Precordial Catch Syndrome: Symptoms, Cause, and Treatments

The chest cavity contains the heart and the lungs. These are critical organs that are essential for human survival.

When problems develop with the chest cavity, these two organs may be harmed in the process. Some conditions can cause symptoms without leading to severe problems. Precordial catch syndrome is one of these conditions. 

In this post, we look at what precordial catch syndrome is. We also consider the symptoms and possible causes behind the condition. The post also examines current treatment for the condition. 

What Is Precordial Catch Syndrome?

Precordial catch syndrome is a condition that affects the chest cavity. In particular, the nerves that surround the chest cavity are affected by the syndrome. It is most common in the younger population. The condition is sometimes called a Texidor’s Twinge. 

Research shows that precordial catch syndrome is a prevalent condition. At the same time, researchers also explain that it is an underrecognized condition. It is often the reason for benign chest pain to develop in children and adolescent patients. 

At the moment, researchers are still looking to identify more details related to the pathophysiology of precordial catch syndrome. The pathophysiology of the condition is currently considered unknown. 

Most patients affected by the condition are between the ages of six and 12. It affects boys and girls equally. 

What Are The Symptoms?

Since researchers consider the condition underrated, people must be aware of the symptoms. The symptoms interlink with signs associated with other conditions, including some heart diseases

In most patients, the pain comes on suddenly. Some people also find that the pain is sharp. The origin of the pain symptoms will be unknown. The location of the pain is generally at the cardiac apex. 

Most patients explain that the symptoms develop at a rested state. In some cases, there is an onset of the symptoms during mild physical activity

Shallow breathing has been reported among patients with precordial catch syndrome. This is generally a reaction to reduce the pain sensation. 

The duration of the episodes varies from one event to the next, as well as between patients. Sometimes, the pain will only last for about 30 seconds. There are cases where the pain may remain present for up to three minutes. Rare instances in which the pain lasted for as long as 30 minutes have been recorded in the past. 

What Causes It?

Researchers are still looking at potential causes related to the development of precordial catch syndrome. At the moment, little is known about the causes behind the condition. 

It is important to note that lung and heart problems do not cause precordial catch syndrome. It has been suggested that irritation in the nerves that are found close to the lung may be a cause. These nerves are known as the pleura. The pain is not always present at this location. It may also radiate from the cartilage or even the ribs. 

With irritation being a possible cause, injuries and a poor posture may contribute to the condition. A blow that hits directly onto the patient’s chest may also be to blame. Some researchers suggest that a growth spurt might also cause these nerves to become irritated. Once irritated, signs of precordial catch syndrome could develop. 

How Is It Diagnosed?

When a patient presents with sharp stabbing pains in their chest, a physical examination is usually the first step. The doctor will begin by ruling out more serious causes of chest pain. The patient may be tested for heart disease, asthma, and problems with their lungs.

Precordial catch syndrome is a non-serious condition. Therefore, most of the time a doctor will not need to do any tests in order to diagnose it.


There are no serious physiological complications associated with precordial catch syndrome. The condition does not lead to heart problems. Precordial pain is generally associated with an irritated or pinched nerve. Still, sharp chest pain can be alarming. 

The constant fear of chest pain complaints in the breastbone, ribs, or chest cavity can lead to anxiety. This has been observed in patients, including young children. Muscle soreness may also occur in some people. 

How Is It Treated?

There is no specific treatment developed for precordial catch syndrome. Patients are generally advised on ways that can help with the symptoms that occur during episodes. 

The doctor may advise the patient to use a pain reliever to help with the chest pain symptoms. This may include the use of a drug like ibuprofen. The drug can also help to relieve any inflammation

The patient may also be advised to perform deep breathing exercises. During an episode, slow and gentle breathing may help to alleviate the pain faster. 

The patient’s posture may be analyzed in some cases. They may be advised to sit up with a better posture. Adopting an improved posture can sometimes help to reduce the frequency and severity of episodes when they occur. Thus, the patient should make it a habit to form a better posture when they sit, lie down, and when they stand up. 

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Precordial catch syndrome is a condition that mostly affects adolescents. A child’s chest pain may often also be caused by this condition. The chest nerves are affected by the condition.

It can cause unexplained chest pain. Even though the chest pain may be alarming, it is not considered a serious condition. A pediatric cardiologist will provide adequate treatment for children with this condition, while a general practitioner can be consulted for adolescents and adults. 


  1. Physiopedia. Precordial Catch Syndrome. [online] Available at:
  2. Southern Medical Journal. (2003) Precordial Catch Syndrome. [online] Available at:

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