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Front of Chest Pain Sternomanubrial Joint Pain

  • The articulation between the manubrium and the sternal body in the front of you chest
  • Located at the sternal angle/ front of chest, at the 2nd rib cartilage and the disc space vertebral level of the spine for T4 and T5
  • The joint is covered by hyaline cartilage but does not have any ligament attachments.
  • Function: aids in a small amount of angular movement during respiration

​Pain in the sternomanubrial joint can be the source of musculoskeletal pain and can often mimic pain of cardiac origin.

Sternomanubrial joint (front of the chest joint) can be injured by direct trauma to the joint, excessive coughing, recent history of strenuous activity. Further this joint is often susceptible to inflammatory conditions such as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, reactive arthritis and psoriatic arthritis.

Overuse or misuse can cause inflammation at the joint and can be recreated with movement of the shoulder/s, deep inspiration, shrugging the shoulders and/or full elevation of the arms. The sternomanubrial joint may also be tender to touch, can be hot or swollen if acutely inflamed and patients can report a clicking sensation with movement of the joint.

Activities that should be limited due to chest pain include bending forward excessively, holding onto heavy shopping bags, excessive cold temperatures, excessive sloughing and poor posture, coughing, and chest strengthening exercises; such as bench presses.

Treatment options available at Lakeside Chiropractic for this anterior chest wall pain includes mobilisations, adjustments to thoracic spine, cold laser treatment therapy, soft tissue therapy and it is recommended to follow relative rest and acutely apply heat to the area and stretch to a point of tension not pain;

Pec stretch

Hold stretch for 30 seconds, 3 times per day

Brugger’s exercise

Perform exercises once or twice for every 20-30 minutes of prolonged sitting; exercise is held for 30-60 seconds

Lakeside Chiropractic is located in Joondalup local to the northern suburbs of Perth. Surrounding suburbs include Currambine, Iluka, Connolly, Ocean Reef, Whitfords, Hillarys, Kinross, Tapping, Carramar, Banksia Grove. Please come and see our friendly chiropractors to help you on your road to recovery. We accept all major health care insurances, with HICAPS facilities available onsite for HIF, HBF, SGIO and many more. Apart of the BUPA Members First Network and a Medibank preferred practitioner. If you have a questions or would like to make an appointment, you can contact us on 9300 0095, or visit our website

July 05, 2019