Posted 14 November 2008 - 06:18 AM
Last month I developed a sharp pain on the middle right side of my rib cage. It came on out of no where. I woke up one morning and there it was, this sharp pain where it even hurt to breathe normally. I thought, now what? I don't want to feel like a hypochondriac but sometimes it's hard not to worry. I thought at least it's not on my left side, because that could be a bad sign for sure. Because I was preparing for a special occasion I ignored it thinking my rheumatologist's appointment is right around the corner anyway. After a few days, the pain leveled off, came back and went away. Boy, was I relieved!
To make a long story short, at my rheumatologist's appointment I mentioned this sharp pain to her and she knew right away what it was. She said it was costochondritis, an inflammation of the cartilage where the rib connects to the sternum. It's normal and usually goes away when the inflammation settles down. She said if it came back to take motrin. I am so glad I didn't stay up nights worrying about this!
I also asked about my SCL 70 and ANA scores because I never knew them and wanted to be part of this club where everyone knows their scores. My SCL 70 back in 2001 was 161.8, normal is < 20 and my ANA is 1:2,560, normal is < 1:80. I asked what did those scores determine. She said the SCL 70, whether positive or negative is not used to confirm a diagnosis of scleroderma, the figure determines the degree or how affected one is. The purpose of the ANA is to see how many times a blood sample can be divided with normal being < 1:80. My ANA is or was skyhigh. I think I should win an ANA trophy of some sort! I thought I'd pass along that information.
The best part of all, is when I came home, I wanted to search "costochondritis" on this website, and sure enough it was here! I just know I'm never misinformed when I come here! Shelley and all the ISN volunteers, Thank you all for keeping this website uptodate and accurate!
Posted 14 November 2008 - 08:17 AM
Hope you can get some relief!
Posted 14 November 2008 - 08:25 AM
Posted 14 November 2008 - 10:09 AM
Posted 14 November 2008 - 10:56 AM
Gareth also had that for quite some time when the sclero first started. It was very painful for him to take a deep breath.
Take care, Everyone.
Posted 14 November 2008 - 12:47 PM
You're not kidding when you say Ewwww! I knew this pain was different than before because I couldn't breath on one side and it really hurt. Thank goodness it wore off and I'm feeling better.
I'm sorry to hear you have something similar though I'm not sure if it's the same condition. Does NSAID's and a heating pad help? It does sound like you can experience this type of pain long before an official diagnosis is made.
I can relate to the sprained ankle feeling. Not a good feeling at that. Thanks for the analogy! I like when doctors explain things in a way we can relate to.
I now know what Gareth went through. I am so glad he doesn't have that symptom any more.
Thanks everyone for your support! I do feel much better now!
Posted 14 November 2008 - 01:38 PM
Thanks for sharing that with us. I'll file the info in my 'medical' folder.
Posted 14 November 2008 - 05:39 PM
What a timely post. I also have experienced that stabbing pain just yesterday - out of nowhere, while just sitting. Hasn't come back, knock wood.
I also wanted to ask you if you had read anything on the interpretations of the scl-70. Mine was 168 and judging by the normal range, that seemed pretty high but I was led to believe the opposite of you in that a higher positive didn't necessairly mean more involvement or more rapid progression on the way. And that the scl-70 is actually a specific indicator of diffuse sclero.
Anyway, I have looked around online and can't find anything in writing on the subject. Just wanted to know if you and/or your doctor had any suggested reading material?
Posted 14 November 2008 - 06:10 PM
I'm going to add this one to my folder too!
(Hope you're keeping warm from those northernly Indiana winds.)
Your Illinois neighbor,
I am feeling better and plan on staying close to home for a while. No strenuous activities in sight for me. I'm sorry to hear you've been dealing with this pain and I'm wishing you a rapid and speedy recovery.
Posted 14 November 2008 - 06:18 PM
Posted 14 November 2008 - 07:31 PM
These sharp pains can be finicky. I'm so glad when they're gone.
I've also searched the internet for information on interpreting SCL 70 and ANA readings and didn't find anything. My doctor did say the SCL 70 determines the degree, but did not mention whether that means more involvement or more rapid progression. I would have to call her next week and get a more definitive explanation on whether doctors ever interpret this reading as an indicator of diffuse scleroderma. Hopefully my doctor can direct me to a website or fax me information from her medical manuals. She's real nice and won't mind my asking. Good questions Barefut!
Thanks for the ANA information. It's a relief to know a high number doesn't make a difference. I'm glad you explained it so clearly.
Posted 15 November 2008 - 09:42 AM
I wanted to comment on the ANA # too. A couple years ago my ANA was also 1:2560 and I felt better and was able to start hiking again but now my ANA is 1:320 yet I can barely even walk across the room. So in other words the ANA doesn't seem to mean much of anything.
Posted 15 November 2008 - 01:09 PM
They can't diagnose with just the positive test and GI problems; which is pretty much all I have right now among some minor things that could be due to anything according to my doctor.
The plan is to be retested again in 3 months and watch out for any other symptoms. It is horrible, as I find myself looking at my fingers all the time to see if Raynaud's kicks in. I was told some people can have positive ANA and never develop an autoimmune disease. Probably a very very small percentage but it can happen.
Razz, I am glad that you are feeling better and that it was actually something that you could fix with a pill or two...
Posted 15 November 2008 - 03:56 PM
Hope you feel better!
I was at my doctor thursday and I ask here about my ana. I have been dxed with diffuse and I have a negative scl-70 but a high " off the charts ana". I have heard different things about the scl-70. We spoke of the Scot Program with the stem cell or chemo. It has been 4 months since she checked my lungs, so she is retesting them.
Posted 16 November 2008 - 05:56 AM
I would like to get a better clarification on the question of ANA testing, as well as scl 70's. Sorry to hear your hiking has been put on the back burner. I hope you see some improvement and feel better soon.
I think we need a better understanding of what the purpose of these tests are and how to interpret them. My chest pain has gone away and I do feel much better. Thanks aka79.
Definitely keep us posted on how your lung function testing goes. I hope they stay at a high percentage of function ability.
Posted 16 November 2008 - 06:12 PM
Sorry to hear you have been so ill but am glad you are feeling better now. I have heard it is quite a painful thing to have. Will keep you in my thoughts.
As for ANA's there has been no specific pattern with mine. They are either positive or negative and no in between. Take care razz.
With gentle thoughts.
Posted 17 November 2008 - 08:44 AM
I've gotten that within the last month. I attributed it to an allergic cough and the dry heaves from IBS. I thought I just strained my chest muscles! I could barely breathe. I tried a heating pad which made things worse, then ice packs. The ice packs worked wonders!
It is what it is...........
Posted 17 November 2008 - 05:41 PM
Thanks for your kind words of support.
I also thought it was a strain or maybe I bruised myself, and I couldn't figure out why it affected my breathing. I'm glad you found something that worked!