Perils of Passage

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Liz Gibson was spending a lazy Sunday in her home in eastern England last year when she noticed a strange, tugging sensation in the left side of her chest. The pain — which Gibson, then 48, likens to a pulled muscle — worsened throughout the day, leaving her puzzled and fearful. By nightfall she was finding it difficult to breathe. Early the next morning, she was in the emergency ward of her local hospital surrounded by staff trying to establish the cause of her distress. After they had given Gibson oxygen and tested for a heart attack, one of them asked...