Medical Definition of Costochondritis

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Costochondritis: Inflammation and swelling of the cartilage of the chest wall, usually involving the cartilage that surrounds the breastbone (sternum) but sometimes including the adjacent tip of a rib. Costochondritis causes local pain and tenderness of the chest around the sternum. Treatment options include anti-inflammatory medications and, in severe cases, corticosteroid injections. Also known as Tietze syndrome.

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Reviewed on 12/4/2018

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