What is Sternal Notch? - Definition, Location, Pain

The suprasternal notch is an apparent dip that can be seen between the neck and clavicles, as well as above the sternum's manubrium. It is at the T2 & T3 vertebral levels. In adulthood, the trachea rests directly behind it and rises around 5 cm above it. This notch can be found by placing your fingers on the top of the shoulder blades and bringing them together until they meet in the center, where you will locate the Sternal Notch. This structure is frequently used to help find neighboring structures, such as particular arteries and veins. In addition, the Sternal Notch can be palpated as part of a physical examination to detect anomalies in this region or surrounding structures.

Sternal Notch Definition

The deep depression in the neck that can be seen between the clavicles and above the manubrium of the sternum is referred to as the suprasternal notch. It is also known by other names e.g. jugular notch, Plender gap, etc.

Sternal Notch Location

When assessing a patient, the position of the sternal notch is an essential reference point for medical experts. This notch is located in the body's midline, midway between the clavicles or collarbones. It designates the spot where these two bones meet, creating an indentation in which medical professionals can run tests like measuring the thoracic distance and examining the patient's pulse rate and respiratory rhythm. The position of the sternal notch is another factor that can be considered when determining whether or not a person's collarbone region has been affected by fractures or other types of deformations.

Sternal Notch Pain

Pain in the sternal notch is a common symptom with multiple potential reasons. The sternal notch is the depression where the collarbones connect at the base of the neck. This region may experience severe or dull pain that radiates to the jaw, shoulders, or arms. Frequently, coughing, deep breathing, and lying down increase it.

What is Sternal Notch - Definition, Location, Pain

There are numerous potential causes of sternal notch discomfort. It could be the result of muscle strain or repetitive action, such as that caused by bad posture or extended sitting. It can also result from a localized injury, such as a fall or automobile accident. In rare instances, sternal notch discomfort may be the result of a problem with the bones, joints, or other nearby tissues. This might consist of arthritis, inflammation, or a benign tumor. It is essential to visit a doctor for diagnosis and treatment if the pain is severe or lingers for more than a few days.

Sternal Notch Lump

A protuberance or small area of swelling in the sternal notch can be detected when you palpate the region. The lump might be caused by a bone spur, an enlarged lymph node, infection, or even a lipoma. These are just some of the possible explanations. A lump in the sternal notch is typically benign and does not need to be treated. A doctor should be consulted if the lump is painful, red, or exhibits other symptoms as these might be signs of a more serious problem.

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