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Author Topic: Lower rib cage pain...thinking the worst.  (Read 13327 times)

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Offline nikol373

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Lower rib cage pain...thinking the worst.
« on: October 17, 2011, 06:38:07 PM »
Hey all,
I'm hoping someone can help me out this time. I've worked through the large portion of my problems lately on my own...but I have a very *real* symptom that I just can't make heads or tails of.

For about two months now, I have had very tender lower ribs, on both my right and left side. This wraps all the way around to my back. If I press them, there are very sore spots, and I can almost feel bone / cartilage / muscle moving when I rub it. Depending on my position, it almost feels like there is a ball of fat under my right ribs - and when I scrunch that side up, it feels like there would be a "mass" there...but there definitely is not one. It almost feels like tight muscles, but I can't be sure. My anxiety has had my thinking that my spleen and liver must be enlarged, but I don't know. I had a CBC mid-september that came back normal except for slightly elevated white count that came back normal on retest. I figured if it were my liver, something may have shown up on that.
I have had a bunch of back / spine cracking issues lately and I was wondering if it could be related to that at all.
I'm away at college and my real doctor is back home, so it is hard for me to get home to get checked out...and it's a pain to do so if this is all my anxiety.
My ultimate fear (at the moment...has been since the elevated WBC count.) is luekemia. Those of you who have worried about such a thing before know the correlation between hepatosplenomegaly (thank google for that one.) and leukemia.
I have heard people mention costochondritis and myofacial pain / fibro. - but I just don't know how to differentiate between that or actual liver pain. I'm really scared, and it's interfering with my life.

Please help??
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Offline Ravens Lady

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Re: Lower rib cage pain...thinking the worst.
« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2011, 07:14:43 PM »
Few questions:

How are  your joints in general? 
Are you double jointed? 
Are any of your joints flexible or hyper mobile? 
How is your spine? 

The reason I as, and my story:

I have a clicking and popping back, back pain, and sometimes rib-cage pain.  I also have hyper-mobile joints (my doctor just told me that).  I've always been this way since childhood but it started causing me pain and back problems in my mid 20's. 

Some people are very blessed with strong ligaments and connective tissues and good healthy backs.  Apparently my father passed on his double jointed and hyper-mobile joint issues to me and now I have problems with staying in alignment.   My flexibility was great for dance classes, but now it sucks! 

Sometimes I have pain in my rib cage.  I can sort of 'feel' when something is out of place..  I don't worry or stress over it anymore.  I just try to avoid activity that messes me up (like heavy lifting, running, jumping.. etc)  Eventually it lessens.   Stress can also aggravate it and make it worse.

Yeah, it can FEEL like an organ or something having an issue, but it can be your ribs and back instead.   And plenty of people have these problems without having diseases.   



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Offline nikol373

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Re: Lower rib cage pain...thinking the worst.
« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2011, 07:21:10 PM »
Funny you mention that. I have hyper-extension in both knees, and painful hip joints...I used to do the splits all the time.  I did have a problem with my back over the summer, that seemed to turn into problems in my ribs...
I was on Wellbutrin for a while and it messed up my stomach muscles. Ever since then, I've had that weird side-feeling.

I still think it is something with my spine / joints. I mean...when I'm not worrying irrationally...that it what I think,.

Thanks for your input!
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Offline hamsterswheel

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Re: Lower rib cage pain...thinking the worst.
« Reply #3 on: October 17, 2011, 07:24:50 PM »
Hi Nikol

I have just posted about the same problem at my ribs. Mine is my right side.

I have been examined 3 times by my doctor. She said its my floating rib. Its does protrude slightly in comparison to the left side but that its nothing to worry about. Mine is sorer with heavy lifting and bending for long periods of time. It becomes very sore when I poke and prod endlessly, trying to tell the difference and convince myself its a rib and not a mass!

I have also been to a chiropractor about it who assures me its a rib. She told me it is badly inflammed from what I have done to it 'investigating it constantly'. She said the cartilage between my ribs is also bruised. She said something like this can take months to go away.

Do I believe the two experts? Course not I have HA! I worry its my liver too as I have a cyst on my liver, which has been ultrasounded twice and an mri scan.). So I suppose its unlikely to be caused by my liver and more likely the reasons the doctor and chiro have given.

I think its actually quite a common thing. Also when you have lukemia as its a ca of the blood, your wbc numbers would be trebbled and more. (My doc told me this). Given that yours on re-testing were good, then there's no way its lukemia.

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Offline nikol373

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Re: Lower rib cage pain...thinking the worst.
« Reply #4 on: October 17, 2011, 07:29:37 PM »
Thanks for your reply. I've wondered about the floating rib thing. The fact that its the same exact spot on each side kind of makes me a little less worried about the liver thing. and I'm not jaundiced or anything like that....

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Offline hamsterswheel

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Re: Lower rib cage pain...thinking the worst.
« Reply #5 on: October 17, 2011, 07:41:36 PM »
Yes very true.

I actually met someone in his 30s at a wedding the other week who did have serious liver problems(not sure what but apparently he had a transplant when he was a teenager) and there was no mistaking it. His skin  was an awful shade of oraange/brown/grey and sooooo thin that his bones and veins were showing through. The guy just looked so ill beyond believe and apparantly he was getting better!! So I guess for us worrying about the liver then its so unlikely.
In my case my cyst was found 1year ago so I guess I would have visable signs by now!!
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Offline Ravens Lady

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Re: Lower rib cage pain...thinking the worst.
« Reply #6 on: October 17, 2011, 08:11:20 PM »
Well, from what you are sharing this sounds like its due to your spine and joints issues which are affecting your rib placement, and probably nothing more.  I don't think you really have any valid reason to be suspecting Liver issues or anything else.  (at least from what you have shared thus far). 

(and when your joints, back, or ribs are out of the place the muscles have to compensate for the lack of alignment and they stay in a tense state for too long which can cause more aches and pains.)

I have a good chiropractor that is really good at getting people back into alignment and he's quick and to the point.  I go to him every once in awhile when its really bad, but I don't normally see him. 

I think you should relax over this a bit.  Feel better soon.   :happy0151:
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Tags: liver rib cage tender 
 

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