How do I Know if I Have a Broken Rib?

How do I Know if I Have a Broken Rib?

The ribcage is one of the most important part, and plays one of the most vital roles as far as the human anatomy is concerned. This is because the ribcage, which comprises of twelve ribs on each side, helps create a protective shield around the heart and lungs, protecting them from potential injury and trauma. The importance and crucial role the heart and lungs play in our bodies need no further explaining and as such it is easy to therefore see just how important the ribcage is. Given the important role they play, ribs are very strong and sturdy and are linked together by bands of muscles further strengthening the structure of the ribcage. However, despite all this, if one takes a hard enough blow to the chest area, it is possible to break a rib or even more than one in some instances. A broken rib is a medical emergency as it could lead to life-threatening complications due to damage of blood vessels or internal organs and as such it is important to seek immediate medical attention when you suspect you may have broken a rib or two. It is therefore important to be in a position to know when you may have suffered a broken rib given the consequences. This article will therefore come in handy as it will look to provide you with the necessary knowledge that will help you ascertain if you have broken a rib.

One of the key symptoms to look out for, one that will indicate to you that you have suffered from a broken rib is that you will feel immediate pain around the ribcage area the moment you suffer a blow leading to the injury in your chest area. Another way to know if you a have broken a rib is to check on your breathing. If you have suffered a broken rib you will find that you will begin to experience pain when breathing and especially when breathing in, since this is the action that leads to expansion of the rib cage, that is it moves upwards and outwards, as is covered in detail by the subject matter experts over at It is also recommended by the same experts that even though one may be feeling pain when breathing, it is important to try and breathe normally and avoid taking shallow breaths so as to help clear mucus you’re your lungs and prevent chest infections. You are also likely to feel pain when you laugh, sneeze or cough, which are other clear signs that you may have definitely suffered from a broken rib.

Other signs that indicate that you may have broken a rib include tenderness, swelling and bruising on the skin on the chest. You are also likely to experience stinging or severe pain if you touch or press on the area or spot where your rib is broken. Another additional action that you can perform that will enable you to know if you have a broken rib is by bending or twisting your body. If you have a broken rib, the pain you are feeling will worsen if you bend or twist your body. Another indicator that you may have broken a rib is if you hear a popping or cracking sound at the time of the blow causing the injury on your chest. It is important to seek immediate medical attention as soon as you suspect you may have broken a rib in order to avoid complications that come with it such as injury to blood vessels and internal organs such as torn aorta, punctured lung and in the case of fracturing of the bottom two ribs, serious damage to the spleen, kidneys or liver as per the subject matter experts over at

Apart from the physical examinations above, another way to tell if you have a broken rib for sure is through diagnostic exams administered by the doctor. This include listening to your lungs when you breathe, as well as taking images of your chest with the help of image testing devices. The latter includes taking an X-ray which can catch up to 75% of all cases of fractured ribs as well as other additional issues such as a collapsed lung, a CT scan which will show fractures that won’t be able to be seen through an X-ray as well as damage to soft tissue and underlying organs, an MRI which satisfies the same duties as an CT scan as well as a bone scan which will be able to reveal if you have a stress fracture to a rib which may be a lot harder to identify; with all of this imaging techniques looked at in great detail over at

It is important once you are diagnosed with a broken rib, you take plenty of rest to allow the rib to heal as well as following all the instructions given by your doctor including how to sleep and the clothing to wear among others. Hopefully this article will help you in identifying if you have a broken rib, with more on this and other related topics to be found over at


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