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2118271 tn?1337466704

Adrenal surge in chest?

Has anyone every dealt with an adrenaline surge like feeling in the center of your chest?  I *think* it's anxiety, but has anyone heard of it being something else?

I usually get it at night just as I'm about to nod off, but lately I will get it during the day.  It's extremely scary and very intense, and wonder if I'm dieing!!!!!!  It feels like it's my heart.  Like cortisol or something is surging through.  I don't even have thoughts of gloom or anything.  those usually come later when i have a chance to think I start thinking I'm dieing and that my heart won't be able to take it much longer.

I've had the Catecholamines pee test, so its not a tumor on the adrenals.  My CBC is normal as well.

Please help!  
8 Responses
757137 tn?1347200053
You might ask your doctor to order a saliva test. Samples are taken throughout the day that measure cortisol. Normally cortisol starts high in the morning and falls during the day. In some cases it rises instead of falling and causes panic attacks.

This happened to me. I was told to take Xanax (a similar drug) on an as needed basis to abort an attack. The dosage was very low and worked very well. If you do not have an addictive personality, and it seems to me that you don't, there is no danger to you if you remember not to take the drug on a regular schedule.
Avatar universal
Hi, I just explained this very same thing to my doctor today.  It's like a feeling of when you are about to get into a car accident, that's the best way I can explain it but I feel like I have an surge of adreneline all the time and feel my heart is going to give out because it beats so hard.  The doctor thinks its anxiety and gave me some meds.  
757137 tn?1347200053
You are getting a rush of adrenaline (from the adrenal gland) which is causing a panic attack. Speak to your doctor. Sometimes low-dose Xanax is taken when the person feels an attack coming on. That works very well.
2118271 tn?1337466704
Thank you both for the insight.  I have been prescribed Lorazapam in the past for anxiety related issues.  I am very very reluctant to take anything though because-well I'm anxious about it (go figure)!   I used to take medicine years ago for bipolar disorder, but was miraculously cured of that.  I guess it has resurfaced itself as anxiety.  I am trying to be as holistic as possible, although my therapist advised me to take my Lorazepam to "get out of this cycle."  I did take it, because I trust her very much and she doesn't jump to pharmaceuticals right away.  I must have been quite a mess today if she told me to take some Lorazapam!

Any suggestions on holistic ideas?  I am trying L-theanine which seems to work during the day but cannot sway these adrenaline surges at night.
Avatar universal
Sounds like panic/anxiety attacks to me, I get that same surge and I jump off the couch and think I am having a heart attack and going to die. Get some xanax, that helps calm me down and stop the attack.
Avatar universal
I've already posted on similar question, copy-pasted:

Try these:

1) Do not eat anything 5-6 hours before going to bed, only drink pure water if you want
2) Experiment with your diet, exclude a group of products and see how it works for you. I have felt a lot better without milk and it's derivatives
3) Eat healthy, exclude caffeine and junk food

The most important thing is number 1.


I've visited numerous docs, with no effect at all - they all told me it is stress related thing.
I was trying to find a pattern myself, it took me two years and a lot of trouble to figure it out. One day I took a huge milk protein shake right before going to bed, and powerful rushes & sleepless night followed.
After excluding milk and not eating 5-6 hours before going to bed I am fine, no rushes.

I would also add, rushes during the day are likely to happen because you are exhausted of sleepless nights, at least for me it was the case.


Hope it will help
Avatar universal
I would recommend ANYONE having these type of symptoms to look into Adrenal Fatigue Syndrome...after you have exhausted all other avenues with your doctor(s) & have had all the recommended tests to rule out other serious diagnoses. My list of symptoms was a match at about 98%. My symptoms have decreased a lot over the past 6 wks since going to DrLam.com & www.smart-publications.com/adrenal-fatigue-questionnaire/ and reading about this syndrome & changing my diet COMPLETELY. I have removed gluten, dairy, sugar, regular salt, all fruit juices & caffeine, beef & pork. I have started making & drinking chicken bone broth daily. I am not great, but am much better than I was 6 weeks ago. Take the tests. I tested with advanced stage adrenal fatigue & my doctors said I "am perfectly healthy". NO, I'M NOT! Two trips to the ER with all the heart, kidney, liver  & thyroid bloodwork showing "normal". I spent the night in the chest pain unit followed by normal EKGs, an echo of my heart & stress test. Tried antidepressant/anxiety med, with bad dreams & disturbing thoughts which is uncharacteristic of me & weaned off. Cannot take ANY supplements at all without some form of negative response. If this condition gets worse & puts you in advanced & severe stages, it can become debilitating & life threatening. I strongly recommend checking into this if you've already exhausted other resources & feel as frustrated, hopeless & afraid as I did.
2 Comments
Susan this post is old but i was wondering if you ever got rid of these adrenaline type rushes?  I've had them for two years. First year and a half was horrific.  They have calmed down some but I would love to rid of them all together. My email is ***@**** if you can answer me there.
You can't post an email address on the open forums, and that's a good thing -- it's not something you want everyone to have, right?  But you can send a private message to the person and see if they're still around and respond.  To do that, click on their name and that'll take you to their profile page, which has a place to send private messages.  But there are a lot of posts over the years about adrenaline surges and they're almost always not adrenaline surges.  Almost nobody ever has a doctor diagnose adrenaline surges.  Now, you do get them when you get an anxiety attack -- that's a major attack and it's connected to cortisol output.  But feeling like you're having one isn't the same as having one.  If you make a new post and fully describe what you're going through, you might get more answers.  All the best.  
Avatar universal
I got chest rush feelings from being hypoglycemic. I ate a whole watermelon, and about 10 minutes after getting hungry about 4 hours later, started getting these rush feelings and measured by BP, 52, typically signaling hypoglycemia, so I ate half a pineapple and everything is back to normal. So, I advise you to check your blood sugar. You might have low blood sugar from not eating enough (or eating too much...) or excessive exercise and not eating enough.
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