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Have extra rib, pain on right side, rib moves easily when pressed on, can hear it pop. What specialist to see?

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Orthopaedic Surgeon
Practicing since : 1994
Answered : 9086 Questions
I am 22 years old. I have an extra rib on my right side. Every since I was a child I have not been able to run more than about a quarter mile before I get an excruciating pain on my right side. Not just the cramping kind, but the kind that brings me to my knees and I can't breath correctly. I am very athletic and in great shape but I can't run. I ride my mountain bike very hard and get quite winded and have no pain. It seems to be when I am vertical that the pain sets in. It does not just go away either....It will last for 24 to 48 hours so I don't think it is the common "stitch". This extra rib moves quite easily when pressed on and I can hear it "pop". Please advise as to what kind of specialist I should see. I don't want to go through the rest of my life with this.

Thank you very much for your time!
Sincerely, XXXXXXX
Posted Wed, 12 Sep 2012 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 3 hours later
Thanks for posting your query.
An extra rib can cause compression of the nerves and blood vessels causing the symptoms of pain like you are having which are specially aggravated on doing overhead activities.
You need to consult an orthopedician who will advise you X-rays and MRI scan to detect the degree of compression the rib is producing. Usually physical therapy is recommended for minor symptoms but in some cases, surgical treatment may also be needed.
I hope this answers your query.
In case you have additional questions or doubts, you can forward them to me, and I shall be glad to help you out.
Please accept my answer in case you do not have further queries.
Wishing you good health.
Dr. Praveen Tayal.
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