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Date of last update: 8/21/2017.

Forum Name: Rheumatology Topics

Question: ouch

 shomuac - Mon Mar 24, 2003 4:44 pm

hi, just wondering if it's necessary to go see a doctor when i'v got a sharp pain just slighty left of my sternum occasionally. it just happens at random times, the longest period it lasted so far was last week. can only feel the pain when i inhale deeply or when i laugh. i would describe the pain as 'something poking me'. please advise. thanks!
 Dr. Safaa Mahmoud - Tue Mar 25, 2003 4:01 pm

User avatar dear shomuac ;
the type of pain you described is almost typical for a condition called Pleurisy or pleuritis, which is an inflammation of the pleura(double-layered membrane that surrounds the lungs and lines the thoracic rib cage). this type of inflamation is most commonly due to viral infections which usualy subsides spontaousley after short period of time and needs only supportive or symptomatic treament like analgesics antinflamatories for the pain. typically it is sharp pain that is on the side of the the infalmed pleura, increased with deep breath, coughing, sneezing, moving or even talking. sometimes it is severe enough to stop the breathing leading to shallow breath. you should consult your doctor to find out the exact underlying cause. careful history and examination , also an Xray chest to role out an underlying lung infection that neccesitate antibiotic use to eradicate the infection properly you also should visit your doctor once you have fever whatever slight it is.
hope to hear from you
 Anonymous - Tue Mar 25, 2003 5:00 pm

thanks :) thing is, i'm studying overseas n i don't really want to spend that money if it's not a big deal. i'll probably get it checked out when i'm back in my home country at the end of the year.
i actually had an Xray of my lungs taken just 2 months ago for visa purposes, n the doc said it was healthy. i'v had this random pains since last year.

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