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Costochondritis Causes

The causes of this disease is not known most of the time. Some recognizable causes, however, are listed as injury such as a blow to the chest, infection, and pain from other areas of the body which may trigger the brain to signal pain to other parts of the body.

Costochondritis Definition

Costochondritis (or Costal chondritis) is a mild inflammation of the cartilage that connects a rib to the breastbone. It is also called Tietze's syndrome after the German surgeon who first described the disorder, Alexander Tietze. Depending on the severity of the case, swelling may or may not be present in the cartilage. It causes sharp pain, not unlike that of a heart attack.

Costochondritis Diagnosis

Doctors recognize the disease by conducting a physical exam and by examining your history and experiences. Chest X-Rays and other imaging scans are employed not to diagnose the condition, but to help rule out other diseases.

Costochondritis Symptoms and Signs

Patients with costochondritis suffer from pain and tenderness in the affected areas. The intensity of pain ranges from sharp to less severe dull ones. One may also experience pain when taking deep breaths and coughing, and difficulty in breathing.

Costochondritis Treatment

Medication may not be necessary for this condition because Costochondritis and the pain it causes just fade away. Doctors may prescribe nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (ibuprofen and naproxen), antidepressants, and muscle relaxants to help patients deal with the pain. One may also exercise, rest and use heating pad.

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