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Sore lft rib and sternum

I was diagnosed with Ra 18 months ago on mexthorate12.5mg weekly folic acid 10mg and now reduced down to 1mg prednisolone per day. In the last week the area under my left breast/rib cage and partially over to my right ribs is so sore and burning. When i take sharp breaths or cough there is pain I am probably making it worse as I am constantly pressing the area to see if it is still sore to touch and boy it is. It makes wearing a bra so uncomfortable and working at a desk all day does me no favours. I am not sure if this is related to my RA or whether it is something new not seeing consultant for another 4 months and trying to get through to the rheumy nurse is a painful excercise...... not sure what to do or if there is any other medication I can take? really fed up everyday living is becoming so unbearable just need help!!!

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I have had similar. It was diagnosed as costochrondritis. It was very painful and for me I was unable to breathe properly. I ended up in A&E as I thought I was having a heart attack. It does hurt to touch/push your ribs. For me it was another side effect of RD creeping around my body.

I hope you can get through to your rheumy department or nurse. They need to know what is going on. A four month wait is too long.

Thinking of you.



I have this too, costochrondritis was my diagnosis and when it flares the pain can be off the scale. I am on mtx, steroid, and hyxyxlorquine. But last time this flared up I could not move an inch for pain. I was told to increase my usual steroid dose to bring inflammation down and now my methx has just been increased so hopefully will keep this from flaring so much. Good luck.


Two things occur to me Costracondalitus or Shingles. 'Cos that burns like hell and really hurts. So my advice go to the GP it may be coincidence or down to the RA either way you need to know because shingles can be stopped if treated quickly and the RA meds might need amending or stopping.I hope your feeling better very soon , I've had both and to be honest not sure what hurt most. xx


I was so ill with this from mid-January , I sat up in my armchair through intermittent night spasms in dreadful pain during a 3 months period, after which I received the RA diagnosis in April that my youngest daughter [a Psoriatic Arthritis sufferer] suspected over 10 years ago!

I could not write, chop vegetables, raise my arms to shampoo/shower or manage to manoeuvre the stairs without resting every 3rd or 4th step, and descending was a nightmare! As a last resort, said daughter insisted on a Service 111 out-of-hours weekend appointment at my local NHS hospital when the on-call doctor upped the Co-codamol pain-killer from the over-the-counter strength and replaced Ibuprofen with Naproxen 250 mg.

After RA diagnosis in April, in my daughter's opinion [and that of her Rheumy nurse in the next county] I was taken off Prednisolone too soon, starting to 'flare' within 48 hours, so I was re-started from scratch with 15 mg daily, reducing weekly to 7.5 mg daily for the last 5 weeks, and from this week I am on 5 mg until advised otherwise.

If you 'Google' make sure you use the correct spelling COSTOCHONDRITIS which will lead to a very informative NHS Choices page.

My GP had dismissed my symptoms in a January telephone consultation, but a Junior Doctor and a Trainee subsequently 'listened' and pulled out all the stops for me, for which I am deeply grateful.

Good luck!

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