Potential location of pain from a heart attack
Human heart during an autopsy
A blockage of coronary arteries can lead to a heart attack
Computer-generated animation of a beating human heart
Gastroesophageal reflux disease is a common cause of chest pain in adults
The human heart is in the middle of the thorax, with its apex pointing to the left.
Heart being dissected showing right and left ventricles, from above
Frontal section showing papillary muscles attached to the tricuspid valve on the right and to the mitral valve on the left via chordae tendineae.
Layers of the heart wall, including visceral and parietal pericardium
The swirling pattern of myocardium helps the heart pump effectively
Arterial supply to the heart (red), with other areas labelled (blue).
Autonomic innervation of the heart
Development of the human heart during the first eight weeks (top) and the formation of the heart chambers (bottom). In this figure, the blue and red colors represent blood inflow and outflow (not venous and arterial blood). Initially, all venous blood flows from the tail/atria to the ventricles/head, a very different pattern from that of an adult.
Blood flow through the valves
The cardiac cycle as correlated to the ECG
The x-axis reflects time with a recording of the heart sounds. The y-axis represents pressure.
Transmission of a cardiac action potential through the heart's conduction system
Conduction system of the heart
The prepotential is due to a slow influx of sodium ions until the threshold is reached followed by a rapid depolarization and repolarization. The prepotential accounts for the membrane reaching threshold and initiates the spontaneous depolarization and contraction of the cell; there is no resting potential.
3D echocardiogram showing the mitral valve (right), tricuspid and mitral valves (top left) and aortic valve (top right).
The closure of the heart valves causes the heart sounds.
Cardiac cycle shown against ECG
Heart and its blood vessels, by Leonardo da Vinci, 15th century
Animated heart
Elize Ryd making a heart sign at a concert in 2018
The tube-like heart (green) of the mosquito Anopheles gambiae extends horizontally across the body, interlinked with the diamond-shaped wing muscles (also green) and surrounded by pericardial cells (red). Blue depicts cell nuclei.
Basic arthropod body structure – heart shown in red
The human heart viewed from the front
The human heart viewed from behind
The coronary circulation
The human heart viewed from the front and from behind
Frontal section of the human heart
An anatomical specimen of the heart
Heart illustration with circulatory system
Animated Heart 3d Model Rendered in Computer

It can be divided into heart-related and non-heart-related pain.

- Chest pain

Cardiovascular diseases frequently do not have symptoms or may cause chest pain or shortness of breath.

- Heart

7 related topics

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A myocardial infarction occurs when an atherosclerotic plaque slowly builds up in the inner lining of a coronary artery and then suddenly ruptures, causing catastrophic thrombus formation, totally occluding the artery and preventing blood flow downstream.

Myocardial infarction

A myocardial infarction occurs when an atherosclerotic plaque slowly builds up in the inner lining of a coronary artery and then suddenly ruptures, causing catastrophic thrombus formation, totally occluding the artery and preventing blood flow downstream.
Cross section showing anterior left ventricle wall infarction
Diagram showing the blood supply to the heart by the two major blood vessels, the left and right coronary arteries (labelled LCA and RCA). A myocardial infarction (2) has occurred with blockage of a branch of the left coronary artery (1).
A 12-lead ECG showing an inferior STEMI due to reduced perfusion through the right coronary artery. Elevation of the ST segment can be seen in leads II, III and aVF.
ECG : AMI with ST elevation in V2-4
Inserting a stent to widen the artery.

A myocardial infarction (MI), commonly known as a heart attack, occurs when blood flow decreases or stops to the coronary artery of the heart, causing damage to the heart muscle.

The most common symptom is chest pain or discomfort which may travel into the shoulder, arm, back, neck or jaw.

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Troponin

Complex of three regulatory proteins that are integral to muscle contraction in skeletal muscle and cardiac muscle, but not smooth muscle.

Complex of three regulatory proteins that are integral to muscle contraction in skeletal muscle and cardiac muscle, but not smooth muscle.

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Troponin activation. Troponin C (red) binds Ca2+, which stabilizes the activated state, where troponin I (yellow) is no longer bound to actin. Troponin T (blue) anchors the complex on tropomyosin.

Certain subtypes of troponin (cardiac I and T) are sensitive and specific indicators of damage to the heart muscle (myocardium).

They are measured in the blood to differentiate between unstable angina and myocardial infarction (heart attack) in people with chest pain or acute coronary syndrome.

An ECG showing pericarditis. Note the ST elevation in multiple leads with slight reciprocal ST depression in aVR.

