June 10, 2008
A reader writes to ask:
I’m writing to see if you have had any experience working with someone with costochondritis?
Thanks for writing. I've only just been introduced to costochondritis since I've started PT school. That doesn't mean I didn't run into it in my practice, I just may not have known what it was. I'm assuming that your client has been referred by a doctor to have approached you with a condition name. If they have not, it is crucial that they get checked by a doctor in case they have something more serious such as heart disease, lung disease, gastrointestinal problems or osteoarthritis.
I like the Mayo clinic website for giving a nice, concise description of a lot of conditions that clients present with. If you haven't checked it out already, here's what they say about costochondritis:
Costochondritis is an inflammation of the cartilage that connects a rib to the breastbone (sternum). It causes sharp pain in the costosternal joint — where your ribs and breastbone are joined by rubbery cartilage. Pain caused by costochondritis may mimic that of a heart attack or other heart conditions.
They also suggest heat as a self-care treatment (I find that interesting, usually inflammation responds well to ice . . . ). If you use hot stones in your practice, this would be a great time to use them. Of course, work within this person's pain threshold and keep up good communication. Chances are this condition will clear up in a week or two according to Mayo clinic.
I hope this has been helpful for you and thanks for reading.
Posted by linda at June 10, 2008 7:11 AM
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