Costochondritis: Meaning, Diagnosis and Overview

What is Costochondritis?

Costochondritis is inflammation of the junctions where the upper ribs join with the cartilage that holds them to the breastbone or sternum. It is a harmless condition and usually goes away without treatment. Pain caused by costoshondritis may mimic that of a heart attack or other heart conditions. 
Costochondritis may be referred by other names, including chest wall pain, costosternal syndrome and costosternal chondrodynia. When the pain of costochondritis is accompanied by swelling, it is referred to as Tietze syndrome.
Costochondritis overview

Recovery Time

  • For the early diagnosed patients it may take up to 6 weeks for recovery.
  • In chronic cases it will be permanent.


Costochondritis is diagnosed by medical history and physical examination or imaging tests which include
  • Chest X-ray
  • ECG
  • Blood test

FAQs prepared by doctor

Q1.  What is Costochondritis? 
Costochondritis is a self-limiting inflammation of the coastal chondral joint. 

Q2.  How do I get Costochondritis?
The cause is unknown. It may be caused due to physical injury, lifting heavy weight or it can occur along with other inflammatory joint condition such as Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid arthritis or fibromyalgia.

Q3.  What is the treatment for Costochondritis?
The treatment is usually conservative with hot fomentation and medication to relieve pain. 

Q4.  How long does it take to cure?
Costochondritis is usually a self-limiting condition. It resolves within 3-5days.

Q5.  How do I prevent Costochondritis?
You can prevent Costochondritis by taking proper diet and avoiding heavy exercise.

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