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What does pain in the rib cage after flu infection indicate?

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Posted on Tue, 26 May 2015
Question: Hi! I had the flu (quite badly) a few weeks ago, and I am finally mostly over it. However, for the past four or five days I have been experiencing pain on my left side along my ribcage and behind my left breast. The pain is sharp and fairly constant. When I press on the area the pain increases. It is most extreme when I breathe in. Ibuprofin helps, but it always comes back and seems to be getting worse. Is this something serious, do I need to go back to my doctor?
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Answered by Dr. Mohammed Taher Ali (1 hour later)
Brief Answer:
Chest pain could be due to Pleurisy>

Detailed Answer:
Hi
Thanks for posting your query.
I appreciate your concern for the chest pain.

The features described in your history are suggestive of Pleurisy.

Pleurisy is inflammation of the lining of the lungs and chest (the pleura) that leads to chest pain when you take a breath, cough or sneeze.

It may also occur with:

Asbestos-related disease, chest trauma, pulmonary embolus, rheumatoid arthritis, or lupus.

You are advised to visit your doctor for proper examination and may be you need certain lab tests like CBC, Chest X rays to find out the exact cause.

Treatment depends on the cause of the pleurisy.
Bacterial infections are treated with a course of appropriate antibiotics and analgesics like Codeine to reduce the pain.

Hope the suggestions given above could be useful in getting the treatment.

Should you any doubt, please feel free to send your query.
Wishing a good health.



Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Raju A.T
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Answered by
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Dr. Mohammed Taher Ali

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :1988

Answered : 6241 Questions

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What does pain in the rib cage after flu infection indicate?

Brief Answer: Chest pain could be due to Pleurisy> Detailed Answer: Hi Thanks for posting your query. I appreciate your concern for the chest pain. The features described in your history are suggestive of Pleurisy. Pleurisy is inflammation of the lining of the lungs and chest (the pleura) that leads to chest pain when you take a breath, cough or sneeze. It may also occur with: Asbestos-related disease, chest trauma, pulmonary embolus, rheumatoid arthritis, or lupus. You are advised to visit your doctor for proper examination and may be you need certain lab tests like CBC, Chest X rays to find out the exact cause. Treatment depends on the cause of the pleurisy. Bacterial infections are treated with a course of appropriate antibiotics and analgesics like Codeine to reduce the pain. Hope the suggestions given above could be useful in getting the treatment. Should you any doubt, please feel free to send your query. Wishing a good health.