Patient Comments: Panic Attacks - Symptoms & Signs


What symptoms and signs do you experience with panic attacks? Submit Your Comment

Comment from: Bill, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: April 10

Helping a neighbor in his shed which was heated by a wood stove I leaned against a stack of firewood and felt a pain like getting a shot on my lower back where my flannel shirt had hiked up and the skin had come in contact with the woodpile. I reached back and swatted the area and when I looked down at my hand there was about a half of a black widow spider squashed on the back of my hand. 'Don't panic' I thought and for some reason I tried to play it down. Twenty minutes later I felt a need to escape and as though I could feel the blood flowing through my armpit, and started to think this was not going to be simple. I returned home, felt mild general malaise, the site of the bite changed color and swelled to about the size of a golf ball, and soreness set in. As the day ended and darkness set in I found myself sitting in a chair in a corner of the room scanning back and forth with my eyes with a general feeling of vigilance I had not experienced before. I sat up the night in that chair, only dozing for short periods of time and as the sun came up I fell asleep. When I awakened my lower back was in pain, I noticed a wet spot on my shirt tail and so looked with a hand mirror and saw the site of the bite swelled and oozing pus. I had been spider bit as a child and fell gravely ill but I read that such exposure can build a sort of immunity to the symptoms in future bites should they occur so I hoped for the best and cleaned the wound with peroxide and bandaged it. Days passed, I cleaned the wound daily and applied clean bandages after which time my day/night schedule returned to normal. I went to my doctor and he prescribed me a 10 day course of antibiotics during which time the swelling subsided and the weeping wound dried leaving a deep puncture scar but healed well. I will never forget how my automatic neurological routines were disrupted by this experience and I know that I was not acting as I had before the bite but perhaps that is par for the course when impacted by our neurologically toxic insect friends. I didn't mean to disturb her and after the fact remembered that my Boy Scout manual had taught me to be cautious around wood piles because that is black widow realm. Dang, if only I'd remembered that before leaning back that day; such is life.

Comment from: writingirl, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: September 14

I started to feel ill in May, stomach bloating, loss of appetite, gas that would not pass, narrowing of stools, and some bouts of constipation. I have had a colonoscopy that revealed a narrowing and a skin tag, but no biopsies were taken, since I was on Coumadin, but hadn't taken it for 10 days. Symptoms continued and an EGD was done, which showed acid reflux and a small hiatal hernia. I was put on Zantac for that and Amitiza for the irritable bowel syndrome. I tried gluten free foods and no big difference. My celiac disease was negative. So with all the food no-no’s, I am losing precious weight and am down to 121 and am 5 ft 8 inches. I can't afford to lose more. I have tried Ensure Plus but can only drink it once a day due to the content of vitamin K which affects my INR (international normalized ratio).

Comment from: Natalie, 25-34 Female (Caregiver) Published: January 05

When I was a very healthy 42 year old I needed some big dental fillings done and, terrified, I asked if there was anything to relax me. I was offered the green whistle containing an analgesic called methoxyflurane which worked well on the first occasion. I returned to the dentist three weeks later to have more fillings done and accepted relaxation treatment with the green whistle again. I began feeling very unwell over the next 12 hours. My health quickly deteriorated and I presented at emergency with acute and severe liver and kidney failure and was very lucky to survive and receive a liver transplant within 48 hours. Liver serum was sent from here in Perth, Western Australia to Maryland University in the US and re-exposure to methoxyflurane was determined to be the cause.

Comment from: my experience, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: January 14

I am a 50 years old businessman. When I was 36 years old, one night I suddenly felt like I may die immediately and lost my mental control with fear and grief. The next day I was taken to the hospital, and the diagnostic report says I am suffering with panic/phobia disorder. The doctor prescribed me some medicine (Trika & Diamine Plus). After that I can’t go alone anywhere, I can’t even stay at home alone. I thought my life is at an ending stage. Then I started meditation with art of thinking therapy regularly even sometimes middle at night. I have started taking Trika only in morning and told myself that everybody has to die one day or other. Now I am almost ok.

Comment from: Going crazy, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: October 31

I am 42 years old and I am new to panic attacks. For me it starts with dizzy spells then I develop chest and stomach pains. I have twice gone to hospital thinking I was having a heart attack but my heart is fine, I felt so ashamed but they took good care of me and I felt better by the end of the day. My doctor gave me metoprolol to help with the racing heart and it works well but it does not stop panic attacks so I changed doctors, but she suggested not to take medicine and work out my own way of coping. Well I don't know how to cope so now I am stuck at home every day too scared to drive or even go to the shop; this is not how I want to live but will do my best.

Comment from: David , 45-54 Female (Caregiver) Published: June 01

I was just diagnosed with emphysema and I'm just going to keep on exercising and I stopped smoking.

Comment from: Peeinpool, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: August 15

I am a 60 year old male with 2 week old diagnosis of stage IV cancer, primary in the lung (4.3 cm), and secondaries in brain and liver. I need aggressive and immediate treatment that will attack the cancer and kill the cells or the cells destruct themselves. I do not want to proceed in wrong direction, time is of the essence.


Panic attacks are repeated attacks of fear that can last for several minutes. See Answer
Comment from: Jacqui, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: September 22

I had blood tests last week and was told my liver function was over 200. I am not sure what this means. More blood tests tomorrow and have to arrange a scan on Friday.

