Rib Fracture & Sprain
Rib Fracture
 
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The curved contour of the ribs and their ability to flex allow them to absorb the forces associated with fractures. Nevertheless, any bone will fracture with sufficient force. The weakest point of the ribs is the outer curve.
 
Symptoms Include:
  • Painful, shallow breathing.
  • Rib pain while coughing.
  • Bruising or swelling at fracture site.
  • Localized tenderness in the fracture site.
Treatment:
Non-surgical treatment
  • Rest…reduction of physical activity until the rib pain subsides (4 to 6 weeks on average).
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs) such as Ibuprofen, Motrin, Naprosyn and Celebrex may be used to decrease rib pain. Be sure to talk to your doctor before starting these medications.
  • Rehabilitation to help breathing.
  • Cold therapy at the fracture site to relieve the rib pain.
  • Use of a rib belt or binder may be recommended.
Soft Tissue Injuries

Injuries to the soft tissues of the thorax (rib cage) typically involve the intercostal muscles. Vigorous twisting of the body or extreme arm motions commonly are associated with soft tissue injuries of the thorax (rib cage). Costal cartilage separation at the attachment to the sternum is usually the result of trauma.

Symptoms Include:
  • Painful, shallow breathing.
  • Rib pain while coughing.
  • Bruising or swelling.
  • Localized tenderness
Treatment:
Non-surgical treatment
  • Rest…reduction of physical activity until the rib pain subsides (4 to 6 weeks on average).
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs such as Ibuprofen, Motrin, Naprosyn and Celebrex may be used to decrease rib pain. Be sure to talk to your doctor before starting these medications.
  • Rehabilitation to help breathing.
  • Cold therapy at the fracture site to relieve the rib pain.
  • Use of a rib belt or binder may be recommended.


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Rib Fracture & Sprain