Costochondritis: Relationship of Chest Pain and Fibromyalgia

People who are suffering from fibromyalgia know that there are numerous types of symptoms that are connected with fibromyalgia. Those people also know that their syndrome has a huge pain connection that occurs in the chest. Costochondritis is one of these.

Costochondritis occurs in a lot of people having fibromyalgia. But people having both of these conditions don’t know that both of them require separate and different treatment. Moreover, the reason behind the costochondritis pain either be same or not be the same source of fibromyalgia pain. Unfortunately, you can have a worse condition if your fibromyalgia goes untreated. Still, it is important to treat your costochondritis as well.

Is the entire chest pains supposed to be Costochondritis?

Well, definitely it is not like that. People, who are having it, think that cardiac issues are the reason behind the pain. Some people have so intense costochondritis pain that they started to think of having a heart attack.

What actually costochondritis is?

It is an inflammation of the costal cartilage, the structure that connects each rib to the sternum (breastbone) at the cost sternal joint. Some people experience the pain as if they are having a heart attack, while other people feel as if it’s just a simple pain.

Causes of Costochondritis

The real causes of costochondritis have not been known yet, just like in the case of fibromyalgia. We hope that we will get answers to it soon with the help of new medical and scientific-technological advancements. A lot of professionals and doctors believe that trauma in the chest area or some viral infection, particularly in the respiratory area could be a cause of costochondritis.

Another theory says that costochondritis could be caused due to fibromyalgia. People feel a lot of pain in their chest area if they have both of these conditions as compared to people with just costochondritis. But, there are some minorities, who don’t have fibromyalgia but are suffering from costochondritis. So it seems like fibromyalgia may not be the actual cause of it.

There is no count of numbers officially, but professionals and doctors are agreed that out of every 5 fibromyalgia patients, more than 3 patients either suffer from costochondritis also or have symptoms that are similar to the symptoms of costochondritis. It is also known that inflammation is not caused by fibromyalgia and chest pain is all about inflammation.

However, the inflammation and fibromyalgia pressure points might play a role together that could help in explaining the reason behind greater chest pain in patients who have costochondritis and fibromyalgia as compared to those who don’t have fibromyalgia. It is also interesting to note that costochondritis can heal up within days.

There is a chance of having fibromyalgia if your symptoms of costochondritis do not heal up for at least a week or two.

Costochondritis symptoms

Pain in the chest wall or in the ribcage is one of the common symptoms of costochondritis. You will feel worse pain if you move around more, as the cartilage inflammation will only get worse. Pain in the nerves of the chest and swelling of painful areas are other common symptoms.

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The official way of diagnosing costochondritis is applying pressure on the painful areas in your breastbones and ribs, and if the worse pain is felt, you probably have costochondritis. There are a number of tests that doctors and professionals can conduct, as the reason behind pain can be cardiac or heart problems.

The way you treat costochondritis is the same way as you treat other types of inflammation. This involves, setting ice to the areas that are painful and treating the problem with approved drugs.

Living with both pains could be so much difficult for people. Your life can even get worse by just having one condition. But is good news for everyone that costochondritis is easily treated and managed as compared to fibromyalgia.


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