Approach to the child with chest pain

Pediatr Clin North Am. 2010 Dec;57(6):1221-34. doi: 10.1016/j.pcl.2010.09.003.


Children frequently present to a pediatric office or emergency department with the complaint of chest pain. Between 0.3% and 0.6% of visits to a pediatric emergency department are for chest pain. Unlike adult patients with chest pain, most studies have shown that children with chest pain rarely have serious organic pathology. Infrequently, a child with chest pain will present with significant distress and require immediate resuscitation. Most children with chest pain are not in extremis, and for many, the pain is not acute in nature.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Chest Pain* / diagnosis
  • Chest Pain* / etiology
  • Chest Pain* / therapy
  • Child
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Diagnostic Imaging / methods
  • Electrocardiography
  • Emergency Service, Hospital*
  • Humans
  • Myocardial Ischemia / complications
  • Myocardial Ischemia / diagnosis*
  • Physical Examination / methods