Comment from: Vickie, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: October 15

I started having panic attacks a year ago. I went to the Emergency Room because for a few days my heart was pounding and I felt lightheaded. The doctor did blood work and found I have an underactive thyroid. Then I started to feel like I was having a heart attack and thought about dying and I would get real nervous. Went to the Emergency Room one day while working and was told I have been having panic attacks. Now a year later after taking Wellbutrin and Celexa along with Synthroid, every once in a while I get the heart pounding and heavy breathing.

Comment from: 19-24 Female Published: August 12

I had anxiety attacks since I was 14. When it started, I didn't know what was going on with me and I was really scared. I was young and I thought that something was wrong with me. I've seen many doctors with my mom to be diagnosed but none of them helped me figure out that it was anxiety attacks. Because of my blurred vision, I thought I was going blind and I've seen an eyes specialist. I soon became hypochondriac. I have symptoms like shaking, dizziness, pressure in my chest, heart pounding, sensation of unreal, crying, huge fear of dying or passing out. I thought that each of my symptoms were because of a health problem and that no doctors could diagnose it because it was a rare illness. I realized all by myself what my problem when I knew that those symptoms wouldn't make me die. I'm now 19 and it started again lately because of stress. I feel like my physical symptoms of my anxiety are always growing and that I have new ones every time a I do an attack. My fear those days is having a stroke. I always check if my face is alright and if I'm not paralyzed. It annoys me so much but the idea of having a health problem just won't go out of my head. I know it's irrational, but I'm too scared to let it go. I know that I'm not the only one, and I have to get myself together.

Comment from: nutsnputs, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: May 09

I`m 54 years old. This last winter I began having these attacks. I had shortness of breath, a feeling that if I were to be still or lay down that I would surely die, severe claustrophobic feelings, and a feeling like you get when you start the first fall on a rollercoaster... only it would last for hours and not go away. At first I thought they were respiratory, induced from the cold weather, mold exposure, or perhaps even CO2 induced. When all of these were ruled out, I thought that I must simply be losing my mind. Now I think they may be caused from extended stress. I am still in the diagnostic stage. I`ve been prescribed trazodone for now, we`ll see how it works.

Comment from: angela, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 04

The other day, I took one Wellbutrin SR in the morning and that night, I had panic attack. I did not know what to do, I thought I was dying! It turns out that it subsided after 30 minutes. Luckily, I had some Ativan. That helped me a lot and helped me to sleep. The next day, I had another, except with this one, I decided to go the emergency room. There, they did an EKG, which turned out normal. They listened to my heart, took my blood pressure and heart rate, and everything was fine there also. When the doctor listened to my heart, he said it was beating like it should. It turned out I was suffering from a mild panic attack so they gave me an Ativan, and that settled me down in a few minutes. They prescribed me Atarax for the panic and another doctor put back on Zoloft! No more Wellbutrin SR for me.

Comment from: Bonita, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: May 31

I am 43 and have had panic attacks since I was 18. I have the stomach ache attacks, feelings of weakness, heart palpitations, and twinges of pain in my chest, feelings of a load of bricks on my chest, the feelings of not being able to swallow and fear of dying. Sometimes I even fear living like this the rest of my life. This all leads to depression.

Comment from: yellowrose, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: May 14

Starting at age 15, my panic attacks would include nausea, severe shivering, an intense unexplained need to "escape" and a feeling that my throat was closing shut. I have had to leave restaurants, church services, movie theaters, and theme parks. I am now age 45 and have not had a really bad p.a. in 13 years. My dr. put me on the lowest dose of clonazapem available and I can sense an attack building. I find if I fight it or try to suppress panic, the attack only builds and lasts longer. I do not mind taking medication. It took a couple tries to find one that worked well and didn't leave me groggy. A person would certainly treat diabetes by taking a daily med. I have a panic disorder but I no longer feel debilitated by it.

Comment from: secret, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: March 21

With panic attacks. I experience head tensions, my whole body starts to shake like I’m having the chills, it gets tense to where it gets harder for me to breathe, like a feeling of being squeezed. I get teary, and my hands start to form a fist like it’s locked up. I get a bit dizzy but am aware of what’s happening to me. That's why I always store some meds in my car and at home. Because I experienced it while I was driving and I didn’t have my pills on me which was scary.


What Are Phobias? Agoraphobia, Social Anxiety Disorder, Other Fears See Slideshow
Comment from: masmit, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: March 07

I’m 36 and just started to have anxiety attacks. I’ve learned to control the really bad symptoms like racing heart and hyperventilating but I can’t stop the fear that I’m going to die. I’m always checking my pulse to see if it’s racing or checking the arteries in my neck to see if they are bulging. I’ve stopped watching any medical shows on t.v. I always give myself whatever disease they talk about. I tell myself it’s in my head but I can’t stop the fear of dyeing. My sister died of a sudden heart attack last year and that set the attacks into overdrive. I’m now taking zyprexa after trying all the usual meds and it seems to help. One of my major fears is taking a med that will kill me so it was very hard to get help. I hope someone can get relief where I couldn’t.

