahmed Siddiqi, D.O., an adult reconstruction orthopedic surgeon at Jersey Shore University Medical Center and JFK University Medical Center.


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