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Is Your Chest Pain Related to Rheumatoid Arthritis- What You Didn't Know about Costochondritis

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Out of all kinds of chest pains, Costochondritis is the one that rises out of inflamed cartilage. It often results in localized chest pain which may feel like the onset of a heart attack. However, it is harmless in most cases and doesn’t require any treatment.


10% to 30% of chest pain cases in children turns out to be Costochondritis. Often, the cause is unknown. It’s observed that a pain of this kind in the chest is more common in women than in men. Many instances of patient stories mention doctors and nurses mistaking Costochondritis for Tietze Syndrome, a rather rare condition in which pain spreads to your arms and shoulders and stays active for weeks.

The Equation of Costochondritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis

Once you’re affected by rheumatoid arthritis, your immune system is the first casualty. Instead of locating and fighting germs, your immune system focuses on your body. It perceives your joint’s linings as foreign elements.

The white blood cells enter the synovial joints and begin to damage them. The resulting inflammation affects the joints of your hand and feet, supportive muscles, tendons, and ligaments.

There is no straight condition between Costochondritis and rheumatoid arthritis, except that the former could arise from inflammation of the sternum-rib joining cartilage and the later can result in inflammation of bone joints all over the body.

Other Causes of Costochondritis

If you use your arms too violently, tear something inside, or face any trauma to your chest wall, it could result in Costochondritis. It could also arise out of viral or fungal infections, bacterial onslaught because of surgery, minor trauma to the chest, or from straining your chest muscles because of violent coughing.


Costochondritis is characterized by a tenderness around the rib-cartilage juncture, something you won’t experience in Tietze syndrome. Other common and more or less harmless signs that point to this condition include a dull pain in the front of your chest that suddenly gets sharp, pain during deep breath or a cough, around the fourth, fifth, and sixth rib.

However, if you face difficulty in moving or breathing and notice tender skin, swelling around the rib joints, high fever, redness, increased swelling, and pus around the sore rib joint, nausea and sweating, you should contact the doctor as soon as possible and get yourself checked out.

Costochondritis May Scare You but Rest Assured, It's Not a Heart Attack

This pain can be sharp, pressure-like, and aching- all the symptoms that you get in a heart attack. If you try to move your upper body, the pain could worsen. Facing intense symptoms like that can be scary. Especially if you have rheumatoid arthritis, it is worth it to keep in mind that your chest pain could be nothing more than Costochondritis.

However, that information is only for the peace of your mind. You must not avoid visiting a doctor by brushing chest discomfort aside as Costochondritis, especially if you’ve never experienced a pain of this kind before.

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