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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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I'm worried about by partner. On Saturday he suddenly developed

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Dr. Praveen Tayal

Orthopaedic Surgeon

Practicing since :1994

Answered : 11571 Questions

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Posted on Fri, 15 Feb 2019 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Question: I'm worried about by partner. On Saturday he suddenly developed what appeared to be acute muscular pain in his chest, under his fourth rib on the left side.The pain is worse when he moves, laughs or coughs, or if it is cold. On Tuesday we spotted what felt like a small lump or raised area that was reasonably firm and painful to touch, very close to the rib (position under the nipple slightly closer to the breastbone). He has been referred for an x-ray, but naturally I'm starting to think all of the horrible things it could be. He did just have a cold, which involved some coughing, and wondered if that might be a factor. He has suffered no injury to cause a fracture. No shortness of breath, no weight loss, otherwise in good health. Only long term medical condition is psoriasis which is relatively minor (left elbow, upper arm). He's currently taking NSAIDS (ibuprofen) applying heat patches to the area, but he is still very sore.
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Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 38 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Can be strained intercostal muscle.

Detailed Answer:
Hello,
Thanks for posting your query.
This visible lump on the lower left side of ribs can be due to pulled intercostal muscles which has resulted in a hematoma (collection of blood after injury) formation causing this lump or it can be a due to a cracked rib. One can crack a rib at any age from sneezing or a strong bout of coughing. Hence most likely this pain and lump formation can be due to pulled and strained intercostal muscles.
He can continue with rest and mild pain killers. Get an X-ray done as advised by your physician. This is likely to improve in 5-7 days.


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Wishing you good health.
Regards.
Dr. Praveen Tayal.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Follow up: Dr. Praveen Tayal 9 minutes later
Thank you.

Is the position of the lump relevant? To be clear, it appears very close to the rib, just under, as if connected.
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Follow up: Dr. Praveen Tayal 8 hours later
Just to follow up, my partner insists the swelling is on the rib rather than under it.
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Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 3 hours later
Brief Answer:
Can be related to a cracked rib.

Detailed Answer:
Hello.
Thanks for writing again.
The swelling on the rib can be related to a cracked rib. But the collected blood can get displaced also due to gravity. The injury is most likely at the most tender point.
Hope my answer is helpful.
Do accept my answer in case there are no further queries.
Regards.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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