Medical Questions > Conditions and Diseases > Cold, Flu and Viral Infections Forum

Pulled Muscle Behind Rib? (Page 1)

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I have been sick since thanksgiving. It is now the middle of january and still cannot get over the cough.
Two weeks ago I noticed that my rib cage hurt when I took a deep breath. A couple of days later I realized it wasn't my rib cage, but the left side of my ribs, and it's localized. I can press on it and feel exactly where it hurts. It hurts to turn my torso, lay on that side, lay on my stomach, take a deep breath, yawn, run, etc. I have no idea, but a coworker suggested I may have pulled a muscle from coughing. Anyone with experience? Does it sound like this may be the cause of my pain/discomfort? And if so, what can I do to alleviate the pain?
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First Helper Buzz8808
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replied February 18th, 2008
I have the exact same thing! I was sick with a very bad cough for about a week and suddenly i had this pain on the left side of my abdomen and sometimes almost hurts in my back too. At first i thought it was gas because a friend of mine had the same symptoms a while back... but now i'm pretty sure it's a pulled muscle.
It sucks cause i'm not quite over my cough and it kills each time!
I'm not sure if we can do anything for the pain except take some IB profin or something. If it hurts when you dont move, i'd def. go to the doc.

I'm just trying to move my torso as little as possible and hope it heals up!
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replied March 21st, 2013
this is all happening to me as well....earlier I was coughing and I already have a pulled muscle and I was on my road to recovery and all of a sudden as I was coughing and I heard a very loud "pop" and it almost brought me to my knees....I am 40 years old with numerous health probs and it takes a lot to make me cry but omg this did. switching between heat and ice
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replied December 21st, 2008
A few hours ago I pulled this muscle you are talking. I have had a persistant cough since Dec 1st due to asthma. I've had two minor muscle pulls in my side under right under my ribcage, no trouble ever breathing. But the one today was much worse, it was agony - felt like a knife was being inserted and I cried everytime i moved. Its very difficult to sit up, to change positions sleeping...its exhausting since i was almost all better and now I have this senstive muscle pull. I hope it doesnt last long
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replied December 22nd, 2008
yup
I got mine from sneezing. dull constant pain. feel it mostly on expiration.
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replied January 20th, 2009
Argh
I was almost over nearly three weeks of bronchitis. Coughed in the night and heard/felt a pop in lower right back/side. So painful almost blacked out. XRays today, nothing broken, probably a torn muscle says MD. 500 MG Naproxin twice a day. I can feel popping/movement, so not sure how that fits diagnosis. Coughing is thankfully nearly done, but is VERY painful. In hell.
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replied November 17th, 2011
im in the same condition as u. i went to the doctors and i was told i had a cold im my ribs so they put me on this medicine 500 MG Naproxin. i have to take it twice a day. in the mornin i have to eat a bite of food and take a pill with 8 ozs. of water then walk for 30 mins. straight. same for the afternoon. it hurts on my left side as well, im 16 and im scared because if i dont get well they are going to have to get 8 shots in 8 different ribs with medicine
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replied March 9th, 2009
Hurts Bad
I have the same thing on my left side. I went to the doctor and had some xrays taken and luckly no broken ribs. Doctor said probably a pulled muscle. Doc gave me some Vicodin and some muscle relaxers. It helps but you cant go to work on the pills. My advice would be take a week off and relax on the couch. Only resting will fix it.
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replied April 8th, 2009
I have the same thing
I had a cough for about two weeks and all of a sudden I had a localized soft spot on my ribs and everytime i coughed or laughed it hurt and a Dr. told me that I pulled a muscle coughing and that it can take sometimes up to a month or two to actually heal, because we constantly are breathing so they are constantly moving and thus makes it take longer to heal- coughing doesnt make it any easier. sorry ...
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replied April 10th, 2009
In Agony Too
I had a bought of bronchitis for about three weeks which was accompanied with a persistent, hacking cough. Yesterday, I noticed a sharp stabbing pain on the left side of my ribcage; just under the pectoral area. Today I woke up and screamed because the pain was so intense; I couldn't even lift my left arm above my head, or lean back. I used a rub with some camphor (much like A535) and took some Ibuprofen. It has taken the edge off, but the sharp pain is still there. The MD told me it is a pulled muscle, and it will take a while for it to heal because of where the injury is. I hope that those of you that are in pain get better soon. The best of luck.
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replied November 8th, 2009
Since my last asthma flare up a few weeks ago, the dry cough and constant, starting hurting in my back. I knew I had pulled something; the pain is a 10+ from the constant cough. Use Advair and inhaler. Then last night felt that POP and thought I was being stepped on by an elephant. Pulled the same muscle, more severe. Very immobilized today. Heating pad; hydrocodone; muscle relaxer; cough suppressant. Rest is all I can think to do; do not aggravate the situation. Really painful...hardly able to get dressed. If you have something similar...just rest...that's all that seems to work, for today.
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replied November 15th, 2009
Oh, man. I pulled this muscle on Friday. Mine's under my right rib-cage, though. I was sick for a couple weeks, and was coughing a bit, but it was nothing any more severe than other coughs I've had. I guess I must've aggravated it somehow. I hope it goes away. I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one who's gone/is going through this.
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replied November 28th, 2009
The real deal. I actually had h1n1 and coughed so much I did in fact pull a muscle. It is everything you all explained. It started with a sharp pain in my chest. I thought maybe I cracked a rib and the jagged edge was stabbing me in the heart ( I know that sounds crazy but that is how much it hurt) I went to the doctor and he did some probing in the area and diagnosed me with a pulled muscle. I am now on anti imfammitory pills and sometimes they help and sometimes they don't. I have had this for over 2 weeks and it never seems to subside. Good luck everyone.
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replied December 4th, 2009
same story here...I had a cough going on a few weeks and woke up one day with sharp pain in my lower right ribcage. Got x-rayed and nothing was broken so its either torn cartilege or a pulled muscle. I'm in hell still having to cough and I just about passed out from the pain of sneezing so i'm learing to supress that urge. I have just been rotating ibuprofen and acetaminophen every 4-6 hours but its really not helping much and sleeping is nearly impossible -- anyone have any other drug recommendations or otherwise to help control the pain??
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replied December 4th, 2009
I was given anti inflammitory meds and I rotate those with vicadin. I can't work while taking vicadin so I take those when I'm off work. I returned to my doc after 2 weeks of the pure agony and he sent me for xrays...same story as most above...nothing broken, probably something torn. I am using a heating pad at night and that with the vicadin has made sleeping a little easier. It is so nice knowing that I am not going crazy and this pain really is as bad as you are all describing...it is hell. The sneezing and coughing make is so bad and even scary because of the pain. I hope you all feel better soon. This is no easy road we are all on.
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replied December 13th, 2009
pain in ribs when coughing
same thing going on in san diego; nothing to add, but i'm taking ibuprofen and it's nice to know i don't have a rib sticking in my heart like i first thought; it's good to know others are going through the same thing because my husband thinks i'm making it up; hang in there!
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replied December 21st, 2009
Seems poor DrRoscoe is suffering from ahole maximus.

