Do you have constant pain under your left rib cage?

Published: 08th May 2008
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Back pain under the left rib cage is a dilemma for all patients suffering from it. Doctors view any constant pain seriously and treat it as a serious disorder or disease. The rib cage is a structure that is formed by the thoracic vertebrae and ribs, sternum-breastbone, and the costal cartilages that connect the ribs to the sternum. A common definition of the term cage is a large enclosure where animals are kept. The rib cage can be considered as a cage that houses or holds the largest animal heart and lung, also called a thoracic cage in medical terms.

In the chest-thorax region, nerves spring out from the spine and divide into two parts. The first part goes to just under the skin and further sends fibers to the surface and also travels around half way around the chest. This is a probable reason for the feeling of pain in the back to the side of the chest. The second part travels to the bottom of the rib around the sternum bone, and also surfaces to the skin and then goes back towards the side on the same level as the first nerve. Rib cage pain can be any pain or discomfort in the area of the ribs.

Common causes could be - Cracked or fractured rib, Costochondritis (inflammation of cartilage near the breastbone, Osteoporosis, and Pleurisy. If you suffer from such problems of rib pain, it is advisable to get the area x-rayed so as to eliminate fractured ribs. In the event of fractured ribs an immediate surgery is warranted. If the pain is of longer duration more than 3 months it is also necessary to go for an MRI or CT Scan and consult health care professional to rule out the possibilities of any nerve damage, tumor or cancer.

Swelling of the cartilage in between the ribs and breast bone can cause pain around the back and also down the arms. The pain can be such so as to give out an immediate impression that you were having a heart attack or lung problems. Although for a short duration it can be very painful and uncomfortable during the period it lasts.

There are times when you might visit a specialist in gastroenterology because of the constant back pain under your left rib cage since the problem starts with your stomach. You often feel hungry and feel that a big growl wants to come out, no mater how much you eat it still does not become better, but instead gives you heart burn and pain on the left side underneath the cage. To eliminate any infection of the intestine or pancreas routine blood pathology should be conducted. Disorders of the digestive, gastro and bowel systems should be ruled out after seeking medical advice. These symptoms might make you wonder this it is due to twisted bowel, so a checkup of the colon should be scheduled.

The constant pain under the left rib cage can be very uncomfortable for pregnant women specially those in advanced stages. These women experience extreme pain in the area where the breast meets the ribcage. The pain results in extreme trauma and makes sleeping difficult.

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