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What causes pain in the sternum?

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Orthopaedic Surgeon
Practicing since : 1994
Answered : 10639 Questions
Question
My 62 year old brother called me and said h was having pain just below his breastbone through to his back that started after he ate Mexican food and followed that with large BBQ brisket sandwich for lunch yesterday. He was not totally relieved by tums. He is a very active manual laborer and doesn't let anything slow him down. Bowels are normal with goo stool this a.m. No sweating or nausea or referred pain. Fairly healthy with some hypertension controlled by medication. Hurts to take a deep breath.
Sat, 9 Jun 2018 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
 
 
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
Can be GERD.

Detailed Answer:
Hello,
Thanks for posting your query.
The pain that he is having can be due to
Musculoskeletal inflammation - This can be diagnosed if the pain increases on specific movements or on direct pressure on the affected area. Such pain can respond to medications like Ibuprofen 400 mg taken three times a day. This generally resolves within a week. ‎

Pneumonitis Or Pleuritis : Here the pain increases on deep breaths and is associated with symptoms like cough, expectoration of mucus or purulent sputum, etc.

GERD: This condition too presents with the similar symptoms as described by you and usually subsides after taking Antacids or proton pump inhibitors group of drugs.
It is important to rule out the exact cause after physical examination and investigations. Hence, please see a Primary Doctor for complete examination and the treatment would follow according.
I hope this answers your query.
In case you have additional questions or doubts, you can forward them to me, and I shall be glad to help you out.
Wishing you good health.
Regards.
Dr. Praveen Tayal.
For future query, you can directly approach me through my profile URL http://bit.ly/Dr-Praveen-Tayal

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