Chest pain and sinus congestion in a 42 year old man

I attended a presentation that Dr. Schubiner gave in March of this year concerning our mind’s ability to create physiological responses to stress. While sitting there I began thinking of a reoccurring chest and left arm pain that I was experiencing on a regular basis. I had seen my physician about it and had had the routinely prescribed tests to determine its cause, and unfortunately nothing was found. I started to think about when these pains would occur. It became clear to me that the pains always occurred when I was thinking about or involved in something stressful or troubling, and almost always would go away shortly after the stress was removed.

After your presentation and took your advice and bought Dr. John Sarno’s book, The Mindbody Prescription: Healing the Body, Healing the Pain. During the days and weeks following your presentation and while reading the book, the chest and arm pain became less intense and eventually dissipated providing me very welcomed relief. Occasionally, I would detect its reemergence, but I was able to make it go away by simply acknowledging what circumstances I found myself in or by recognizing what I was thinking about that may be causing the reaction. Each time this occurred, the pain would go away shortly there after.

Dr. Sarno indicated in his book that they are an entire host of other maladies that may be driven by the mind’s reaction to stressful situations. This led me to reflect on the last 10 years of my life. Going back as far as 1998, I have been treated for gastrointestinal discomfort twice, ulcers, intense back pain, a heal spur, joint pain, as well as nasal and skin allergies. All of these medical problems were real and were prescribed treatments, but had no apparent causes and were left unexplained.

Along with the chest and arm pain one chronic medical condition, nasal allergies, has persisted until just a few months ago. My allergy symptoms were so severe at times that I would have daily sneezing jags along with routine allergy induced asthma attacks. I have been treated for allergies for over three years. My physician told me that I have three primary allergens, dust mites, cat saliva, and tree and grass pollen. As a result, I have had allergy shots, taken regularly prescribed antihistamines and have taken steps to avoid allergic triggers. None of these things have provided any substantial relief.

After reading Dr. Sarno’s book, I began to examine the possibility that how and what I think about may be connected to my allergies as well as the chest and arm pain. Since March, I have stopped taking all allergy medications and I have not made any attempt to avoid allergic triggers. Incredibly, I have been virtually symptom free. The few times that I have had symptoms develop they have quickly gone away by simply noticing what is happening and connecting it to what I am thinking about or what is happening at the time.

The last 3 months have provided me with the most consistent physical well being I have had in years. I am sleeping better, breathing better, and feel a greater sense of control over how I feel physically. I appreciate the help you have provided me and wanted to share this with you.

Robert H.

*The personal stories are from actual course participants and are used with permission. The names and photos have been changed to protect confidentiality.