Comment from: Marie, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 24

My first panic attack was 2 weeks ago, I may have had them before, but I have only recently learned to id them. Just waking up one Sunday, my head hurt like if it was being pounded on with a concrete block, was dizzy, numbness the entire left side of my body, thought I was having a stroke, called 911, went to ER. EKG and blood work was fine. The next couple of weeks, continued to feel the tremors in the chest, dizziness and headaches. Last Sunday, just arrived at a theme park when sudden strong dizziness, shortness of breath, headache took over, on the way to the first aid office, arms and legs went numb, tingling, head was pounding, chest pain, heart beat so hard, very dizzy. BP 150/110, heart rate 128. Felt I was having a heart attack and feared dying. Thought of my kids and all that's emotional would increase shortness of breath and hyperventilation. Went to ER again, attack lasted about 3 hours, all extremities went numb and couldn't move, facial cramps, sever body trembling. Again, thought it was a heart attack. This time I was hospitalized, doctors ran all cardio, blood tests, mri's, mra's: All came out normal. No diagnosis from doctors. The paramedic on the ambulance suggested I was having a P.A. Did research, apparently I now suffer from P.A. I can now tell when an attack is about to happen-the trembling in my chest, dizziness and sudden headache. The attacks are crippling-mentally and emotionally and physically. Xanax helps, also taking deep long breaths, recognizing the symptoms, then mentally over power them so they don't over power you. Good luck to all P.A. sufferers. There are many out there, just don't let this evil thing get the best of you.

Comment from: Goldie, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: February 10

I am 34 and started suffering from panic attacks 8 years ago. My father also suffers from anxiety since as far as I can remember. Have been off and on meds like Paxil. They seemed to help but had to discontinue in pregnancy. Now, my anxiety/panic is totally out of control. I have attacks during the day and also they wake me up at night and then I can't fall back asleep for hours. My symptoms are very severe they include all textbook symptoms and last for hours. I try to cope but it really does seem to be controlling my life. I eat right, exercise, I don't drink or smoke and I am of normal weight, but still nothing helps me. I think I am going to call my Dr. and go back on the meds, even though I hate to have to take any sort of medication.

Comment from: geb, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 08

I had my first panic attack when I was 15, after my sister died. Then I went for about five years without having one. Then I started having them again. I am now 48. I am so sick of these attacks. I do not like taking meds. I do think that keeping busy and exercise works. But I still have problems with driving far away or going on vacations. My children say I will only travel within my bubble. I feel like an idiot. I need to know where the Fire departments are when I’m going anywhere just so I know if I have a bad enough panic attack I can get help if I can’t breathe. And to me that’s crazy, but it’s how I feel. I would love to be normal.

Comment from: christine, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: January 20

I was sexually abused as a child and not until adulthood did I start having panic attacks. I believe it has to do with the abuse, but I'm not positive. I'm also going through menopause and I've heard that women sometimes have panic attacks at this stage of life. I was taking valium at night to sleep, but I am now on alprazolam. I took the first one last night, because I had a panic attack out of nowhere. I usually get lightheaded and feel like I can't concentrate on the person who is talking to me. It feels like an out of body experience. And, then, my heart starts racing, like it's going to jump out of my chest. Usually, if I take deep breaths and lie down, I feel better within about 10 minutes. Last night was the first time I took Alprazolam. I don't really like it because I woke up this morning feeling drowsy and super hungry. So frustrated!

Comment from: lisa moore, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: January 20

I have just started experiencing panic attacks. I have pounding chest pain, tingling, and numbness throughout my entire body. My head and body gets all warm. I also experience the feeling that I’m going to pass out. I try not to think of having the panic attack but I start thinking of it beyond my control and then it triggers the panic attack. My doctor prescribed me 2mg Xanax which I take 2 times a day and I also take tolonol which is 1mg once a day to slow my heart rate. I’m 34 years old and I have never experienced this before. It scares the crap out of me and I don’t know how to calm myself down. I have already been to the er and they put me on a heart monitor. Which spikes to 157 bpm and my bp was 134 over 103. I’m afraid I’m going to die all the time now because of these panic attacks. I also have a tumor on my pituitary gland and hypothyroidism.

Comment from: Michae, 35-44 Male Published: November 17

I have suffered anxiety on and off since the mid-1990’s most times I manage ok. Just recently I have suffered a spate of fast heart pounding along with creepy cold chills up and down arms with some hyperventilating. I had it checked and the hospital and docs found everything ok. My heart is fine. I found an article on simple steps to help panic attacks. Where1/ try to take some easy calm breathes easier said than done but when you feel came enough number2/ say out loud in your brain STOP. And reassure yourself that's it's panic that causing this and will pass in 2 to 3 minutes. By telling yourself to stop your interrupting the negative flow that something must be wrong with your heart or head. And then the adrenaline will also stop which causes the sensations.3/ use some coping words and sentence to replace negative. Like the panic or fear is causing my heart to pound it will be over in 2 to 3 minutes if I relax. It really works because over the last few weeks I was getting panic nearly every 30 minutes and with this simple technique I have reduced it down to maybe feeling a bit anxious a couple times. It takes practice and I am getting better. Don’t be afraid to talk to a practitioner like a psych as well. Any info and understanding can make your life feel much better.

Comment from: paula, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: November 15

I have suffered chronic anxiety since I was 17 when I had my first panic attack, sweaty cold hand feel like I can’t breathe, fear of passing out or my heart stopping constant check my pulse or look in mirror to see if my lips r blue feel numb, severe fear of death. It’s like at any second I’m going to die my thoughts are constant fear. I experience the most frightening feelings, as though it’s not bad enough I have this all day I’m now waking up in night I’m on lorazepam 1mg daily which after 15 years use does nothing. I am now 37 feel I have no life at all too scared to go out too scared to even talk always wanting constant reassurance nothing works, due to this condition ended up with so many ocd disorders, it’s a very cruel life in which a person has to live with little or no relief when all i want is what a lot of people take for granted a little e bit of life and to smile once in a while instead of living in constant fear of death.

