Caution: if you have chest pain, have an EKG done to rule out any heart problems.
Disclaimer: I am not a doctor. Please, seek professional medical advice if you are experiencing chest pain.
This is a modified version of my posting at sensored://ehealthforum.com/health/topic4094.html
(more stories about chest cracking)
My chest started cracking after I started lifting heavy weights. Couldn't sleep on my side, because my chest would hurt. I would occassionally crack my chest myself after a tough workout. I discovered it cracked one day while I was stretching. Now the cracking happens unintentionally when I make some movement that stretches my chest.
I used to workout often. I'm a female in my 30s, small frame, weighing less than 100lbs. I consider myself to be in pretty good shape; I used to jog and could do 50 push-ups easily. (I can't do any pushups now though.) During my workouts, I noticed that doing dips (26) my sternum would hurt quite a bit. My sternum would also hurt during chest presses (swimmers press, etc.) and push-ups. Anyway, the pain gets to be so bad that it keeps me up at night. Now, I'm in pain 24 hours a day. The doctor diagnosed me with costochondritis: inflammation of the costal cartilage. It's fairly simple to diagnose, once you rule out heart problems: palpation of the area reveals tenderness--that is, if it hurts to press your sternum anywhere between the 3rd and 6th ribs (middle of your chest), and you have the most common symptoms (hurts when you take a deep breath or cough, there is cracking of the chest), then it is very likely that you have costochondritis. I had an EKG done first, of course. Mine was normal. All my other vitals are excellent.
Symptoms: may seem similar to GERD or myocardial infarction (heart attack). The pain starts as sharp and stabbing, and may radiate (usually towards the left area of your chest). Sometimes, just sitting at my computer I would feel a sharp shooting pain up the left side of my chest. Often, when the pain radiates it feels like a bubbling (fizzing) throughout my chest. While I'm hopped up on ibuprofen, the pain feels more like a tightness in the middle of chest. When the pain flares up, it can cover my entire chest. It never really goes away; I have varying degrees of pain.
Posted By LadyOscar on January 13, 2005 at 19:04:23: