Have you ever felt a quick, sharp pain in your left chest? A pain that comes quickly but disappears just as quickly? You are not alone, so we decided to investigate the possible reasons for this.
Here are four possible causes for this mysterious pain.
pleurisy is a condition that causes sharp, stabbing pain under the chest, which can be made worse by taking deep breaths. Pleurisy is caused by inflammation of the thin membranes that surround the outside of your lungs and the inside of your chest cavity called the pleura. When these membranes become inflamed (usually due to a viral or bacterial infection) they can rub against each other, causing the sharp pain you feel. Pleurisy itself is usually not serious and usually goes away on its own, but it can be symptomatic of other more serious conditions and illnesses so this should be discussed with your doctor.
Precordial catch syndrome
Precordial catch syndrome causes severe, sharp, knife-like pain under the left chest area, often just under the left nipple. As with pleurisy, breathing can also make it worse, and you may find that you breathe very shallowly to avoid worsening the pain. While the pain itself is intense, precordial trapping syndrome is harmless and its exact causes are unknown. It has nothing to do with the heart and lungs and will go away on its own over time. This condition occurs primarily in children, adolescents, and young adults, but can also be found in older adults. Although it can be painful, precordial trapping syndrome is nothing to worry about.
Pericarditis is the result of inflammation of the pericardium, which is basically a sac that surrounds your heart to hold it in place and help it function. If the pericardial membranes become inflamed, it can cause chest pain, especially under the left breast. It can feel like a sharp pain in your heart or under your sternum. While it is most commonly found in people assigned to be male at birth, it can also be found in people assigned to be female at birth. The exact cause is not often known, but it can be the result of a viral infection. Pericarditis is usually harmless and goes away on its own over time, but in rare cases it can cause serious complications and become chronic.
Costochondritis is another form of inflammation, this time of the cartilage where the ribs go into the sternum. It is actually a musculoskeletal pain that is not coming from your chest at all, but because of its location, the pain may appear to be coming from your chest. Like most of these other conditions, it will usually go away on its own, but it can take several weeks or more. The pain can be treated with medication or physical therapy, but if you suspect you may have the condition it is important to speak to your doctor to find out and he or she can determine the best treatment for you.
Because of the way your body is built and where your internal organs are located, the left side of the body is often more affected by some of these conditions than the right. While fleeting left chest pain is usually not a cause for concern, it can rarely indicate something serious. Because of this, it’s always a good idea to speak to your doctor to rule out any health issues that may need treatment.
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