Comment from: Discouraged, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: September 30

My panic attacks started when I was 27, I am now 46. T had them for 10 years before being diagnosed. I was put on several medications (bu-spar, Zoloft, Xanax Ativan ) I was so afraid to take any of them (afraid of side effects) I finally took Paxil and it worked. I was on it for 5 years OR SO then weaned myself off. I was good for about 5 more years, now they are back. My symptoms are numbness in my chest and arms, pounding racing heart, skipping beats, dry mouth. weakness, feeling like I am losing my mind, don't want to be alone. I am so focused on every pain and twitch in my body and I think they are all going to kill me. I'm shaky; weak you name it i got it. Now I’m back on Paxil and then just worry if it is a mis-diagnosis. It's so hard on your family because they don't know how to help. I wouldn't wish this on anyone. It's no way to live your life.

Comment from: HeavyHitter, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: September 08

My symptoms differ from those described, in that they are brief, lasting just a moment. A sudden unpleasant memory will trigger a quick inhale and exhale, as if I were suddenly punched in the diaphragm. This only occurs when I am alone with my thoughts, never in the presence of others. A therapist described this experience as a panic attack, but I have never read about anything like it in any discussions about panic attacks.

Comment from: Eva, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: August 17

I am 28 and I had my very first panic attack today, I googled my symptoms: blurry vision, a horrendous, super intense headache; extreme fear of nothing concrete; difficulty for breathing; nausea; dizziness; vomit; plenty of sweat; feeling that nothing is real, or everything is different; fear of going crazy; a need to escape and that's how I found out this was a panic attack. It lasted like one hour! I hope this will never be repeated it is really scary.

Comment from: Xx.sufferingsilently, 13-18 Female (Patient) Published: July 29

I am a 17 year old girl. I have read these stories and it's hard. Reading about how there have been older people dealing with panic attacks too. I have been suffering from panic attack disorder since I was 6. 11 years of it, last June, just after I was raped and traumatized for life, my doctor finally agreed to put me on medication. I am on 75mg, but he won't put me up any higher, and I can't do this anymore! Usually, if I have a panic attack before I go to bed- I cry myself to sleep, because otherwise I don't feel that it's okay or that I'll be okay.

Comment from: lulu, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: June 20

My first panic attack was at the age of 35. One minute I was fine, the next minute I thought I was dying! I had extreme nausea, diarrhea, heart palpitations, and tingling down one side of my body. It felt as if ice was running through my veins, but I was hot and clammy to the touch. I was paralyzed by fear. I felt removed from my body (I wish!), detached, and scared to be left alone. During one attack, the chemical imbalance caused by my chronic hyperventilation caused me to have a seizure! Spectacular stuff! The body works in some weird ways. I have learned to listen to my body a lot more and slow down when it tells me! Medication keeps me on the straight and narrow, but there is a fine line between wellness and my “freakiness” as my family refers to my panic attacks.

Comment from: nischal, Female Published: May 02

I am a 21-year-old girl, and I have panic attacks. It started when I was 18 years old, and at that time, it was not so often. This year, since I am living alone, I have them more often. I have bad thoughts, mostly about death, that cloud my mind and I am unable to control them. I start shaking, lose control over my body, and I get chest pains. This also occurs in crowded places. I get so scared that I don’t know what to do.

Comment from: WJL772, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: February 25

Panic Attack, war against panic attack is what we should be spending our tax dollars. The amount of people suffers from this illness is so high that it is scary. I have had Panic Attacks for 10 years now. I don't know what started but I know I worry so much. I get afraid of dying. I think I am having a heart attack. I want to be in the bed laying down and believe it or not I will make sure the phone is next to me dialed 911 so I can redial instead of keying in the number again. I do not want to live my life like this. I want to be happy and worry free but it’s not easy. I can’t make long term plans. I want to buy a boat but then I think I don’t know if I will live that long, I am 38 years old. I went to the Doctor told them I thought I am having a heart attack they checked me wired me with all the pulse cables in my chest. Everything seems to be normal. Than I did realize he thought I am crazy, which is sometimes very embarrassing. There are times when it happens during at work or going to work but I will lie and tell them I have something very important to do so I can run home that's the only place I feel safe. I feel better when my wife is back home I think I feel safer knowing someone is there just in case. I don't know but one thing makes me feel much better is reading more from different people and what they go through or talking to someone who is going through the same thing. I am taking Paxil 40 mg but it seems like it really is not doing anything for me. I have read lots of positive feedback about XANAX. I wish everyone with this problem GOOD LUCK AND PA FREE, WORRY FREE FUTURE.

Comment from: Rita, 19-24 Female Published: February 23

I have been taking ranitidine for GERD for several years and would like to stop.

Comment from: iamhonestone, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: September 28

I am just hardnosed, think I can do anything, but can’t quit tobacco chewing. I got strong mind, but I can’t quit.

Comment from: nisha, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: November 08

When I get the panic attacks, I can't breathe properly, I feel like something is there in my neck and I can’t swallow. I have been suffering from this for 4 months and my treatment is going on.