But on the bright side, at least we will all get better. His condition is permanent.
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replied December 31st, 2009
SO MUCH PAIN
After having one of the worst chest colds/coughs of my life for two weeks, I felt something on my left side POP during a violent coughing fit. There is a bulge on my side that is SO PAINFUL to the slightest pressure that I practically black out, and whenever I move/breathe/cough it feels like someone is stabbing me in the side. I really hope that rest and pain meds can fix this.
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replied January 3rd, 2010
I am dying.... I have had bronchitis for the past 3 weeks and was finally feeling better... and woke up 2 days ago with agonizing pain in my right side, a couple inches lower than my arm pit. I think it may what you all are describing. But 1-2 months of recovery??? I have 3 kids under 4, including a baby. I have just been taking IB, but sleep is impossible so maybe i should go to the MDs and get something a bit more strong. Good luck to all.
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replied January 3rd, 2010
Part 2 - I found out what it was!
Just a heads up, and a part 2 to my story, I ended up going to the Emergency Room after it got unbearable, and I found out I had fractured a rib coughing. I'm definitely glad I bit the bullet and went to the ER, and I suggest that if you are in a lot of pain, you do likewise. I was trying to treat a fractured bone with muscle cream!
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replied January 3rd, 2010
Ok, i just went to A Minute Clinic in CVS (Nurse Practioner)and she said the same thing... she thinks i cracked a rib and suggested going to the ER because CVS obviously does not any imaging equipment. She also could feel something bulge in my side and b/c i cannot take a deep breath w/o total pain, (i am comparing it to childbirth!) she thinks it is probable that i have cracked a rib. What did they suggest you do? and how long is recovery? I obviously have not gone to the ER yet (had all of my kids with me). Thanks for your feedback.
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replied January 3rd, 2010
The only thing that can be done, apparently, is to take pain meds and rest. Since it isn't broken, just fractured, there isn't much they can do. Thankfully, the pain meds they gave me started helping immediately. It's been two days since I went to the hospital and I already feel WORLDS better. I can sit up on my own and shuffle around, which I could NOT do a few days ago. They told me it will take up to two months to completely heal, but thankfully those two months won't be filled with CONSTANT PAIN like I was worried they would be. In fact, I think I will be mostly pain-free by next week... I wish there was a way to make it go by faster, but taking it easy is the only thing that seems to help.
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