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Which medical expert would deal with trauma/injury to thoracic area.

Question: Which medical expert would deal with trauma/injury to thoracic area.

I have always played sport throughout my life - tennis, football, skating, ice hockey. I am now in my late 50s and have had lower back problems (degenerative discs) for a number of years.

In April 2007 I did a big stretch and sustained severe chest pains. Since this time I have had extensive investigations and scans of main organs but nothing conclusive has been found. This has included angiogram, lung function tests, endoscopes - to name a few!

The pain is accross my chest and moves down to upper abdomen area, around diaphragm. I believe that the injury/trauma I sustained from the stretch could be likened to a sports injury that someone would sustain from a warm up stretch. I maybe have caused damage or tear to chest wall/diaphragm area. The pain can ease slightly at times but always returns and it is difficult to pin point what makes it worse. How can this be detected/diagnosed? In terms of clinicians/Consultants which route should I be referred to?

Answer:

This sounds like a thoracic herniation although you have not indicated upper to middle back pain. Compressed nerves in the thoracic spine cause lots of pain in the rib and chest area. In my own case, I thought I was having a heart attack and it was diagnosed as a herniation of T7- T8. 6 months of treatment and I am still not much better.