Comment from: Kaneetra, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: June 07

I am 24, have had panic attacks since I was 18. I have the stomach ache attacks, feelings of weakness, heart palpitations, and twinges of pain in my chest, feelings of a load of bricks on my chest, the feelings of not being able to swallow and fear of dying. Sometimes I even fear living like this the rest of my life. This all leads to more depression. Ive seen doctors that just said speak with some one. Since the age of 13 my depression been between mild and high with my panic attacks still at a all times high. Can anyone suggest on what i can do because the worst it gets it effects my life and at work.

Comment from: Vince, 55-64 Male (Caregiver) Published: March 29

I started getting palpitations, dizziness, and a feeling of falling over while driving. I went to several doctors and psychiatrists, without help. The only thing that did seem to help was a panic attack therapist, lots of motivation, and determination to beat the sensations. The secret is to recognize the feelings as sensations, and sensations can't hurt you. Always see a doctor first to eliminate the chance of anything physically wrong with you.

Comment from: blue 2071, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: March 14

I am 41 and I have been having panic attacks as long as I can remember. I also work on aircraft and freak out when my job requires me to fly. I get into the plane and the panic attack hits me. I feel dizzy, I can’t tell if it’s real or a dream and I feel trapped. I also had a panic attack this morning and felt trapped about the cloudy day, not being able to see the blue sky. My panic attacks have been getting worse the last couple of months. My doctor put me on medication and it doesn’t seem to be working. I also have a fear of getting a brain aneurysm. I hate these panic attacks.

Comment from: Rubydoo, 13-18 Female (Patient) Published: October 15

I just had my first panic attack. It was the scariest thing ever. I was just sitting watching television and began to feel hot and a bit sweaty so I went to my room and I just felt dizzy like I was going to fall over. I thought I was just over reacting so I sat down but my breathing became really heavy so I went to see my mom and she just thought I was being a drama queen. Then I began to gasp for breaths and was sweating loads and I started shaking so my dad lay me down on the sofa. I just lay there for about an hour it really felt like I was in a dream and my hands and feet where tingling. My arms, hands and legs went stiff. About two hours later I feel okay just a bit shocked.

Comment from: MagPie, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: October 15

I am 45 years old and I think my panic attacks started about five years ago. The first one happened shortly after I had a head injury. A week later I was at a meeting at work and I had to run out to the ER because I felt I couldn't breathe and my heart was racing. I began to sweat and felt dizzy. I told the doctors that I was having a heart attack because I didn't know what a panic attack was. I have also had heart spasms without any other symptoms for many more years and this has been checked out without any diagnosis. My panic attacks are getting much worse and sometimes I am afraid to do anything. I stopped working nearly two years ago because of these symptoms, but I want to go back to work. I don't want to live like this at all.

Comment from: Anonymous, 13-18 Female (Patient) Published: September 07

I have had an anxiety disorder for the longest time. I've had it since I understood how to speak and what things meant. People might not believe me when I tell them this but it is true. Anxiety runs in my family. It's hereditary. When I was younger I hated leaving home without people that I actually knew. I would only be able to go places with close family members. If I didn't I would get a panic attack. There was a period of time when my anxiety stopped when I was about 12 years old. For a few months I would rarely get anxiety but then my anxiety became worse. I would get panic attacks every day. I would have shortness of breath, tiredness, I would even feel weak. When I get panic attacks, I feel like I am going to have to go to the Emergency Room and might die. But then I thought to myself, I have had anxiety for years now and not once have I ended up in the ER and I'm still alive right now. Then I felt so desperate to look online for possible solutions that would cure these panic attacks. I've tried breathing methods, therapy, and I am currently taking medication. I just started a few days ago. I hope it will help me. The reason I am typing this here is because I hope someone out there will read this that knows someone or is going through this right now and you are not alone.

Comment from: Trin, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: August 14

I'm 19 years old and a pre-med student. I just discovered a week ago that I've been having panic attacks because of all the negative thoughts I put in my head a day before an exam. Every time I push myself to study I end up getting all panicky and am not able to absorb anything I'm studying. During the exam, I get panicky as well. I feel like my skin is burning hot and get this tingling feeling between my fingers and toes. When someone would talk about school or exams, I would start to tear up because of fear. Now, I get scared to go to school and worry that I might not be able to study, ever. Sometimes I get this feeling of just wanting to escape instead of having to go to school. So glad to find this site and know that I'm not alone.

Comment from: Sippers, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: July 06

I too suffer from panic attacks. I started getting them three months ago. I get the chills, heart racing, pains in the chest arms and I also get burning in my body, like I have a bad sunburn. I went to the ER and the EKG and chest x-rays came back fine. They said I suffer from panic attacks. I don't smoke or drink. I have started eating better and cut back on the soda. I am now on Zoloft. I just started taking that and sought counseling.

Comment from: caroline, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: January 23

I am a 26 year old female and I recently started suffering from panic attacks after a miscarriage. I usually have the panic attacks at night. The symptoms are tingling down one side, having a hard time swallowing, and increased mucus that makes it feel like I am choking. Sometimes when I am having a bad one, I get stomach cramps and diarrhea. I have been prescribed propranolol, but it doesn't always work.

Comment from: aaaahhhhh, 13-18 Female (Patient) Published: September 08

I'm 16 years old, and only a junior in high school. I've been suffering anxiety/panic attacks for a little over a month now. It's one of the most horrible feelings in the world. I start to feel so scared and I start to think I'm dying. My body gets hot but in the inside it's cold. I get an unreal feeling like I'm not real and I'm just watching my body move from the inside. I can't live a normal life anymore, I always used to laugh and smile. My anxiety is causing me to be depressed.

