Tietzes syndrome

by Kim

Tietzes syndrome

I first noticed my collar bone was swollen 8 months ago, following a bout of tonsilitis; I had antibiotics for this which made me violently sick. I don't have any severe chest pain, but in the past I have experienced stabbing pain in the middle of my chest when rolling onto my side. I currently have a lot of upper back and shoulder pain; it's more of an achy discomfort.

I've had blood tests and an xray which hasn't shown anything. I have been told to take ibuprofen, which I haven't used. The swelling hasn't gone any bigger or smaller.

Hello Kim,
Always, when associated with an infection, as you had in the tonsils, the differential is whether it's a swollen lymph node or not. It doesn't appear to be, and your blood tests were negative.

Is the nodule tender, and if you run your fingers down the joints between the ribs and sternum, are any painful, usually on one side only.

Do you have any tingling in the arm? The brachial plexus of nerves to the arm pass right under the collarbone. Also that swelling may affect the other end of the collar bone, at the shoulder, affecting your shoulder rhythm.

A bone scan might show the swelling. I certainly think it looks like Tietzes syndrome.

It's difficult, Kim. There's no proven treatment; after years of struggling with patients with the problem, I've worked out a protocol that's quite successful, but still I can't claim it's proven.

If you'd like to see a local chiropractor, and he or she is willing to talk to me, we could skype and discuss your case and hopefully take you forwards.

One small warning; a hard manipulation in the midback may aggravate this problem.

Let me know how you get on.

Dr B

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