Bruised Sternum 

A bruised sternum indicates you have suffered a traumatic injury recently or have been exposed to outside impact causing your sternum injury. The sternum refers to the flattened bone, the breast bone lodged between the chest and organs. It consists of the heart, lungs and protects the ribs and the shoulder bones. Bruised sternum is an injury affecting the breast bone on your lungs.

Causes of Bruised Sternum

  • The car accidents when drivers ignore wearing seat belts while driving is one of the serious causes to injure the breast bone.
  • People participating in sport activities without protective chest gear also result in bruised sternum.
  • Bruised sternum is apparent in people suffering from hacking coughs that are forceful and violent.

Symptoms of Bruised Sternum

A bruised sternum causes swelling, pain in movement, tenderness, prolonged chest pain; sharp pain while coughing or laughing, hurts on breathing and bruising. Taking small breaths reduces the pain. Bigger problem cause serious problems such as shallow breathing and this cannot be ignored. It is a must to take immediate treatment in serious cases to determine if your breastbone has sternum fracture.


The recovery time for a bruised sternum is 4-6 weeks. It completely heals in this time if it less traumatic. The bruised sternum causes the chest area experience difficulties in twisting or moving, especially when one takes deep breaths. However, it is a must to breathe freely and to take the pain holding it such that it results in the healing process. In case the problem continues for a longer period, seek the assistance of a physician.

Anti-inflammatory drugs that are nonsteriodal are given to cure the problems of inflammation and pain. The patients are given the nonsteriodal anti-inflammatory drugs based on the injury severity. The other medicines include naproxen, ibuprofen, flurbiprofen, ketoprofen and fenoprofen. The drugs are recommended to reduce the injury inflicted.