If you’re like me, you probably won’t have heard of costochondritis until you or someone you know is diagnosed with it. I speak from experience because costochondritis, an inflammation of the segments of cartilage — called costosternal joints — that connect the ribs to the breastbone, wasn’t even on my radar when I went to the emergency room late one recent night with pain and tightness in my chest.
Turns out I’m far from the first person with costochondritis to show up in the ER thinking they might be having a heart attack.
Approximately 50% of patients with chest pain have a noncardiac or nonpulmonary basis for their symptoms. One of the noncardiac, nonpulmonary causes of chest pain is Tietze’s syndrome (TS). This was first described in 1921 by Tietze.
All morning sitting in my chair at my desk I felt a creeping but clear pressure growing in my chest. “Perhaps I worked out too hard this morning” I thought, since I had been doing much more weightlifting than ever before. I had felt good for a month or two, and hitting the gym hard felt amazing. No, it couldn’t be that.
Costochondritis can be extremely painful yet, mercifully, it’s often relatively benign. Much of the medical literature suggests that it will usually go away on its own within a few days, but some patients report symptoms that can linger for weeks or even months. It can also be a recurring condition that appears to have little or no warning of onset.
Tietze's means so much more than "inflammation of the costal cartilages."
People need to understand that.
I am not looking for sympathy, I am simply stating how my life has changed since being diagnosed with Tietze's.
Tietze syndrome is characterized by mild to severe localized pain and tenderness in one or more of the upper four ribs. The second or third ribs are most often affected. In most people, the cartilage of only one rib is affected. A firm, spindle-shaped swelling occurs in the cartilage of the affected rib. An aching, gripping, sharp, dull, or neuralgic pain occurs in this area. Sometimes, the pain may spread to affect the neck, arms and shoulders. Redness (erythema) and warmth of the affected area may be present.
Treatment, resources, and more...
This website is intended to provide information about costochondritis pain, and to point to relevant resources, information and specialists. Use the information provided to understand the causes of costochondritis pain, the diagnosis and treatment.
I am a teenager with costochondritis/Tietze's/scoliosis and have been suffering from the pain for about 3 years now. YUCK! Hope my blog will be helpful for other teenagers/kids/adults with costo and just trying to raise awareness about this horrible syndrome!
This condition and costochondral syndrome were initially described as two separate diseases, the sole difference being the amount of swelling of the costal cartilages. Breastbone pain is commonly caused by this little understood, and generally poorly managed syndrome. It also affects the joint between the collarbone and the sternum; the sternoclavicular joint.
It was first named by a German physician early in the twentieth century.
Costochondritis is the medical term for inflammation of the cartilage that joins your ribs to your breastbone (sternum). This area is known as the costochondral joint.
First described by Alexander Tietze in 1921, Tietze's syndrome has been defined as a benign, painful, non-suppurative localised swelling of the costosternal, sternoclavicular or costochondral joints, most often involving the area of the second and third ribs. Only one area is usually involved and young adults are more commonly affected. The syndrome is uncommon and self-limiting.
Tietze’s syndrome is very similar to another condition called costochondritis, which also causes pain in the costochondral joint. Sometimes, Tietze’s syndrome and costochondritis are thought to be the same, although only Tietze’s syndrome results in both pain and inflammation.