What is it?
Tietze syndrome is an inflammation of the cartilage that connects a rib to the breastbone (sternum). Pain caused by Tietze syndrome might mimic that of a heart attack or other heart conditions.
What are the symptoms?
When the costochondral joint becomes inflamed it can result in sharp chest pain and tenderness, which may develop gradually or start suddenly.
The pain may be made worse by:
- a particular posture such as lying down
- pressure on your chest such as wearing a seatbelt or hugging someone
- deep breathing, coughing and sneezing
- physical activity
Tietzes syndrome is not common and often causes chest swelling, which may last after any pain and tenderness has gone.
- Over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs pain relievers. Ask your doctor about using ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) or naproxen sodium (Aleve, others).
- Heat or ice. Try placing hot compresses or a heating pad on the painful area several times a day. Keep the heat on a low setting. Ice also might be helpful.
- Rest. Avoid activities that make your pain worse.
Things to watch out for
If youve had chest pain for a while, dont ignore it. Make an appointment to see your GP so they can investigate the cause