Intercostal muscle strain

Discussion in 'Injuries and Prevention' started by VoidKarateka, Jul 2, 2015.

  1. VoidKarateka

    VoidKarateka Valued Member

    Hi folks!

    Wondering if anyone has experience with this kind of injury.

    Basically I've pulled a rib. After doing some digging around the internet and talking to an old cricket mate I've come to the conclusion (pending a trip to the doctor) that I've got some sort of intercostal strain. About 3 inches down from the bottom of my pectoral muscle I'm in agony when trying to do certain ranges of movement. Even breathing is a problem at the mo. I can't actually fill my lungs because of the pain.

    I'm not sure the exact point I got the injury but I think it was from some heavy cardio at the start of the week. Monday, I ran about 9 miles on a canal route. I haven't done distance running beyond a few miles for a long time and I'm about 3 stone heavier now than my last proper run (I'm 15st now). Didn't have any problems on that day, warmed up well, cooled down well and had a good half hour rolling out with my foam roller after. The next day I cycled 18 miles. Same warm up and cool down and foam roller after. I was experiencing the chest pain after I got home. I rolled out as normal but I was incredibly sore, expecially around the midsection. I also had a class to coach which was quite taxing, by this point I was in some real pain.

    I spent almost all of yesterday on the couch since I couldn't move properly and I was up at 3am in pain.

    So has anyone here got any experience with these types of rib injures and any advice on recovery/future prevention? Also are they normally this severe?
  2. Dead_pool

    Dead_pool Spes mea in nihil Deus MAP 2017 Moi Award

    See your Dr incase its something else, no sudden movements, few weeks off karate, no cardio, no weights, try not to limit your breathing much, (painkillers may be appropriate, espec an nsaid) as lung infections are quite common if you do.
  3. VoidKarateka

    VoidKarateka Valued Member

    No obvious bruising and in decent health otherwise.

    Gonna end up crawling the walls unable to train (already been given my orders off the missus to rest so I'll milk that for all it's worth!).
  4. Devley

    Devley New Member

    Haven't experienced that but I attached a link to a great cold wrap. I had a bruised rib and used this wrap all the time. Just a suggestion on something that may help with the discomfort instead of painkillers. Good luck in your recovery.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 3, 2015
  5. VoidKarateka

    VoidKarateka Valued Member

    Thanks for the link on the packs. I've been strapping an ice pack (that came with a nice order of meat from Westin Gourmet) to my side with bandage.
  6. inthespirit

    inthespirit ignant

    I've had this issue a few times before. For me it can happen if I use breathe forcefully during exertion while not coordinating my movement in a complimentary way.

    To me the effect feels like the diaphragm can't move freely and consequently the breath is restricted, and painful. Quite unpleasant.

    I've managed to sort this out relatively quickly before by using trigger point massage, basically a muscle knot that pulls the soft tissues in the area out of balance, or that's my layman understanding. Massaging can release these points / spasms and alleviate some, preferably all of the effects. This is a good source of more info.

    However, you should probably see a physio or some other such professional to make sure there is no serious problem and to check thatthat massage won't cause any harm.

    Anyway, it's pretty simple. You will need a massage tool, a tennis ball or another small, relatively dense ball will do. I use one of these:

    This diagram marks the trigger point with an x, and the referred pain pattern with red, increased colour density indicating increased pain:

    Place the ball against a wall, and lean on it with your back, specifically around the areas marked x (trigger point), if the trigger point is active, it will intensify the pain, slowly massage it with a moderate pressure.

    You should feel some relief after a few minutes of this. I will normally do this a few times a day until it's better.

    Can also try the other points mentioned here, they may also be involved.

    Another useful thing to do is some deep relaxed breathing to bring awareness to the muscles restricting your normal breathing pattern. Have a look for diaphragmatic/abdominal breathing, there's decent resources online.

    We have a few members who work professionally with these sorts of things, Late For Dinner comes to mind. Maybe they will chime in too.
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2015
  7. Dead_pool

    Dead_pool Spes mea in nihil Deus MAP 2017 Moi Award

    You've been trying to flog these for quite a few posts now,
    So are you employed by them, or is it your brand?
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 3, 2015
  8. Hortone2321

    Hortone2321 New Member

    Thanks for the share. I think it's a really good option!

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