Home » Browse Health Topics » Pain » Episodes of sharp pain behind or under ribs
Episodes of sharp pain behind or under ribs
Dear Ask The Doctor:
Hi doctor. I get very sharp pains behind and under my ribs. it come and go, at times more than others. It really hurts, and when I get it I cant breath properly, because it hurts so much. My boyfriend is really the only one who have seen how bad it is, and he keep telling me to go to the doctor, but i have never been very keen to go, as I feel a bit silly if it is nothing. I know that maybe i should go, but i rather not ... Anyway, do you know what it could be? Ive had it for years, but its only the last year it has gone very bad. it feels like something is wrong inside me, like as if something should not be there, or something is pushing where it should not The pain can be there for 5 seconds, or 5 minutes.. Sometimes it really scares me :s I am 16 years old.
Answer:Usually the pain that you described occurs after a violent muscle contraction or direct trauma to the intercostal muscles and/or nerves. The term "intercostal" refers to the location between two ribs. The intercostal areas of the body contain nerves, muscle and blood vessels. Eleven intercostal nerves inhabit the spaces between the ribs. When these nerves are affected by an injury, disease or condition that causes pain to radiate along the nerve, that pain is called intercostal neuralgia. A number of conditions can cause this symptom. The main symptom of intercostal neuralgia is pain in the rib cage area, often described as stabbing, sharp, spasm-like, tearing, tender, aching or gnawing. The pain may wrap around your chest or radiate from the back toward the front of your chest in a band-like pattern. Sometimes you may feel pain uniformly along the length of your ribs. Intercostal neuralgia may occur in sporadic episodes of acute pain or it may be dull and constant. The pain of intercostal neuralgia may intensify with exertion. This includes activities such as lifting heavy objects, twisting or turning your torso, coughing, sneezing, or laughing. Intercostal neuralgia can be caused by a variety of mild to serious diseases, disorders and conditions. This includes infection, surgery, pregnancy, inflammation, trauma, malignancy, and other abnormal processes. In the view that you do not recall direct trauma, chest injury, pregnancy, surgery or pulled muscles and the episodes are recurrent, I strongly recommend that you have a consultation with your doctor in order to rule out some other possible causes and accordingly proceed with the right treatment option.
Have a Question? Ask The Doctor Here.
Sign In to join in the conversation.
Having abdominal pain, please help.
About a month ago I believe I pulled an abdominal muscle from shoveling on my left side. It lasted about a week and t...
Strange Armpit and Groin Pain - Pinching/Swelli...
I am having armpit and groin soreness (which also feels like a swelling/pinching type feeling, almost as if my skin i...
My gradma having legpains what should we do ?
Hallo doctor this is Rama Krishna i am a student. my grandma having leg pains and these pains are comes regularly ,so...
Painful lump under armpit
I am a 31 year old female and have had a painful, dime-sized lump under my left armpit since the late fall. It is wel...
Hi my mother has seen over 20 doctors and non
Hi my mother has seen over 20 doctors and non has no idea what she may have, her symptoms are small lumps in her skin...
I have pain in my chest that goes into my stomach
I have pain in my chest that goes into my stomach. Also into my left side. It's not a lower pain it's all up near my ...
Everytime I drink or eat (after I swallow), i ...
Everytime I drink or eat (after I swallow) I get a very sharp pain in my left shoulder? Plus it hurts my stomach al...
Pain in legs at night
Good day, my friend is 82 years old women, who suffers from pain in her legs. Pain starts only at night, it stops onl...
I have alot of pain on my rib
I have alot of pain on my rib when I breathe in. Do I need to go to the ER?
Suffering after injection, was very healthy before
Hi, I suffered enormously after invega sustenna injections. Loss of vision, severe headaches, vitamins low, low blood...
You’re in good hands, meet ATD’s founding physicians.
Dr. Suneel Sharman M.D.
- Board Certified GP
- CMO ATD Health Network Inc.
- Adjunct Professor at U Of T
Dr. Kunaal Jindal M.D.
- Board Certified Plastic Surgeon
- Director ATD Health Network Inc.
- Fellowship Training Atlanta, GA