Deep Rhomboid Pain with breathing
Deep Rhomboid Pain with breathing suggests a subluxated rib head.
I have recently developed left side deep rhomboid pain. About 14 days ago it started and was extreme pain. I was not doing anything strenuous at the time of onset, but I did feel a tingling "pop" in that area. Within 30 hours of onset, my family took me to the Emergency Room, because I was suffering so greatly. They diagnosed it as "Rhomboid Spasms". I received muscle relaxers and pain medication, and sent home to rest with alternating heat and ice. I stayed home from work for one day after ER visit (desk job, but I use an adjustable standing desk and wear orthopedic support shoes). I have seen a massage therapist, who was able to reduce the pain, but it only lasted about 12 hours. Since then, I have used up all the awful pills, and have continued using over the counter pain meds (Aleve, Advil and Tylenol) to try and take the edge off this awful pain. My doctor has now prescribed steroids to see if that helps.
More about me:
-42 year old female, active, overweight but losing weight, I eat very low carb
More about my pain:
-It does not get better or worse with arm, neck or torso movement
-A deep breath makes the pain sharp
-When I am lying down the pain is minimal
-when I am sitting or standing, the pain is at its worst
-when I am walking, the pain decreases
-however, when I am walking, there is a deep ache in my left calf and the area behind my knee. I do not feel this leg ache when sitting or standing
-Heat and ice BOTH take the edge off
Let me know if you need any more info, but I am desperate to know what to do. I am miserable while working (I LOVE MY JOB), and the pain is making me very grumpy and hard to be around. I just want to lie down to get pain relief. Please help. What else can be the cause of this awful pain?
Apologies for the late reply, Amy. I've been on two weeks leave.
This really is a simple one; the key sign is that a deep breath gives you sharp pain. You have subluxated a rib head in the middle of your back. The primary problem has nothing to do with the rhomboid muscle.
I can virtually guarantee that deep pressure over the offending rib head, just lateral to the spine, will be very painful.
At this stage it may be radiating along the rib, under the armpit, under the breast to the sternum; if so I strong recommend that your chiropractor uses an "anterior thoracic" rather than a heavy P to A manipulation which may aggravate the pain.
This really is one of the simpler things we treat, Amy. You've been led a giddy dance by those are not up on a rib head subluxation.
If there are any complicating facts like a fever, cough, or old thoracic spine injury then an x-ray would be beneficial though this is rarely the case; you have a subluxated rib head. Almost guaranteed!
Let me know how you get on. By the way, apart from having treated thousands of similar cases, I've had it myself. You're not wingeing about nothing; it hurts! Perhaps print this out and take it to your chiropractor with you.
Well done on getting the pounds off; keep up the good work. Thank you for a very well presented case history.