Comment from: Poockie, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: June 30

I am a 40 year old mother of four and three grandchildren. I too have anxiety/panic attacks. I have had them for 7 years off and own. Now I have them regularly since February of 2011. I am taking celexa 40mg and xanax 5mg. I also see a therapist biweekly. It helps some but sometimes I feel bad when I leave. I am currently not working because of my sickness. The therapist came to the conclusion that I am stressed which is causing me to be depressed. I don't like being around a lot of people. I hate leaving the house. Most of the time I just stay in my room watching TV and reading. Sometimes I write in a journal. I fill weak when I'm out in the sun, I fill like I'm about to pass out. So I stay in until the sun goes down in the bed. Most of my days or spent in the bed asleep.

Comment from: TaraB, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: April 05

With my panic attacks, I experience shaking, sweaty palms, tunnel vision, and fear of passing out. I find it hard to walk or drive, and I also get chest pain, stomach upset, loss of bowel control and irritability.

Comment from: Daisy, 13-18 Female (Patient) Published: March 22

I am 17 years old, and my first panic attack was when I was 15 years old. I was at school and I felt my heart speeding up and I felt dizzy. I thought that I was going to faint. I told my parents. My dad had those symptoms too, and I’m guessing that that’s why I have them. I usually get them even when I’m at home. I get them every day at school, and it’s very scary! Now that I did more research on panic disorders, I figured it out that I need to go to the doctor and try to get this out of me. I try to think positively and for some reason, I can’t. Now I can’t even concentrate on school!

Published: March 08

I have had panic attacks for several years now and it’s devastating. I get symptoms of flushing, difficult breathing, sweating, my mind races uncontrollably, heart pounds really fast, I start shaking and my voice is feeble and shaky. All I want to do is run away and if I am caught somewhere that I must stay such as at work, it is so much worse. People have walked away from me because they don't understand what I am going through. It’s a nightmare with no end.

Comment from: LS650, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: February 24

I had a panic attack for the first time in a good 15 years on Tuesday. The symptoms were difficulty with breathing and "pins & needles" tingling in my left shoulder. I went to Emergency and was given an ECG, various blood tests, and a couple of chest X-Rays. The doctor said that on paper, my heart looks perfect, but they want to follow up with further tests for cholesterol and so forth, just to ensure it is not a cardiac issue.

Comment from: Kirsten1, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: January 20

With my panic attacks, I experience shortness of breath, pain in the chest, dizziness, cold and hot flashes, and blurred vision.

Comment from: 25-34 Male (Patient) Published: June 07

I had my first panic attack when I was 12 years old. I went to the doctor and he told me I have asthma -- way off. I had panic attacks again when I was 20 years old and was put on medications. Ten years later I have them again. My heart races, I can't stay still, I feel like I am going to die. I thought I was having a stroke or heart attack, I had an EKG done, everything was fine. I am back on medications, but it’s scary to have. Now that I can identify them I try not to get as scared.

Comment from: kassy193, 13-18 Female Published: April 27

I am a 13 year old girl. I have been experiencing these attacks since last year when my sister died and then my father. I don't have treatments for it because my mom doesn't understand or believe what I'm going through. I am constantly hiding my attacks so that nobody will know, and fear having them. All my symptoms fit (which include dizziness, shortness of breath, rapid heartbeat, and anxiousness)so I believe I have a panic disorder.

Comment from: Shannon, 13-18 Female (Patient) Published: April 11

I'm only 14 years old and I have been having panic attacks since age 10. I really never told anyone outside of my immediate family, but often my family just says I’m being a hypochondriac. Some of the dumbest things trigger it. I have an attachment to my mom and just thoughts of her sad, sick or hurt trigger attacks, same with being up late and worrying a lot. I get very clammy and jumpy, nauseous, shaky, and I cry for no reason. They usually last between 30 minutes to two hours. The worst one lasted four hours. It was horrible. It makes me feel less than human. I can’t have a normal teen life. I can’t have sleepovers because of my panic attacks and my friends teasing me about it. It has been four years of being a silent sufferer and I’m finally going to get help within the next week or so.

Comment from: meanjean1958, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: January 09

I am a 53 yr. old women who has experienced panic attacks for almost 9 years. Been on Ativan and Clonazepam works well. I have chest pain, crying, numbness in hands and feet. Feel sick say things that don't make sense. Cold and shivering. My legs do seem to want to move. Get a bad headache and when it's over after 30 mins. I feel like a worn out dish rag no energy everything hurts and nobody understands. I have been called crazy, hateful. Sorry to all my family. I do love you all very much. Just want to smile again. All from stress. Feels like a monster inside you.

Comment from: Zakk13, 19-24 Male (Patient) Published: December 19

I'm 24 and started to have panic attacks. I feel like I'm having a heart attack I'll get really light headed and my arms and chest get tingly. It usually lasts a few minutes but I've been getting them more often like around two or three times a day. I quit my job a few months ago and I'm having a lot of trouble finding another one. I think that's why I've been getting attacks more often because I'm kind of stressed out from worrying about things all the time.