Pericarditis

An ECG showing pericarditis. Note the ST elevation in multiple leads with slight reciprocal ST depression in aVR.
Figure A shows the location of the heart and a normal heart and pericardium (the sac surrounding the heart). The inset image is an enlarged cross-section of the pericardium that shows its two layers of tissue and the fluid between the layers. Figure B shows the heart with pericarditis. The inset image is an enlarged cross-section that shows the inflamed and thickened layers of the pericardium.
Diffuse ST elevation in a young male due to myocarditis / pericarditis
An ECG showing pericarditis. Note the ST elevation in multiple leads with slight reciprocal ST depression in aVR.
Ultrasounds showing a pericardial effusion in someone with pericarditis
A pericardial effusion as seen on CXR in someone with pericarditis

Pericarditis is inflammation of the pericardium, the fibrous sac surrounding the heart.

Symptoms typically include sudden onset of sharp chest pain, which may also be felt in the shoulders, neck, or back.

Illustration depicting atherosclerosis in a coronary artery

Coronary artery disease

Coronary artery disease (CAD), also called coronary heart disease (CHD), ischemic heart disease (IHD), myocardial ischemia, or simply heart disease, involves the reduction of blood flow to the heart muscle due to build-up of atherosclerotic plaque in the arteries of the heart.

Coronary artery disease (CAD), also called coronary heart disease (CHD), ischemic heart disease (IHD), myocardial ischemia, or simply heart disease, involves the reduction of blood flow to the heart muscle due to build-up of atherosclerotic plaque in the arteries of the heart.

Illustration depicting atherosclerosis in a coronary artery
Clogged artery
Micrograph of a coronary artery with the most common form of coronary artery disease (atherosclerosis) and marked luminal narrowing. Masson's trichrome.
Illustration depicting coronary artery disease
Coronary angiogram of a man
Coronary angiogram of a woman
Deaths due to ischaemic heart disease per million persons in 2012

A common symptom is chest pain or discomfort which may travel into the shoulder, arm, back, neck, or jaw.

The most common symptom is chest pain or discomfort that occurs regularly with activity, after eating, or at other predictable times; this phenomenon is termed stable angina and is associated with narrowing of the arteries of the heart.

The digestive tract, with the esophagus marked in red

Esophagus

Organ in vertebrates through which food passes, aided by peristaltic contractions, from the pharynx to the stomach.

Organ in vertebrates through which food passes, aided by peristaltic contractions, from the pharynx to the stomach.

The digestive tract, with the esophagus marked in red
The esophagus is constricted in three places.
A mass seen during an endoscopy and an ultrasound of the mass conducted during the endoscopy session.

The esophagus is a fibromuscular tube, about 25 cm long in adults, that travels behind the trachea and heart, passes through the diaphragm, and empties into the uppermost region of the stomach.

Diseases may cause difficulty swallowing (dysphagia), painful swallowing (odynophagia), chest pain, or cause no symptoms at all.

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy

An ECG showing HOCM
Pressure tracings demonstrating the Brockenbrough–Braunwald–Morrow sign AO = Descending aorta; LV = Left ventricle; ECG = Electrocardiogram. After the third QRS complex, the ventricle has more time to fill. Since there is more time to fill, the left ventricle will have more volume at the end of diastole (increased preload). Due to the Frank–Starling law of the heart, the contraction of the left ventricle (and pressure generated by the left ventricle) will be greater on the subsequent beat (beat #4 in this picture). Because of the dynamic nature of the outflow obstruction in HCM, the obstruction increases more than the left ventricular pressure increase. This causes a fall in the aortic pressure as the left ventricular pressure rises (seen as the yellow shaded area in the picture).
Echocardiography of hypertrophic-obstructive cardiomyopathy (HOCM) in a cat.
Saddle thrombus in the feline aorta. 1 opened Aorta with thrombus, 2 A. iliaca externa, 3 common trunk for both Aa. iliacae internae, 4 A. circumflexa ilium profunda, 5 A. mesenterica caudalis, 6 Colon descendens.

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM, or HOCM when obstructive) is a condition in which the heart becomes thickened without an obvious cause.

It may also result in chest pain or fainting.

X-ray image of the chest showing the internal anatomy of the rib cage, lungs and heart as well as the inferior thoracic border–made up of the diaphragm.

Thorax

Part of the anatomy of humans, mammals, and other tetrapod animals located between the neck and the abdomen.

Part of the anatomy of humans, mammals, and other tetrapod animals located between the neck and the abdomen.

X-ray image of the chest showing the internal anatomy of the rib cage, lungs and heart as well as the inferior thoracic border–made up of the diaphragm.
An X-ray of a human chest area, with some structures labeled
High-resolution computed tomographs of a normal thorax, taken in the axial, coronal and sagittal planes, respectively. This type of investigation can be used for detecting both acute and chronic changes in the lung parenchyma.
Volume rendering of a high resolution computed tomography of the thorax. The anterior thoracic wall, the airways and the pulmonary vessels anterior to the root of the lung have been digitally removed in order to visualize the different levels of the pulmonary circulation.
Thorax. Anterior view.
Thorax. Anterior view.
Clearly visible thorax of an artistic gymnast.

It contains organs including the heart, lungs, and thymus gland, as well as muscles and various other internal structures.

Many diseases may affect the chest, and one of the most common symptoms is chest pain.