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Can pectus excavatum cause severe pain in chest ?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2008
Answered : 3344 Questions
Hi.. i am a 35 year old female. in good health and wieght. i have pain in the lower left front side of my rib cage, but feels behind ribs... it feels like a side stitch common to exercise etc... but has lasted for 3 days and appeared in my sleep and i woke up to it. It sometimes is dull pain for example when breathibng in and sometimes stabbing severe when moving or laying on it.. no shortness in breath at all and still able to exercise but have to breathe through pain or slow down. It worsens to bend over or lay on the side.. but is ok to sit most times, sometimes it hurst sitting also. It feels intense when i take a XXXXXXX breathe but still like a side stitch, but not all XXXXXXX breathes. the pain fluctuates. I have had a stitch before when running but it never lasted longer than the exercise period. to bend over to side or downwards makes it rush to a really intense bad pain. any suggestions? side note: i do have pectus excavatum.. and im not constipated and have passed gas.
Posted Mon, 30 Apr 2012 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Raju A.T 1 hour later

Thanks for your query,I have read through it in detail .

Pectus excavatum if of sever degree can give rise to pain in the chest due to faulty attachment in some of the several muscle attached to the ribs and the sternum , well in your case I do not suspect them, as the pain you feel is in the inner chest which makes me to consider the stomach problems as the prime cause here.

The stomach cause include mild gastritis to an gastric ulcer, this can easily be ruled our by an upper GI endoscopy.

The other possibility could be stitch as there is positional variation in the pain.If you have any pain in the shoulder ,will support this diagnosis.Very rarely the pain can last long and such presentation common in people with Pectus Excavatum where the diaphragmatic attachments to the bones surrounding and its attachments to the organs inside are at stake.

Do get an Upper GI endoscopy first this will rule out the most expected cause for the chest pain.

Hope I have answered your query. If you have any follow up queries I will be available to answer them.
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