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    If You Randomly Experience Chest Pain In Your Left Breast, This Could Be Why

    "That pain in your left boob you randomly get."

    Have you ever experienced a short (but sharp!) random pain in your chest and wondered, What the heck is that?!

    CBS

    In a recent viral TikTok, @hope.dx made a video highlighting a sharp, random pain that sometimes occurs in the chest area, specifically in the left boob.

    But people in the comments all expressed the same sentiment: 1) Glad I'm not alone! and 2) WTF is it, then????

    In a different viral TikTok, Lauren (@chaoskenobi) explained that her doctor said the pain might be pleurisy, which occurs when the thin tissue that separates your lungs from your chest wall becomes inflamed. It causes that sharp, painful sensation in the chest that worsens when you take a deep breath.

    @chaoskenobi

    #stitch with @hope.dx Speaking about pleurisy! Please help spread the word as I have a very tiny following! #health #pain #womenshealth #FYP

    ♬ original sound - ChaosKenobi

    In response to her video, commenters said it could also be something called precordial catch syndrome, which is described as a sharp stabbing pain in the chest that lasts only briefly, usually occurring around the left nipple. The pain may worsen if the person experiencing the pain takes deep breaths.

    @chaoskenobi

    Anything I’ve spoken about can happen to any human not just female presenting ones! #precordialcatchsyndrome #health #FYP #MACscaraface

    ♬ original sound - ChaosKenobi

    When BuzzFeed reached out to Lauren, she clarified a few things from her original video. "There’s three or four conditions that match the symptoms I was describing, so it’s important for people to not self-diagnose and [to] speak with a doctor, because not all the conditions are non-life-threatening," she stated. "I’m shocked how many people even have these symptoms, and now that I know, I’m even more shocked that all my doctors had no idea what it could be. I’m just glad that people now have a better vocabulary to present to their doctors to advocate for themselves."

    Lauren speaking

    We also reached out to experts in the field to further understand this issue. Fahimeh Sasan, MD, FACOG, a board-certified OB-GYN and founding physician and chief medical officer of OB-GYN at Kindbody, spoke to BuzzFeed about this health concern. "It is imperative that if a woman is having recurring breast pain of any kind that she see her gynecologist and have a breast exam," she explained. "Based on her exam and family history, her physician may further recommend breast imaging, such as breast ultrasound and/or mammogram. About 1 in 8 US women (about 13%) will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime. As such, breast pain, masses, and lumps should never be ignored or presumed to be musculoskeletal or a 'phenomenon' until [a] full evaluation is done by a provider."

    Woman pressing her hand to her chest
    Teeramet Thanomkiat / Getty Images / EyeEm

    Mary Jane Minkin, MD, a clinical professor of OB-GYN at Yale University, shared her insights as well. "I don't think one can give a definitive answer," Minkin stated. "The pain she describes is certainly what we call pleuritic — i.e., it gets worse when you take a deep breath. And it actually can occur anywhere in the chest."

    Pulmonology vector illustration about restrictive lung disease showing pleurisy, a condition in which the pleura that separates lungs from chest wall becomes inflamed
    Sci_indy / Getty Images / iStockphoto

    "In general, true pleurisy is an inflammation of the lining of the chest cavity — the pleura — and isn't self-limited (it doesn't go away with one painful breath," Minkin continued. "The other possibility to account for that type of pain is something called costochondritis, which is basically rib inflammation. When you press on the rib, it hurts. (It scares many women because they think it is actually breast pain!) All I can tell you is that it is pretty common. What I tell my patients, if it is very self-limited (like it lasts for one or two breaths), don't worry about it. If it persists, that evaluation should be done."

    So to recap, if you are like the people on TikTok and notice that you randomly experience chest pain, specifically in or around your left breast, you are not alone! And it could be due to a number of different things (such as pleurisy or costochondritis). But, as always, it's a good idea to bring it up to your doctor, especially if this pain persists.

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