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Date of last update: 10/01/2017.

Forum Name: Bone trauma and fractures

Question: I have this pain to the left side of the middle of my ribs

 whiteboien3rgie - Tue Apr 28, 2009 11:37 am

At about this point


It feels like a cramp but can also feel kinda like a stabbing pain also, sometimes it hurts alot after i smoke dope

Breathing deep can hurt, sometimes it doesn't, i have trouble laying down sometimes

What is this pain, lung, muscle strain, a broken rib??

Help please
 Tom Plamondon PA-C - Sun May 03, 2009 9:58 pm

User avatar Hello,
Thanks for the picture!
Without trauma, rib fracture is unlikely.
At 18 y.o., cardiac issues are unlikely unless there is a history of heart defect at birth or you are an athlete with an enlarged heart.
Sometimes heavy repetitive lifting or pushing/pulling can cause inflammation in this area.
The more likely suspicion is the fact that you have a history of asthma and are smoking - a bad combination for the lungs.
Try not smoking for 1-2 weeks. Increase water intake (good expectorant). Take albuterol inhaler per your family physicians orders.
If no better or worse within 1-2 weeks follow up with a physician.

You may consider seeing your physician now for an exact diagnosis as a face to face history and physical may shed more light on the problem.

Take care.
 breathingpain - Sat May 30, 2009 12:25 pm

I went to the er yesterday and had xrays taken. The doctor told me that all looked and sounded good. The pain happens when I breath deeply, on the left side in my ribs and back from my collar bone. It can be so bad that I feel like I'm going to vomit. I've tried biofreeze. thinking it might be an inflamed muscle, that didn't work. I've tried a back support, which worked for a little while, but when I took it off the pain brought me to my knees. Which is'nt exactly possible since I have a broken lower left leg. I take hydrocodon and percacet for my broken leg but they don't do much for the breathing pain. One doctor perscribed steroids but I don't know wether it is worth taking dou to the side effects. PLEASE HELP ME I'M MISSERABLE

 Tom Plamondon PA-C - Thu Jun 04, 2009 4:04 pm

User avatar Hello,
I suppose the prescription for the corticosteroids is to reduce the inflammation of the rib cage area - either muscles between the ribs or the lining of the thoracic wall (pleurisy).

I see the steroids as a reasonable option since the pain meds for the leg fracture do not help with the chest problem.

Generally, corticosteroids orally only help with musculoskeletal inflammation briefly but with internal tissue like lung and inner lining of the chest cavity does a better job.

Unless you have had an adverse reaction to steroids in the past they are generally safe for short term use (less than 3 weeks).

From your story, it sounds like you were in an accident which resulted in broken leg bone and left sided chest / clavicle injury.

There is a host of bone and joint problems in the shoulder and clavicle area which could have resulted from the trauma and can best be sorted out through your family doctor ...or with referral to orthopedist.

Thanks for writing in. Let us know how it goes.

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