Alternate Names : Thoracic Pain, Chest Wall Pain
What are the treatments for the condition?
Treatment is directed at the underlying cause of the chest pain. For example, a person with an infection such as pneumonia is treated with antibiotics. A person with aortic dissection may need surgery. Pain medications can be given to control pain. In some cases this is the only option since the underlying cause cannot be treated. An example of this situation would be a person with chest pain due to lung cancer. Pain medications such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and narcotics may be ordered.
What are the side effects of the treatments?
All medications have possible side effects. For example, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can cause allergic reactions and stomach upset. Narcotics can cause nausea, constipation and allergic reactions. Other side effects are also possible, depending on the medication used. Surgery carries the risks of bleeding, infection and allergic reactions to pain medications. More specific side effects depend on the surgery performed.
What happens after treatment for the condition?
If the underlying cause is treated, the chest pain will usually go away. Some people may need ongoing pain medication. This would be the case for people with arthritis.
How is the condition monitored?
Affected people can monitor their own chest pain and how well it responses to treatment. Chest pain can be a serious symptom and should not be ignored. Those with severe chest pain or known heart disease should go to the nearest hospital for evaluation of the pain.