Comment from: hallwoman29, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: November 16

I’m 29 years old, my bday was just on the 5th of November and I was sick with a cold. I had my first panic attack almost three years ago. However, I didn’t know that’s what it was and still is until this August. It was pretty upsetting to hear. But I’m glad that I know now. It happens every so often and it’s very scary. I feel very hopeless when they happen. My symptoms are fatigue, heart beating fast, and out of breath. I wish everything would just go back to normal that would make me happy.

Comment from: jem, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: August 24

I am 24 and been suffering with panic attacks since Feb. 2011 it was so scary and even though now I'm controlling them better some of my symptoms scare me. I get a pain in head and chest or racing heart or skipping a beat. Which can travel down my arm which makes me feel like I'm having a stroke or heart attack. This then can lead to other symptoms like sick shakes and shivers. I have cut all caffeine out my diet and seems to help. I don't really like being alone but I am fighting them. Best of luck to all who suffer.

Comment from: Pagejh, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: July 27

I am 42 and have dealt with anxiety since I was 18. I have not had it constantly, in fact was anxiety free for a long time till I had my first child at 29 then it came back but manageable. After my 3rd child I was having a hard time going to the grocery stores with the kids by myself so I decided to seek help and my doctor put me on meds(celexa). Worked great! I have been off and on it for last 7 years and I took myself off of it at the beginning this year and since the begining of July I have been having bad attacks. Last week was the worse - I had one at work and work is usually my "safe place" and I haven't left the house until this morning I went to see my doctor. I am back on my celexa but takes about a month to work so he has given me xantax for the quick relief. This is such a horrible way to live.

Comment from: indEstress, 13-18 Female (Patient) Published: July 08

It's always the same with my panic attacks. Tightness in my chest, racing heartbeat or a harder heartbeat, chest pain, trouble breathing, inability to control troublesome thoughts, shaking, and hysterical crying...

Comment from: Female Published: June 17

The feelings I get from having a panic attack are different sometimes. The very first one I ever had, I thought I was going to die. My mouth got tight, my hands clenched causing pain in my forearms, the back of my head felt tight and hurt, I had shortness of breath, my vision seemed weird. Then other times I feel tingly in my legs, arms, and face. Even feeling like I am just going to pass out and no one will know I did. I think it might depend on how far it goes. Like whether I'm having anxiety about something, or the feeling of extreme fear that something bad is going to happen.

Comment from: randomguy, 25-34 Male (Patient) Published: June 16

I am 30 years old. A couple of years ago I started having chest pains, and I felt like I was having a heart attack. I visited the ER, and eventually a cardiologist. Everything came back fine. I am having similar symptoms now. I get a little pain in my chest area and I feel a bit tingly in my hands and legs. It feels like I am going to die. I've had 4 EKGs (2 ER visits) since May. I have an appointment with a cardio doctor later this month. I've tried Citalopram and Paxil and both have made me feel worse. Also, I have visited a gastroenterologist to see if I have stomach issues causing my chest problems. I do have acid reflux, but the doctor did not think that was causing my chest pains. Hopefully, I will be able to get to the bottom of this because it seems to be disrupting my life every single day right now...

Comment from: TAR, 25-34 Female Published: June 03

I feel so terrible for anyone who suffers from this disorder. I have had panic attadcks since I was 17 years old! I am now 33. I thought that I was going crazy, and felt very alone. Nobody would listen to me, and they thought I was crazy. My heart would race for no reason, and I would have tunnel vision, my thoughts would race, and no matter how many times it would happen, I still had this feeling that my life would end in that moment. I still have a problem sometimes in certain places, but it is mostly under control. I think just understanding that I am not alone, and that it ultimately wont kill me gives a little piece of mind. I do take 20 ml of paxil which seems to help. YOU ARE NOT ALONE,YOU ARE NOT CRAZY. GET HELP AND LIVE AGAIN!

Comment from: peace, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: June 02

I started having panic attacks at about age 32. My symptoms were numbness or tingling in the arms, legs, around the mouth and chin as well as chest pressure and numbness in my right arm. I was diaagnosed about 6 months after my sister was. After being diagnosed my doctor put me on Prozac and the symptoms went away for the most part for years. It has only been in the last 2 months that I have been having daily to semi-daily panic attacks. I have been seeing a psychiatrist for 9 years and he just recently diagnosed me with bipolar II after I had a "breakdown". Now I am on Lamictal for the bipolar, Cymbalta for the panic disorder and Klonipin for anxiety and am currently doing much better!

Comment from: 26, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: May 10

I am 27 and suffering from panic attacks for the last 2 weeks it started off at night I’d wake up palms sweating, heart pounding, dizzy and shaking. It’s the scariest thing that ever happened to me it’s really getting me down and I feel depressed. I’m starting to feel really dizzy all the time now and can’t focus I feel like I’m going insane.

Comment from: Tmcgee, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: May 04

I am 35 years old and the first time I got a panic attack was august 23, 2010 driving to NC from NY. My heart was racing, I had palpitations, tingling in my hands and feet, I was dizzy, light headed, I was fearful and thought I was losing control and having a heart attack. I have been back and forth to several doctors and so many appointments. I use Klonapan but now I have started sertraline(Zoloft). I have them every day I am so fed up with this. I want to live a normal life, so now I see a psychologist. Hopefully I will get better.

Comment from: Anonymous, 19-24 Female Published: April 12

I'm 15 and experienced a very bad panic attach today before I went to school this morning, I was having heart palpitations and worried I wasn’t breathing right so I started panicking and then I had a panic attach and couldn’t breath, and still now my breathing is right as it was before. I have heart palpitations very often, everyday they’re horrible to experience.

