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Sarcoidosis

Heart involvement?

06/22/2009

Question:

I have pulimonary and skin sarcodoisid but lately have been feeling a heaviness in my chest with periods of acute pain that makes in difficult to breath let alone do anything else.I call them twitches) This can lasts for up to a few hours. Also been having charley horses where even my fingers will get to where they hurt and can`t move them until it goes away but usually in the upper right leg. Could this be a sign of heart involvement?

Answer:

The signs and symptoms of sarcoidosis involving the heart can be different from one person to the next. The cause of chest pressure or pain upon exertion is more likely to represent blockage of one of the arteries supplying blood to the heart. Sarcoidosis of the heart can cause abnormal heart beats (faster or slower than normal) that may feel like a "fluttering" sensation and can be associated with dizziness or loss of consciousness (passing out).

Chest pain at rest can also occur with sarcoidosis involving the chest (not necessarily the heart). Finally, sarcoidosis of the heart can lead to "heart failure", which may cause accumulation of fluid in the body, which causes swelling of the legs and abdomen, or can cause shortness of breath.

Special tests are required to establish the diagnosis of sarcoidosis involving the heart. Because this is a complicated situation, you are advised to consult your physician for further evaluation.

For more information:

Go to the Sarcoidosis health topic, where you can:

Response by:

Elliott D Crouser, MD Elliott D Crouser, MD
Associate Professor of Pulmonary, Allergy, Critical Care & Sleep Medicine
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University