The rib cage helps protect your heart and lungs which are amongst the most vital organs in your body. It is made up of 24 individual bone structures, 12 on each side forming a cage attached to a long flat bone called the sternum. Cartilages connect the individual ribs to the sternum forming a tough barrier in the chest.
Any blow to your chest can cause minor and serious injuries, which can result in pain and difficulty in breathing. This is a clear indicator that the vital organs inside your chest have been bruised or severely damaged and immediate medical attention is advised.
Rib pain treatment is done for injuries like damage to the blood vessels, impact to the lungs or airway, blows to the back of the chest or side of the chest. Rib fractures are serious rib cage injuries, leading to rib cracks and bruised cartilages that attach the ribs to the sternum.
Rib pain can be caused due to any one of the following factors:
Bone fracture: There are many ways in which your bone can fracture which can be a complete break or even a partial break in the structure leading to bruising, bleeding, severe pain, loss of function in the injured area among other easily noticeable signs and symptoms. Rib cage bone fracture can lead to several complications which is why immediate medical assistance to stabilize the injured area is strongly advised.
Costochondritis: This condition affects the cartilage that holds the ribs together attached to the sternum. Costochondritis leads to inflammation of the cartilage with symptoms that include pain in the chest area, pain experienced while coughing, tenderness felt on the breastbone among others.
Pleurisy: Pleurisy is experienced when the tissue that lines the lungs and chest wall is inflamed causing pain. Rib pain treatment for pleurisy is recommended with a course of antibiotics by medical professionals.
Osteoporosis: This is a condition which causes loss of bone density, thus increasing the risk of fractures. Since the rib cage is made up of individual rib bones attached to the sternum, osteoporosis can weaken the structure leaving it vulnerable to bruises and injuries. This is a very common condition which affects more than 10 million people in the country every year.
Symptoms are not that easy to identify in case of osteoporosis since many people are diagnosed with the condition only after they have suffered some bone injury. Rib pain treatment for people who are suffering from osteoporosis can be recommended only after understanding the condition.