Rib and breastbone pain

by Barbara
(Delaware, USA)

Rib and breastbone pain

I have experienced rib pain for over two years now. I've been to musculoskeletal doctor who was highly recommended. After a treatment with him, I was worse. I've been to many physical therapists, chiropractors and an acupuncturist. I have had some relief but it never goes completely away. Breathing is difficult at times as is sitting, especially if I place my back against the back of a chair. I have had heartburn which I did not experience before. This all happened after I did some extremely strenuous yard work. The pain actually feels like a stitch in my side as well as in my back ribs. Sometimes I have pain in my breastbone area. Specialists who have examined me say my left rib cage protrudes and is higher than the right. My hip also tends to stay hiked up and the pta has tried to correct that by having me cough while she pulls on my foot. Will you please offer a diagnosis? Is it possible to dislocate a ribcage? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Hello Barbara,
There is a high suspicion of a condition known as Tietzes syndrome. Heavy manipulation in the middle of the back will increase the breastbone pain.

It probably all starts from a subluxated rib in your midback, though there are different opinions.

If you run your fingers down the breastbone is one side more tender? Is there a palpable lump?

The diaphragm attaches to the underside of these ribs which is why there is often indigestion or heartburn.

The breathing pain is a very strong sign of a rib condition.

A breast exam and chest xray would be a good idea.

Let me know.

» Rib and breastbone pain

Comments for Rib and breastbone pain

Average Rating starstarstarstarstar

Click here to add your own comments

Apr 11, 2016
Tietze's syndrome help
by: Anonymous

I have the same exact trouble with my ribs and hip on the same side. Have been to 5 chiropractors and all made it worse. If you know the name of the doc that fixes this in Jersey... Let me know.

Hello, as stated below a hard posterior manipulation of the rib will often worsen breastbone pain; the "anterior thoracic" is the treatment of choice.

Having been to five different chiropractors though, unless you were expecting a one treatment miracle from each, means it's time for an x-ray. If you also have a cough, and especially if a smoker, then see your medical doctor.

Dr B

Jul 30, 2015
Possible Tietzes?
by: Barbara, Delaware, USA

Dr. B.

I have had both a breast exam and a chest xray. Neither one shows any type of abnormality. Someone mentioned on a previous post, they knew of a chiropractor in New Jersey who could possibly help, someone who is familiar with Tietzes syndrome. Could you pass along this person's name and contact info? Also, if anyone knows of a medical professional in Maryland that would be appreciated as well and would help me in regards to health insurance. Thank you so much. This website has given me hope I haven't had in quite a while.

Best regards,


I'm afraid I'm far distant in South Africa and have no clue of chiropractors familiar with Tietzes.

Start with list of chiropractors and phone each one, ask if they've heard of Tietzes syndrome, if yes, go for an examination without treatment. Then weigh up whether this person seems to know what they are about.

Just remember, a forceful posterior to anterior manipulation will worsen your condition.

I can give you a reasonable assurance that you get at least fifty percent relief of pain, and probably eighty.

I've worked out how to treat Tietzes syndrome, and you can be sure there are plenty of others. They can always skype me.

Dr B

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to LOVE HATE.

Did you find this page useful? Then perhaps forward it to a suffering friend. Better still, Tweet or Face Book it.

Share this page:
Enjoy this page? Then forward it to a friend. Here's how...

Would you prefer to share this page with others by linking to it?

  1. Click on the HTML link code below.
  2. Copy and paste it, adding a note of your own, into your blog, a Web page, forums, a blog comment, your Facebook account, or anywhere that someone would find this page valuable.