How do you relieve pain from costochondritis?


Quick Answer

Prescription medications and physical therapy can help relieve pain from costochondritis, as Mayo Clinic reports. Over-the-counter pain-reducing medications, such as naproxen sodium, and resting properly help to reduce the pain as well. Applying hot and cold compresses to the affected area help to relieve the pain as well. Surgery may be helpful if nonsurgical treatments fail to counter the problem.

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Full Answer

Narcotic pain medications for costochondritis include Vicodin, Percocet and Tylox, as Mayo Clinic states. Stronger nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs help to relieve severe pain; however, the drugs may damage the kidney and stomach lining. Other drugs that can alleviate pain associated with the condition include anti-seizure drugs, such as Neurontin, and tricyclic anti-depressants.

Physical therapy includes light stretching exercises and transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, explains Mayo Clinic. Physical examination may help provide diagnosis. The doctor may recommend magnetic resonance imaging, X-rays and other imaging tests to rule out other conditions.

Symptoms include sharp or stabbing chest pain, pain that worsens with coughing or breathing deeply and pain on the left side of the breastbone, according to Mayo Clinic. A person who experiences chest pain should seek immediate medical attention. Causes include arthritis, chest injury, and benign or malignant tumors. Costochondritis may also occur as a result of fungal, viral or bacterial joint infection as well as chronic coughing and other strenuous activities.

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