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Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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What causes pain under the left breast and breathing difficulty?

Answered by
Dr. Shoaib Khan

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2009

Answered : 9410 Questions

Posted on Fri, 3 Mar 2017 in Lupus
Question: I am a 63 yr old female. Diagnosed 20 yrs ago with SLE (kidneys) and Sjogren's. But taking little medication nowadays.

Having moderate pain in large area at top of ribs just under left breast. At times pain goes all the way around my chest or at least feels that way. Has increased over the past year. Feels difficult to hold my chest "up". Get some relief when lying down only Also having aching deep within both armpits which has been over last four months - like someone has their fist shoved up my armpit. Don't know if they are associated - the pain at top of ribs is more urgent. I have no back issues. Weight 124 and 5'4". Walk 3 miles EVERY day no matter the weather. Can you offer some suggestions and/or help me to explain better to my doctors. I have a neurologist and a rheumatologist. Thank you.
Answered by Dr. Shoaib Khan 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
?? Suspecting Tietze syndrome, worth considering

Detailed Answer:
Hello ma'am and welcome.

Thank you for writing to us.

I have gone through your query with diligence and would like you to know that I am here to help. I do believe there is a possibility of your presentation being associated with tietze syndrome (also called costochondritis).

This condition is seen more commonly in women, and presents with chest pain especially around the upper ribs, with pain spreading to the hands, axillary region and shoulders at times.

This condition is self-resolving (resolves without treatment in most cases), but when it doesn't does require the use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (e.g. Ibuprofen, Naproxen, etc.) or local steroid injections. Please discuss with your doctor about the same.

I hope you find my response helpful and informative. Please feel free to write back to me for any further clarifications, I am always here to help.

Best wishes.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Arnab Banerjee

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