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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct. 12, 2009
    east Tennessee

    Default Old broken rib won't stop hurting

    I fractured a rib on my left side in December 2008. It was extremely painful, and because there was nothing they could do to set the bones, my left ribs are a little more "sprung" than my right. After the first three months, the pain lessened quite a bit. I would still have twinges of pain if I lifted something too heavy or if I twisted in an odd way; but for the most part, I felt healed. Very rarely, it would feel like something around my ribs was "catching," almost as if I was having a sidestitch. If I stretched out my arm, it would go away.

    In April of this year, I was bucked off my horse. I had xrays done on my shoulder because that's what hurt, and I did mention my old rib injury. Long story short, I've started having regular pain of the sidestitch variety on that side of my ribs. I've got a call in to my doctor to get an appointment, but I'm wondering if anyone else has had broken ribs that won't seem to heal or that still give them trouble. Any advice? Any insight?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr. 13, 2006

    Default several options come to mind..........

    Could be a compensation coming down from or result of the injured shoulder

    Ribs usually heel well but because it no longer moves in unison with its neighbors, you will get the popping, catching etc..

    Could be "non-union" with either a gap between the bone ends or cartilage union.....

    They are the big ones to consider.....the time frame kinda rules out internal pathology, but don't want to miss one.

    And unfortunately, sometimes they just become pain generators which can sometimes be addressed by surgery.

    Medical Mike
    equestrian medical researcher

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