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Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

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Tietze syndrome


Other Names for this Disease

  • Chondropathia tuberosa
  • Costochondral junction syndrome
  • Tietze's syndrome
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.

Overview

What is Tietze syndrome?

What are the signs and symptoms of Tietze syndrome?

What causes Tietze syndrome?

How might Tietze syndrome be treated?

What is Tietze syndrome?

Tietze syndrome is an inflammatory condition characterized by chest pain and swelling of the cartilage that joins the upper ribs to the breastbone (costochondral junction). Signs and symptoms may include mild to severe pain, which can begin gradually or suddenly; the pain may worsen due to sneezing, coughing or strenuous activity. In some cases, pain may spread to the neck, shoulders or arms. While the exact cause of Tietze syndrome is not known, some cases may occur secondary to other disorders such as psoriatic arthritis. It is generally considered a benign condition and may resolve on its own without treatment. Management may include minimizing physical activity; applying local heat; and taking pain medications and/or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Tietze syndrome is sometimes confused with a similar condition called costochondritis which is characterized by painful, tender, but non-swollen costochondral joints.[1][2]
Last updated: 9/24/2013

What are the signs and symptoms of Tietze syndrome?

Signs and symptoms of Tietze syndrome usually occur in young adulthood (in individuals under 40 years of age). More than 70% of cases occur on only one side (unilateral) and affect one joint. The most common symptom is chest pain, which can range from mild to severe and can begin gradually or suddenly. Pain is typically localized to the affected area, but it can spread to other areas such as the arms and shoulders. Coughing, sneezing, deep breathing, and lying prone (face down) may worsen the pain. The affected joint is typically tender and swollen. While the pain associated with Tietze syndrome usually subsides after several weeks or months, the swelling may persist.[2][1]
Last updated: 9/24/2013

What causes Tietze syndrome?

The exact underlying cause of Tietze syndrome is currently unknown. Some researchers have speculated that small injuries to the anterior chest wall may contribute to the development of the condition. Some cases may occur secondary to other disorders such as psoriatic arthritis.[2]
Last updated: 9/24/2013

How might Tietze syndrome be treated?

In some individuals, the pain associated with Tietze syndrome resolves on its own without any treatment. Management options for others may include avoidance of strenuous activity; applying local heat; taking pain medications and/or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs; and receiving local corticosteroid injections. Although the pain usually subsides after several weeks or months, swelling may persist.[3][2][1]
Last updated: 9/24/2013

References
  1. Tietze syndrome. NORD. April 16, 2008; http://www.rarediseases.org/rare-disease-information/rare-diseases/byID/637/viewAbstract. Accessed 9/23/2013.
  2. Gijsbers E, Knaap SF. Clinical presentation and chiropractic treatment of Tietze syndrome: A 34-year-old female with left-sided chest pain. J Chiropr Med. March 2011; 10(1):60-63.
  3. Liu NYN, Canoso JJ. Periarticular Rheumatic Disorders. In: Greene HL, Levinson W, Modest GA, Mulrow CD, Scherger JE, Young MJ. Noble: Textbook of Primary Care Medicine, 3rd ed. Philadelphia, PA: Mosby; 2001;


Other Names for this Disease
  • Chondropathia tuberosa
  • Costochondral junction syndrome
  • Tietze's syndrome
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.