Objective: Throughout the world and among different cultural groups, physical symptoms are the most common expressions of social problems and distress; chest pain is one of the most widely seen, medically unexplained physical symptoms. Most of the time, chest pain cases in which an organic etiology cannot be determined over time and in those presenting with atypical features should be evaluated as a component or an accompanying symptom of various specific psychiatric disorders, primarily such as panic disorder and depression. The aim of this study was to determine the psychiatric comorbidity rate in patients with chest pain without a cardiac etiology.
Method: Seventy patients admitted to the cardiology clinic with a complaint of chest pain but without any detectable cardiac etiology were included in the study. All patients were evaluated using a Sociodemographic Data Collection Form and Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV.
Results: Panic disorder was diagnosed in 47.1% of the non-cardiac chest pain group, depressive disorders in 21.4%, generalized anxiety disorder in 5.7%, anxiety disorders not otherwise specified in 5.7%, obsessive compulsive disorder in 5.7%, and undifferentiated somatoform disorder in 2.9%. Two psychiatric diagnoses were established in 12.9% of the patients and no psychiatric diagnosis in 24.3%.
Conclusion: Psychiatric disorder rates are quite high in patients with chest pain that cannot be explained cardiologically. These results show the importance of psychiatric evaluations in patients with non-cardiac chest pain or unexplained chest pain (UCP). In addition, understanding the psychiatric symptom profile of these patients will make an important contribution to the treatment of non-cardiac chest pain.