Could my Chest discomfort be caused by Costochondritis?

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Submitted by Dr T on June 28, 2011 – 9:12am

I’m a 44 year old male, mildly overweight, and have hypertension. I am treated for hypertension and take very small dose of Plendil (5mg) daily which generally keeps my blood pressure at around 125/80 (pulse around 70). For years, I’ve had chest discomfort that will come and go but over the last few weeks it’s been pretty steady and to be honest it’s really starting to scare me (making it difficult to sleep due to anxiety more than pain).
The pain is on my left side and specifically on the left breast. It is tender to the touch and feels like it is in the ribs. Pushing my fingers in on the bottom right of my left breast is where it is most notable. I work a sedentary computer job and lately have been at the desk and the computer quite a bit due to work (10 hours a day on average). I don’t have enough history of observing if this increased time at the desk is a factor but if I was to guess I would think it is.
My question is do you think this sounds like Costochondritis or something muscular? My real desire is to help confirm that this isn’t something more serious and how to distinguish this type of discomfort from true cardiac pain.
Is the fact that it is tender to the touch and lasts for days a good sign that it isn’t cardiac pain? Is the fact that my blood pressure and pulse are within normal ranges also a good sign? My left breast also seems larger to me then my right so I expect that it is swelling (no redness or anything like that though). Is that also a good sign?
If you can share anything on how to easily rule out that it isn’t a sign of cardiac pain and a week long heart attack in the building, I would be extremely grateful. One last thing: I did visit my family doctor and he prescribed some anti-inflammatory medication to take for a week and felt positive but I would really like a second opinion. Naturally I didn’t have all of my questions organized at the time so hopefully I’ve done better this time. Thank you for your time. Any news will be good news.

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