Comment from: Anxietygirl, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: April 12

I have days of unending easiness and pounding heart and chest pain, or I will feel fine then all of a sudden I can't breathe normal, I move a lot, can't sit still or relax, have numbness in my hands and feet, my mind races, I can't function or barely talk, it's horrible, feel like I'm going to die or fade way. Nothing can help me at the moment except to walk around, go to the bathroom, do something but just sit.

Comment from: noni, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: March 22

I started having panic attacks about dying when I had my baby 4 months ago. I just can't see her without me. I'm always scared something really horrible is going 2 happen. I just cannot get over the fact that 1 day I will die and be no more. I don't feel safe anywhere, when going out I have 2 think twice, "what if I die and never see my baby, what will she do without me?" I always have questions like why does it have to happen? And will literally feel like I won't live to see the next hour. I'm constantly scared and really don't know what to do.

Comment from: carroll49, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: March 15

I haven't had many panic attacks. However, I feel they are going to kill me. I can't breathe, feel my air is being taken from me, my heart is going to jump out of my chest and I am frozen in place. It is as if I am lost, I do not know where I am, nothing around me exists, I am so scared.

Comment from: eyecaredeeply, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: March 08

Female, 51, and had my first attack last month (several more lesser ones since). Mom passed away two weeks prior, I am now my father's caregiver (Alzheimer's). I am on FMLA and very much want to return to work, but have been so stressed out dealing with him, living facilities, trying to empty/sell their house that I fear I won't get it all done in time. My first episode was while driving, dad was with me. I felt a sensation pass through my body from top of head to tips of toes. As it passed by my eyes, things went black for just a split-second. I literally felt it pass by my heart. It felt like electrodes going wrong. I felt faint, dizzy, started hyperventilating and was convinced I was having a heart attack or stroke. Pulled into a bank, went in and had them call an ambulance. I wasn't taken anywhere that day, but went to the ER about a week and a half later for another. Everything checked out. Have seen my regular doc, and will be going to see a cardio doc next week.

Comment from: scared, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: February 23

I recently started to experience some panic attacks and the following happens: shortness of breath, struggle to breathe, thinking it is a heart attack, scared of going to die, dizzy and feel that if I am going to pass out.

Comment from: Remar, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: February 08

In situations where I have to be under the spotlight, for tests, and practical’s I experience tachycardia, I break out into red splotches that feel a million degrees, and the pores on my face feel like they are all the size of dimes filled with hot air. I stumble over my words and can't seem to breathe right. I have never read of anyone else experiencing red splotches and a rise in BP like I get, makes me wonder.

Comment from: tpugh, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: January 31

My panic attacks always happen in the middle of the night. I wake up instantly in a panic. I shake and cry. My heart hurts, arms become numb, hands feel cold, legs won't move, and a cold streak runs down my back between my shoulder blades. I sometimes feel suicidal. I was in a violent marriage for over 10 years, but that was 20 years ago. I don't know what's going on; I have a great husband now. My poor husband tried to help, but he does not know how it feels or what to do. I am on citalopram now, which has not helped. This has been going on for about 10 years.

Comment from: KikiKitten, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: January 26

Shaking of the body (mostly arms and legs) dizziness, chest pains, fear of going back to sleep, shortness of breath, nervousness.

Comment from: ohiogambler, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: January 14

I am a 53 year old woman that has had panic disorder for many years. I’ve been on almost everything out there that the doctors want you to try, in other words being a guinea pig. I found that the only thing that gives me relief is xanax, however I take at least 1 to 2 mg a day to just get by and make it through another work day. I’ve been on the edge of quitting a wonderful job that I love but if they stop giving xanax I guess I give up the job which will affect my marriage. God give me the strength to deal with this better.

Comment from: dreamer, 13-18 Female (Patient) Published: June 20

I've had panic attacks since I was 10 years old. I have a sever phobia of insects and when I see one or they get close to me I shake and scream while swatting my hands in the air. After the situation I feel nauseous and really want to leave somehow. I'm thinking of seeing a psychiatrist.

Comment from: dls42, 35-44 Female (Caregiver) Published: June 18

For the last six months my panic attack symptoms began slowly. They started at a red light with chest pain and then I couldn't catch my breath. I stopped driving and felt better. Now I walk around in a constant fog. I feel like nothing is real, I’m light-headed and I'm waiting to pass out all the time with chest pains, and body aches. I’ve had five EKGs, a stress test, and a cardiac cath in the last year and nothing was found.

Comment from: 25-34 Male (Patient) Published: April 11

The first time I had a panic attack was when I was eating my supper at 10 p.m. I suddenly had an increased heart beat and nervousness. It was so hard to avoid and I thought it was my last moment of life. Amusingly it stopped after a hunger cramp. My doctor said that it is due to gastric effect and prescribed medications for it. Within one week it came back again. I consulted another doctor and he prescribed some medications for reducing anxiety.

Comment from: erin., 13-18 Female (Patient) Published: July 18

I experience hyperventilation, tingling in my face, hands, and feet, muscle spasms, chest pains, and a severe feeling that I'm going to suffocate and die.

Comment from: Jennifer, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: June 30

I am 36 and I stated having panic attacks. I feel like I am having a heart attack, shortness of breath, dizzy, can’t talk right and much more. I am on paxil and xanax and they seem to be working for me.