What Is Xiphoid Process?
If you are experiencing pain and discomfort in the lowest portion of your sternum or the bone that connects to the ribcage, then you must be experiencing xiphoid process syndrome. For non-medical practitioners or somebody who is not so familiar with medical terms, surely you must be wondering what is xiphoid process pain because it is a condition that is not so common and since its symptoms are intermittent and are associated with other health conditions such as gallbladder, bone, and heart diseases. This explains why all the more pain in the xiphoid process and its other signs are overshadowed and most commonly mistaken for the aforementioned conditions. Usually, it is only after thorough medical examinations that the xiphoid syndrome is confirmed.
Causes of Pain in Xiphoid Process
There are varied factors concerning pain in xiphoid process. Generally, xiphoid pain is triggered by harmless activities such as lifting heavy objects or bending and even large meals can start pain attack or xiphoid process. Diseases, medical conditions, medication to certain drugs, and toxins are also among the common causes of pain in xiphoid process.
Signs and Symptoms of Xiphoid Process Pain
The most common symptoms of xiphoid process pain include:
- Chest tenderness
- Chest discomfort
- Shoulder tenderness
- Shoulder discomfort
- Back tenderness
- Back discomfort
- Epigastric tenderness
- Epigastric discomfort
- Chest pain
- Back pain
- Shoulder pain
Treatment and Management of Xiphoid Process Pain and Tenderness
If you are experiencing the symptoms of xiphoid process pain, consult your physician immediately.Usually, cases like these are managed by conducting lab tests such as x-ray then the treatment will start based on the x-ray result. Analgesics are usually given. Hot or cold treatment and an elastic rib belt are also recommended. To avoid getting xiphoid process pain, avoid lifting heavy objects especially if you have a history of the syndrome.