intercostal muscle strain?

tinman

Member
Location
Ulster
last week, round abouts Wednesday or so i done something, not 100% sure what it was but i think it might of been when i was trying to push a pipe into a fitting on a trough.
i came home that evening and went to bed that night with no pain at all.

2am and i woke up with a decent enough pain, thought i had slept in a bad position or something as my chest and right shoulder were fair sore, 4 out of 10 stuff.
twisted and turned and didn't sleep much between but at 4.30 i got up and i sure as hell felt i wasnt right, at that stage i was up on 5 or 6 of the pain o meter.

had a shower but not a pile better after it, told the wife something wasn't right so i called nowdoc (a call center where you can speak to a nurse), in no time at all she had me chewing asprin and an ambulance on its way....
not what i was expecting tbh but i had my concerns too.

Anyways, they came out, tested my blood, done an angiogram (spelling), load of leads stuck to my chest and so on but they/we came to the conclusion that when everything was testing aok that i had pulled my intercostal muscle/s in my upper chest and rather go to the hospital (to the red zone as they called it), i elected to stay home and rest a bit which isnt that easy tbh, i took it a bit easier for a few days but work is backing up.

deep breaths are fair sore right now, not wild bad but a lingering 4 out of 10 say, if i walk up a hill i feel it more, normal work is heavy work right now, its getting old at this stage.

So here is my question, anyone ever done something similar?, and if so, how long am i going to be looking at here before i get back on track would anyone have experience of.
i wouldn't say im the first person to do this...
 
Last edited:

flowerpot

Member
A bad muscle strain can take quite a while to mend, so you just have to let it heal up which means time. Did the doctor say anything about applying gentle heat, like a hot water bottle?

I was pushing a loaded wheelbarrow once and had a sudden pain which felt as if a knife had ripped up my stomach muscles., like a zip. I was rolling around on the ground in pain, being female, and thinking that my insides were going to fall out. There was no one around to help, so after quite a while I got slowly to my feet. Had it not been New Years Day I would have gone to the doctor it was so painful, I was convinced it was serious, but it turned out not to be in the end. I can't remember how long it took to get better, but it never happened before or since.
 
Get urself to chiropractor.....went to one who is a mate of mine with exactly same prob.....he amused himself with my speech as everytime I said certain words my muscle pain took away my breath......he told me to lie down on his treatment table and cross my arms over my chest and he turned me onto my stomach and pushed into the middle of my back...it sounded like my spine had been snapped but my discomfort completely disappeared.
 
I had it once, I think I did it in bed just by stretching funny or taking clothes off or something. It was agony to move or do much of anything for several days- sitting in the truck and driving was possible but fairly murderous. I went to Boots (not Booths) and pleaded for Nurofen plus. They knocked me out and I slept fine for a couple of nights until it went away.
 
I've done it. The pain kept me awake literally all night so I went to the GP. I was prescribed strong painkillers for the pain and offered anti inflammatories (which I refused because they don't agree with me.) Was told to go home and rest and it would take about 6 weeks to mend completely. It was definitely improved after a fortnight but I was really careful to only do the minimum. The pain is so bad that you can't do much anyway. I never discovered what I'd done to cause it but I wouldn't want to repeat it.
 

tinman

Member
Location
Ulster
Sorry folks to be asking a question and then disappearing, under a lot of p with work at the mo, long days.

Its somewhat settled down, I start out not so bad in the mornings now but by nightfall you know its there and times during the day it dosent forget to remind you.
ive been taking an ibuprofen tablet before bed at night for the last few nights and its helped it quite a bit, reduced the swelling inside id imagine, took one again tonight but ill stop now to see how its going for a few days.

sounds like, and looking like, time will heal it up but it aint in no rush to fix itself anyway quick altho its a hell of a lot better now than it was, its more manageable at least.

thanks for the replies, it gave me an insight as to the time to mend.
Dr Google says between 3 weeks and 3 months depending on how bad you did it in.
 

Wellytrack

Member
Just noticed this thread.

You have my sympathies @tinman and anyone else suffering similar.

I’m not so sure what my woes are but since sept/October I’ve had troubles ranging from mild to negligible effect to full on paralysis of my left arm.

I didn’t go to doctor til March (I know :() i take naproxen since then. A lady calls me occasionally and tells me I should do press ups against the wall to build up muscle in my shoulder but tbh it’s not for lack of pulling and hauling I do with both arms daily so I doubt it’s to do with muscle mass.

Sometimes its fine, others it feels like my shoulder has a trapped nerve as it travels all the way to my elbow. I cannot push my arm out or in but can lift as in the same movements as a bicep curl.

As a season of work is upon me now it’s quite concerning as I do need my arms. Both of them.
 

milkloss

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
East Sussex
Just noticed this thread.

You have my sympathies @tinman and anyone else suffering similar.

I’m not so sure what my woes are but since sept/October I’ve had troubles ranging from mild to negligible effect to full on paralysis of my left arm.

I didn’t go to doctor til March (I know :() i take naproxen since then. A lady calls me occasionally and tells me I should do press ups against the wall to build up muscle in my shoulder but tbh it’s not for lack of pulling and hauling I do with both arms daily so I doubt it’s to do with muscle mass.

Sometimes its fine, others it feels like my shoulder has a trapped nerve as it travels all the way to my elbow. I cannot push my arm out or in but can lift as in the same movements as a bicep curl.

As a season of work is upon me now it’s quite concerning as I do need my arms. Both of them.
Naproxen would suggest they are trying to treat a rotator cuff issue. I've done, it fcking hurts when yo move your arm in a particular direction depending which one you've torn.
theres another issue you can get where you can't lift your arms(s) above your shoulders, have to do a key hole op to cut something and then you're right as rain again..... not so sure about the nerve issues though.

i would suggest a good private sports physio would be your best best.
oh, and go easy on that naproxen..... only after food and even then consider omeprazole to prevent stomach ulcers over the longer term.
 

Wellytrack

Member
Naproxen would suggest they are trying to treat a rotator cuff issue. I've done, it fcking hurts when yo move your arm in a particular direction depending which one you've torn.
theres another issue you can get where you can't lift your arms(s) above your shoulders, have to do a key hole op to cut something and then you're right as rain again..... not so sure about the nerve issues though.

i would suggest a good private sports physio would be your best best.
oh, and go easy on that naproxen..... only after food and even then consider omeprazole to prevent stomach ulcers over the longer term.
Cheers. That sounds like it.

I spent a few nights grunting and groaning getting little ease, lay on the shoulder it hurts. Lay on the other shoulder the arm pulls across in its own weight and hurts.

Mention to the OH its painful. “Your a man. You don’t know pain” :rolleyes:
 

milkloss

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
East Sussex
You need to rest it as much as possible. If it hurts you’ve done too much and gone back to square one. The op to fix it if it’s really bad is not a route you want to take.
I got some exercises that really helped. Get a walking stick and hold it vertical at chest height. Good hand on the bottom to take the weight and bad hand at the top and that arm only grips and doesn’t power itself in any way. Use the bottom good hand to move in circles like you are drawing a circle, three one way and three the other. Keep going as long as you can and helps keep movement and build strength/confidence back up.

first time I did it was lifting a crush gate latch.... couldn’t drive home as 1st,3rd and 5th year were impossible to push in... nearly had me in tears every time And had to use my right hand for gear selection. Second time was milking, the only thing that hurt was hooking the clusters up so I just dropped them on the floor for a week or two!

it’s usually a very specific moment that’s hurts so the best thing to do is learn to lift, pull or push using different muscles, twist you hand or change body position helps.
 

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