What is it?

Tietze's disease is a rare inflammation of the cartilage attaching the upper four ribs to the sternum, causing chest pain. It typically appears before the age of 40 and the reason for this condition is not fully understood. Yet, it is believed that it is caused due to microtraumas to the chest wall, occurring during injuries, infections, coughing, vomiting or surgery in that area.

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Additional names

This group contains additional names:
- Costochondritis
- Slipping Rib Syndrome

Signs & symptoms

Symptoms may include sharp, dull or aching pain in the chest, typically one-sided. It could sometimes radiate to the neck, shoulders, and arms. The affected area may be red, warm and tender. The pain may worsen while breathing deeply, coughing, sneezing, exercising, or performing sudden movements.


Diagnosis is based upon findings from medical history and physical examination. Further evaluation may include chest X-ray, CT scan, ECG, MRI and a biopsy.


Treatment may include rest, icing, non steroidal anti inflammatory medications, and sometimes injections with corticosteroids and lidocaine.

☝️ This is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision.

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