Stabbing pain in right ribs for over a year with no relief from any treatment


Hello,
about a year ago my boyfriend started experiencing a stabbing pain in his right mid back rib area. He does mountain bike and lifts heavy tires for a living - but is always very careful. This seemed to come on out of the blue as well. He went to his Chiro and he adjusted him. Seemed to get worse after that.

It hurts worse standing up. He has been wearing a rib belt, which helps, but not completely. For the last 6 months he has tried acupuncture, cupping and has done prolotherapy twice now. The acupuncture/cupping seemed to give some relief - but nothing permanent. Since the prolotherapy the doctor has been sending him to another type of chiropractor and they keep saying his rib popped away from his spine. And the last visit they also found some vertebrae out of place. Nothing is helping him. By 3pm he is so exhausted from the pain and at his wits end. They have him on pain meds which he cannot stand taking.

He is pushing the people he loves away because he just can't seem to focus on anything other than managing this pain. Please, can someone give me an idea to help him.

It's must be a very distressing time for you all.

Has an x-rays of his chest and thoracic spine been taken? If not, that's where he should begin.

A few tests for he and you to do:
1. Take in a deep breath. Does it hurt, or did it in the past?

2. Sitting with behind him, you rotate his torso right and left, and then bend side ways. What happen?

3. Lying on his belly, just to the side of the spine, press down quite firmly, starting at the top and moving down, right and left. Any very tender spots?

4. Lying on his back, press where the rib meets the sternum. Sore? A lump?

Let me have SPECIFIC answers; do each one carefully and thoroughly, make notes and let me know if you want a useful reply.

Dr B


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» Stabbing pain in right ribs for over a year with no relief from any treatment



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Sep 18, 2017
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answers to DR questions
by: Deena

Has an x-rays of his chest and thoracic spine been taken? If not, that's where he should begin.
( yes he did have xrays but honestly not sure of where they focused - suspect just his right rib area)

A few tests for he and you to do:
1. Take in a deep breath. Does it hurt, or did it in the past?
(NO - there has never been any pain when breathing)

2. Sitting with behind him, you rotate his torso right and left, and then bend side ways. What happen?
( nothing happens, doesn't hurt. What is uncomfortable is stretching right shoulder up / right hip down. just sitting where that happens is uncomfortable.)

3. Lying on his belly, just to the side of the spine, press down quite firmly, starting at the top and moving down, right and left. Any very tender spots?
(Tender spots in 4-7 of the rib connection to the spine)

4. Lying on his back, press where the rib meets the sternum. Sore? A lump?
( no tenderness or lumps)

Let me have SPECIFIC answers; do each one carefully and thoroughly, make notes and let me know if you want a useful reply.

Hello Deena,
See if you can hold of the x-rays, and a copy of the report; they are usually digital today, but if on plain film you can film it using an ordinary digi camera. Keep it on record, and send me a copy to see.

I'm inclined to think this is a fairly typical rib subluxation, just hasn't been well managed; the most common adjustment is from the back towards the front but sometimes the so called 'anterior thoracic' treatment is more effective.

I'd be inclined to take a copy of the x-rays and perhaps this report to your chiropractor, or a different one, and have a new assessment; this usually isn't complex, but one treatment won't fix it.

Good luck.

Dr B

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Interesting challenges of the day

1. Mr S is a 76 year old man with neck pain of some 9 months duration. Luckily, most of the discomfort is upper cervical which is only rarely arthritic; his lower cervical spine is a degenerative mess that I've left alone. After seven treatments his pain and stiffness is 50 percent better, and he's happy in the circumstances. He can sleep through the night now and that makes a huge difference.

2. Mr P is 32 year old man with very severe lower back pain radiating to the big toe which is 30 percent numb. He had an episode three weeks ago, took anti inflammatories and was soon better as is typical of the medial disc herniation. But before it healed, after a trivia it came roaring back, much worse. The characteristic crossed sign was evident; sitting in a chair, straightening the right leg provoked severe left back pain and tingling in the leg. He's doing well.

3. Severe lower back pain is scary; just ask Mrs P. Just watching her get out of the car I she was in trouble; she had a slipped disc at L4 making her lean towards the opposite side; luckily she had no pain in the leg. Despite family pressure that this was far too severe for a chiropractor, she persevered. Within five days she was standing upright, and after two weeks almost painfree. 

Despite a hectic job, she wisely took my advice and stayed home for what I call exercising bed rest.

4. Mr S has had lower back, groin and back of thigh and calf pain for fourth months.

He has a pincer deformity in the hip causing the stabs in the groin, and a degenerative facet causing the sciatica. Both are responding well to chiropractic and he's well pleased; sixty five percent better after three treatments.

5. Mr T is a wise man; he's taken a warning TIA seriously and has lost 15 pounds, and has at least as much again to lose. A change to a low starch diet and half hour daily walk has made the difference; but the walking is making his foot and back miserable. The expensive orthotic is hopeless; luckily his hips and back are fine, but he needs a simple heel lift.

6. I too have had serious lower back issues, luckily fixed by my own chiropractor; so I too have to do my exercises, take care when lifting supers full of honey, gardening and using the chainsaw. Regaining the function of your spine is just as important as the pain.

7. My own granddaughter, only 7 is hypermobile giving her pelvic, knee and ankle issues. Xrays show a mildly dysplastic hip. Years ago we would have called it growing pains. She too regularly needs chiropractic care and luckily responds well. Increased range of motion is more difficult than too stiff in my opinion. Our care is for kids too.

8. This 65 year old lady is a serious gardener; every day she is bending, lifting and digging for 2 to 3 hours a day. It regularly catches her in the sacroiliac joint, so she has a treatment once a month that sorts it out. She does her lower back exercises faithfully.

9. This 88 year old lady is an inspiration; every day she is busy in the community. With a nasty scoliosis she manages very well with a chiropractic adjustment every six weeks and exercises faithfully done.  

10. Mr X is a 71 year old retired man who wants to continue with maintenance care every six to eight weeks; he had suffered from two years of lower back pain when he first came a year ago. He has no discomfort now after 8 chiropractic treatments, but is aware that danger lurks.

11. Mrs C has been having severe headaches, and taking a lot of analgesics. It's a non complicated upper cervical facet syndrome, and she's doing well.

12. Mr D is a 38 old year man with chronic shoulder pain after a rotator cuff tear playing cricket. It responded well to treatment, but he knows he must do his exercises every day; for two years he couldn't sleep on that shoulder.

13. Mr D, a 71 year old man, has a severe ache in the shoulder and midback since working above his head. Trapped nerve tests are negative but he has advanced degenerative joints of Luschka; after just two treatments he is 50 percent better. Can we reach 90?

And so the day goes; chiropractors shouldn't be treating the elderly most medical sites state but that's so much bunkum.



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