What is Musculoskeletal Chest Pain, its Causes, Medication, and Treatment?
Musculoskeletal Chest Pain is the pain that affects the muscles,joints,tendons, ligaments of the chest area of a body. They are the common causes for chest wall pain and will need immediate attention from a heart specialist or cardiologist.
In case a heart doctor feels that you might be suffering from musculoskeletal chest pain or chest pain symptoms such as a rib fracture, then they will check along your rib cage, chest area, sternum and see if there is any swelling or not. They will be prodding around to check for any particular swelling to figure out the source of the musculoskeletal chest pain.
Chest pain symptoms account for 1% to 3% visit to the primary care provider and 21% to 49% of these patients are diagnosed with musculoskeletal chest pain.
Most common musculoskeletal chest pain symptoms
Musculoskeletal chest pain is characterized by the following symptoms:
-Pain can range from acute to chronic
-Affects all ages, risk increases with age
-Both genders are equally at risk
-Requires a medical diagnosis with rare use of lab tests or imaging
-Usually resolves in a few days or week’s time
People with this condition are at risk such as costochondritis, panic attack, fibromyalgia, slipping rib syndrome, trauma, muscle injury, muscle strain, sternalis syndrome, Thoracic costovertebral joint dysfunction and chondral cartilage injury (fracture).
Additionally, people with musculoskeletal chest wall pain may experience:
- Pain in numerous areas of the body including, chest and abdomen, sometimes extending to the neck and back region. The pain can be a stabbing sensation, making it difficult to bear.
- In some cases, the person might experience a numbing sensation, which can obscure the true extent of the pain.
- Shortness of breath
- Visible swelling and tenderness of the person’s chest muscles.
- Serious weakness, making it difficult to stand up straight. In such a case, let the person sit down and seek immediate help.
Musculoskeletal Chest Pain Treatment:
Musculoskeletal chest pain treatment usually involves a combination of self-care at home and medication prescribed by a doctor.
Self-Care: Stretching, putting ice on chest, healthy diet, regular check-ups and follow-ups with the health provider.
Medications: Over-the-counter pain relievers and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) helps temporarily, however, for long-term resolution of the condition, a medical diagnosis musculoskeletal chest wall pain is required.
Specialists: Visit a heart doctor for musculoskeletal chest pain treatment if you experience intense chest pain. Consult a heart specialist to understand the reasons for chest pain and undertake treatment before the symptoms become too severe.
As with any other health condition, preventing the onset of musculoskeletal chest pain is more effective than treating the symptoms once they occur. A cardiac risk assessment test and a periodic full-body health checkup for men or full-body health checkup for women can help identify risk factors before it’s too late.
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