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Recently I started feeling severe pain in my chest. I thought that I was having a heart attack, due to a fact that there is a history of heart problems in my family. I went to my doctor and he diagnosed me with costochondritis. What causes my condition? What are other symptoms?

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Costochondritis is a common form of inflammation of the cartilage where ribs attach to the sternum, the breast bone. The inflammation is usually on one side of the sternum, but it can involve multiple cartilage areas on both sides of the sternum. The symptoms of sternum inflammation sometimes feel like those of a heart attack. Some patients find it more difficult to breathe. The causes of costochondritis are not known and they can involve several factors. Possible causes are genetic predisposition, viruses, and injury. During the acute phase of sternum inflammation, pain is usually worse and it hurts to breathe or move suddenly. The symptoms often disappear within two months but they can also become a chronic condition. When chronic, the pain seems to come and go with sudden movements or lifting heavy objects. Other things that hurt are sneezing, coughing, pulling, pushing, long hours of driving etc. I advise u to minimize these activities until the inflammation of the rib and cartilage areas has subsided. Rest, anti-inflammatory drugs, physical therapy, and even cortisone injections have been used as therapy for the sternum inflammation.
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i had the exact thing happen to me.. im thirteen.. and i seriously dont think that costochondritis is it... nothing adds up.. i mean.. is this disease genetic? because no one in my family has experienced this.. its all so confusing.. maybe its an allergic reaction.. do you still get it every now and then?
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costochondritis IS most likely it... 18.. got it from soccer.. as a goalie I took several kicks in the chest.. that did it for me.. multiple other things can do it... it's not like they're trying to diagnose you with some disease.. it's just fancy name for the inflammation of that cartilage.. basically means something (in my case repetitive injury) caused irritation there. it could be allergies/irregularity in breathing cause other ppls' .... who knows.. could be a virus you don't even notice in anyway other than that.. or it could be that's not YOUR problem.. but costochondritis IS for real, not just made up.. yeah the word is made up to name the symptom.. but it's for real.. i dont think it's anything too serious unless the pain begins to really interfere with normal activities (breathing, movement..) the body should heal itself, but with ribs and that area we can be talking months that could turn to a year or more..
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I went to see the doctor about pressure in my sternum and surrounding ribs as well, thinking I was having a heart attack and he diagnosed me with this. They checked my BP and auscultated my heart with a stethoscope and said my heart is fine, which is good.

Anyway, I never knew that parts of the rib cage are cartilage rather than solid bone. Cartilage, of course, can get swollen and become tender because it is softer. I suppose even bone (the sternum) can as well.

I'm just glad it's this and not what I thought it was.

Still, though. Months? Yee gadz...
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I too was recently diagnosed with costochondritis! What a shock! My doctor said to use Advil and heat or ice packs (which ever helped more). Does anyone know how long this may last? I usually workout at the gym, but that aggrevates the condition...
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I have psoriatic arthritis, It causes pain in joints all over my body. I have pain in my Sternum most days. It was the first area to show up in my first bone scan. I was admitted to hospital by my GP because he thought I was having a cardiac arrest. I now how painful it can be and how debilitating it is, people don't realize how much our rig cage moves when we go about our daily business. Some mornings I can't get out of bed without help. It feels like I was hit in the chest with a sledge hammer.
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I am having this chest wall pain from early 2 years on and off but from last 5 months it become worse and painful I couldn't move my hands can't go anywhere or lift anything am taking prednisone 5mg and ibuprofen but still having a chronic pain..I have done MRI and it shows a little swollen on sternum but I don't know what to next and how can get rid of it ...am scared of having heart attack and having life long pain and being unable to do any basic thing... Please if anyone know anything about my problem ..suggest me.
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I am writing in hopes that someone can help me. I have been battling costochondritis for almost 10 years. The pain comes and goes without warning. It has progressed to the point where my sternum area will spasm (this started in April 2016). I have tried various medications (ibuprofen, hydrocodone, flexeril, tizanidine, valium, lidocaine patch, physical therapy, steroid packs) I'm not sure what else to do...... I am so glad that I am not the only one dealing with this.... I have not met anyone else that I can relate to. I will take any advice or feedback.

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Hi mate, you're the first person I've found on the internet with psoriatic arthritis of the sternum....something I've had now for 2 n half years....I had been on steroids for most of it which helped to a point however I am now off them due to the long term side effects as I'm only 33. I have had countless scans and offered arcoxia which hasn't helped one bit. I am in constant pain all day all night. Can't cope most the time but you put a brave face on and get on with it...I'm told that methotrexate is next for me, I just wonder if it is indeed PsA though or something else that hasn't yet been discovered as the coverage on PsA in the sternum isn't anywhere to be found!!
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I went to emergency with severe chest pain. I was checked out head to toe. Then they told me my chest bone was inflamed. Since I also have broken ribs I was told to do deep breathing and it is amazing that is it helping with some of the inflammation.
I see the doctor next week because of another test they did. I just want this over with.
I am sleeping a little better. I can roll over. If I feel it is to much to roll over I do deep breathing and it helps.
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I also have PsA - currently on Humira
was on Enbrel for 3 years previously
Now 40, this Psoriatic Arthritis has really impacted on my lifestyle
try to stay positive most days but of course get days when it feels rubbish
This sternum Pain is what flared up first with me - had a lump size of a golf ball come up on my sternum
over past year getting a lot of rib pain and today the enthesisis / joint pain is significant
catches breath and don’t feel like trying to move
Just sharing my experiences and hoping that the Humira works better but it doesn’t seem to handle this sternum pain
Etorocoxib doesn’t seem to do much either and I don’t want to add methotrexate or sulphaselesene as neither seemed to add anything into the treatment other than side effects last time
Any help / advice guys and gals ?
Wishing you more pain free days than not
From Sunny South Wales, UK x JC
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Cortisone shots in your sternum should alleviate it!
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