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Severe upper back ribcage pain that occasionally wraps around my right side to the front. Wakes me up at night and HORRIFIC in the morning!

My name is Pam, I am 42 and I have had this for about 4 years but it has become SEVERE the last 3 months to where it wakes me up at night and I am more miserable than I have been in my entire life! I can only sleep on my right side which makes things worse! it hurts all day, it is now on both sides but usually is more prominent on my right side and sometimes spreads around to the front and I am getting so frustrated!! Throughout the night it feels like someone has a huge vice grip around my entire rib cage and has it just tight enough not to break a rib, but comes really close! That is the best way I can describe it. I take hydrocodone every 4-6 hrs for a lovely variety of chronic pain conditions and that just takes the edge off for about 2 hours! I also have Fibromyalgia, MS, lumbar and cervical disc bulges, DDD and Psoriatic Arthritis. I have had these and other minor medical conditions way before all of this began! I have told my PCP, my Cardiologist and my Pain Mgt Dr's about it and they seem to all either say it's due to one of my medical conditions, my Cardiologist is doing a stress test to check for any more blocked arteries and my PCP said if the stress test comes back normal it could be my gallbladder and will send me for a HIDA scan. Funny thing is, I have had 2 hiss scans and 2 CT scans in the last 5 yrs to check my gallbladder and even admitted once due to pain in my right side and my gastro dr told me I needed my gallbladder out as I lay in a hospital bed and as he was still standing there the general surgeon came in and said it wasn't my gallbladder!!!! I'm so confused and need the help of people who have had the same symptoms or know someone who has! I am miserable, sick being in pain, need sleep and LOTS of help!! thanks for any and all help!

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I think the best thing for you to do is visiting a doctor who can examine your body correctly to determine what you may be suffering from. You should detail your conversation to the doctor and follow the instructions given later.

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The unfortunate truth is is very well could be just a symptom of your fibromyalgia or the arthritis. Hubby has had similar strange and un-diagnosable pains over the years (including one where his ribs feel like they are going to literally pop out of his chest) and every doctor he's ever seen has either been completely stumped, or has said it's just part of his fibromyalgia.

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I'm 57, DDD, arthritis, gall bladder removed due to horrible pain and gallstones, disabled due to 3 failed back surgeries, am currently ruptured again & refuse any more surgery, & now dealing with a terminal illness. Liver & spleen terribly swollen and limits my ability to lay in many positions, constant exhaustion/nausea. Oh yes, what you feel is most likely a result of one or more of your chronic pain issues. I wonder why you're still taking generic vicodin when it obviously isn't helping the pain. Just what is this "pain management doctor" doing for you if not helping you manage that pain?????? You have options. Move on to another "pain management doctor" if this one isn't helping, but MY personal opinion of them is very low. You've probably developed a tolerance to the vicodin & need something else, tho your options are limited. Try swimming-it enables you to move/exercise with less pain. Bicycling(I ride as often as I can) also helps some of the pain. Good luck-I do sympathize! We're in between a rock & a hard place, aren't we?

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Thank you all for taking the time to read and reply! Its so frustrating not only to have all of this pain, but to live in a VERY small town with limited specialists! And believe me, I have more than most. My husband has been in the Airforce for 24 years and for the last 7 we have been here and he retired finally, last official day is Jan 1 and already had a good job here so we dont have to leave our kids and grandkids! I'm on meds for my Fibro and also have friends who suffer from it and no one has ever experienced this :( Psoriatic arthritis.... Possibly... I'm just tired of Dr's and medications and tests... That's why I decided to post it here. JADESMOMMA... I'm SOOO sorry to hear what your going through! My heart goes out to you and you will be in my prayers. As for my pain meds, it was my choice to just stay on the hydrocodone I'm on. In fact, they actually compound it and take all but 75mg of acetaminophen out of each 10mg so I am able to take up to 10 capsules per day. BUT, I actually have an appt on Monday and will tell him my pain level is out of control and he will add morphine to my long list of meds with the hydrocodone. I have been on it before, just made me very tired so I asked to be taken off of it. I'm just worried that my tolerance will be so high that if I have to have surgery nothing will work for surgical pain if im on morphine! I guess I should not worry about that so much since I can't even do the dishes, fold my laundry or sleep in this pain!!
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I wanted to answer this question. I am 34-years-old and I had this happen to me for the first time when I was 7 weeks pregnant a few months ago. It was brought about (I believe) by sudden weight gain as I was gaining weight quickly by eating whatever I wanted because I was pregnant. This particular day, I ate at an all you can eat buffet and then had a cookout when I got home. It actually feels like my rib cage is expanding because I was gaining weight so quickly. I do not have a gallbladder. I also do not have any other diseases or disorders, just obesity. No doctor could tell me what it was. The episode lasted for 24 hours, although after the first 12 hours it became kind of tolerable. I ended up throwing up after 24 hours and ALL the pain went away completely after that. It was such a relief. I still have no idea what it was, but it was so painful and hard to breathe that I went straight to the hospital!

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I am so sorry you have felt the same pain especially while being pregnant! My daughter is also 7 months pregnant and was obese about 2 years ago when she finally ordered the PX90 exercise program. Within a year she had lost over 100lbs! Ever since she has been pregnant she still walks up to 6 miles a day and was doing Zumba until she was to big to do it. Just thought I would share.

As for my ribcage pain, I learned it is due to my MS and a bad bed! I finally went out and got a Tempurpedic Cloud Luxe! Now I am able to sleep like a baby for a good 7-8 hrs and wake up in very little pain, although I still have the pain if I sleep longer than 8hrs.
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Hi I have had a similar pain in my back which goes around my ribs and if I touch my ribs they are very sore. The pain is unbelievable and I have been suffering like this for over 10 years. I have tried everything. Physio therapy Acupuncture, Chiropractor all the pain relief you can mention. Unfortunately I cannot cope with Morphine drugs they make me violently sick and ill. Yet frustrating thing is because I had 1 MRI scan about 3 years ago my doctor just will not contemplate sending me for another. I have heard someone on the radio recently talking about pain she suffered with the muscles in her ribs and I think she received some satisfactory treatment, my problem is getting someone to diagnose what's wrong. I cannot believe this day and age that someone has not said 'Oh you are suffering from ??????' and given me the correct treatment. How on earth can they tell me to take this, do this excercise etc when they do not know what the problem is, I could be making matters worse! I like you are at the end of my tether and do not know how much longer I can go on like this. CM from Sheffield

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hi chrissy...i've had serious soreness and stiffness around my ribcage on my right/back side...have x-ray done ...doctor sees nothing wrong...it;s been 5 or 6 yrs. now...can;t seem to figure this out...did you get any answers yet?...it feels like the tissue between the ribs gets inflamed

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I have had the most terrible pain in my right rib cage, I feel as though my rib cage is going to burst, I feel really unwell and dizzy, this is the 3rd time I have had this and I have been sent to the pain clinic and told to do excercises which is to painful for me, no one has come up with an answer, I dread going to bed at night because I know that when I get up the pain will be unbearable and brings tears to my eyes,this usually lasts about 4 months before the pain subsides but I am always concious of a dull ache in this area. from J in Fleet Hants.
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I'm having a CT scan tomorrow and God willing they can find out why I am in so much pain.
The symptoms you all are having sounds like mine, which concerns me.
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