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Costochondritis


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#1 PeaceFrog

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Posted 31 December 2011 - 12:10 AM

well... I feel kinda strange about posting here because I'm not in a life/death situation...

but... my quality of life certainly does depend on it because I'm in severe pain, and unable to work.

Anyway, Costochondritis is inflammation of the cartilage between your ribs, and let me tell you IT HURTS LIKE A MUTHA FU*** yes it does... like a bullet in my chest.

And I'm unable to lift anything too heavy like over 20 pounds.

I first went to an orthopedist for shoulder pain. He gave me cortisone shots that dulled the pain for a couple months, but then it came right back. You can only get so many shots before your muscle deteriorates so he cut me off on those.

Anyway, then I tried a chiropractor, and I still go to him. I think he's helped because the pain in my shoulder has pretty much completely gone away. There's still slight soreness in my neck, and now there's this pain in my chest.

The pain is probably from doing the exercises that were prescribed for me. The chiro thinks this rib was the problem all along... adhesions or something, and in order to avoid pain I started compensating with other muscles, and that's how the entire arm got all effed up.

Anyway... so if you've really paid attention, my arm is better! Hooray! The thing is, I'm still not in full operating condition since now I have this chest pain....

OK so... I guess I got a question... has anyone else dealt with this? I guess it takes a few months to go away on its own... but I also saw online you might be able to get a cortisone shot for it... and then that leaves the question... should I get the shot? Or should I just tough it out a few months so this heals correctly, because I guess cortisone restricts blood flow and delays healing. That is the trade-off... pain relief for slower actual healing.

Also, I guess healing vibes would be cool. They couldn't hurt.

Thanks for noticing me.

PS of course I do use Ice packs, and I have a portable ultrasound, and take anti-inflammatories, but the pills supposedly won't even help really since circulation in your cartilage isn't that great, and the substance never even gets in there.

#2 TEO

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Posted 03 January 2012 - 05:41 PM

Ouch! No experience with this personally. If you can afford the extra time and stand the pain, my choice would be let it heal properly.

You might want to consider looking into some non Western healing such as acupuncture or Reiki. I have had much benefit from such alternative practices. (If you choose this root bear in mind that not all have the same skill level and get recommendations rather than picking a practitioner out of the phone book.

All best for swift and complete healing. :heart:

#3 PeaceFrog

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Posted 03 January 2012 - 08:24 PM

Thank you...

I did try acupuncture twice and it didn't really help... but worst thing about it was the price. My insurance doesn't cover it.

I really can't afford to stay out of work... so I'm probably going to get the shots. I'm waiting for a call back with an appointment.

I don't know too much about Reiki... do you think it really works?

#4 TEO

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Posted 03 January 2012 - 08:56 PM

For years I would have said no based on experiences with two different practitioners. Now however I do think it can be beneficial after receiving Reiki via a truly skilled practitioner.

I wouldn't go expecting it to be a one appointment magic cure, and it took me years to understand how much difference there can be in practitioners. I think there is among traditional doctors as well, but because most things are treated with drugs or surgery we are less apt to notice.

#5 PeaceFrog

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Posted 16 January 2012 - 03:38 PM

so I got back from the pain management clinic this morning.

No injections. The doctor didn't think it was severe enough. It is feeling a little better than the other day but still hurts.

Anyway, he gave me a topical anti-inflammatory gel called Voltaren. He also said to put heat on it, don't do any activity that exacerbates the condition, and continue taking celebrex.

On one hand, if I really don't need injections, than I'm probably better off without them. On the other hand, are these doctors just trying to milk a problem for all it's worth? I have to go back in a month for a follow-up. If I'm still in pain, he'll probably schedule another visit for the injection that I should have just gotten today.

health care is a scam.

#6 Karen

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Posted 16 January 2012 - 03:59 PM

I had this on and off for years.....finally resolved itself (somehow) about 10 years ago.

Good luck to you! It can definitely be quite painful.

#7 PeaceFrog

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Posted 16 January 2012 - 04:09 PM

that's really odd that you had it off and on for years, then it just went away unnoticed...

did you change careers or anything? Any other life changes? For years, I just thought it was anxiety... and who knows.. maybe it is.

This Voltaren gel the doctor gave me doesn't seem to do a thing... at least it was a free sample.

That didn't make any sense to me either... how can it absorb into your skin that deep? I guess the stuff is new. I hope I don't wake up tomorrow with a patch of missing skin.

#8 Karen

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Posted 16 January 2012 - 04:44 PM

INo major life changes when it went away other than becoming a vegetarian. However, I am not one anymore and it has not come back...

#9 PeaceFrog

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Posted 28 February 2012 - 07:14 PM

I finally got in today for the shots of cortisone. He gave me four of them right into the chest.

it felt kinda painful but kind of good going in... the center of my chest now feels numb, and my shoulder hurts again just like it did before.

They said it might flare up worse before it gets better, so I'm hoping that's all the shoulder pain is...

The numbness is because of the lidocaine or whatever it was they injected with the cortisone. It will wear off soon.

Anyway... hopefully I'm on my way to feeling better soon.

Oh and really this health care system is designed to rake the patient over the coals... I've been dealing with this problem for months.

#10 sarah b.

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Posted 04 April 2012 - 05:27 AM

I hope you're feeling better, now.

#11 PeaceFrog

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 05:18 PM

I'm feeling better than I have in years. Thanks!

I had another round of shots about a week ago, they work really well.

I just hope I'm not stuck getting these shots for the rest of my life, but for now it's better just to enjoy the relief than worry about it!

#12 MeOmYo

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 05:34 PM

glad you're feeling better. constant pain does not help in enjoying life.

#13 PeaceFrog

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 08:08 PM

Thanks man... feeling good is well... good.

Pain is not good (for the most part, though it has been said that pain is gain), and it hampers productivity.

Which is why I feel that it should be a right for every human to live pain free.

Of course, I can't change the world, but I think Obamacare is a good start :thup:

#14 MeOmYo

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Posted 07 May 2012 - 09:00 PM

Can this be moved to P & R now?

#15 PeaceFrog

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 01:13 AM

I would hope that decision would be left up to me, and no. I'd rather it got deleted than moved. It isn't a political thread.

#16 PeaceFrog

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 08:09 PM

I had this on and off for years.....finally resolved itself (somehow) about 10 years ago. Good luck to you! It can definitely be quite painful.


How the HECK do you think it resolved itself???

Were you just unusually active at one point, and then stopped?

I wish mine would go away completely but there is still a lingering ache...

I'm going back to work probably at the end of this week... the pain is not nearly as bad as it was before, but still not resolved completely :(

#17 Karen

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 11:10 PM

How the HECK do you think it resolved itself??? Were you just unusually active at one point, and then stopped? I wish mine would go away completely but there is still a lingering ache... I'm going back to work probably at the end of this week... the pain is not nearly as bad as it was before, but still not resolved completely :(


I don't know how it resolved itselt....but I am sure glad it did. It occurs to me that, at the time I had it, I used to get respiratory infections a couple of times a year. I also had broken ribs when I was younger... The doctor thought that it might have to do with those things (which I have not had in years)

Hopefully, yours will clear up too!

#18 PeaceFrog

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Posted 09 May 2012 - 12:17 AM

that can't be a coincidence because I had broken ribs a few years back and also respiratory infections...

thanks for your well wishes! I have a little soreness here and there, but it all should go away in time and with stretching and strengthening exercises... gotta be glad it isn't anything serious!