My Stupid Back, Part 2... What's Going to Happen?

Updated on July 14, 2011
R.D. asks from Richmond, VA
16 answers

I called my husband, he's coming home, I'm going to the doc. This is awful. I took the kids the the library and about died driving (my back was killing me, not my driving!!) I literally had to white knuckle it; I was seeing stars by the time I got home (not smart, I know, but what's done is done). It's gotten so much worse.

My question is, what will any doc be able to do for me? I hate taking pain meds, they make me all zombified. I will ABSOLUTELY take them today if they offer it, just today, because my husband will be home... but seroiusly, if this is a broken/bruised rib (or worse, if I chipped my SPINE or something)... what can they do? Give me meds, tell me to lay down (LOL, LIKE THAT COULD EVER HAPPEN!), take an xray.... what can I expect?? I'm hoping this is muscular, but I really very seriously doubt I'm that lucky.

Have you injured your back? What happened when you went to the doctor?

Um, yeah... I'm a huge baby about seeing doctors, can you tell?! ;)

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So What Happened?

@Sitonme: My son swan dived into my back 3 days ago... it's been bruised, but now I can't move at all or breathe without serious pain!

OKAY!!... Went to the doc... xrayed my back... I have bruising on the INSIDE part of my spine (not inside my spine, but inside my body on the other side of my spine), which is pressing against my diaphragm, which is why it's so painful to breathe! I have to wear a rib brace for 2 weeks and take 3 different meds (muscle relaxer, rx anti inflammatory, and pain meds)... WOW I finally slept okay last night :) Thanks for all the info! Just taking it easy and taking care of my sick crazy baby ;)

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answers from Norfolk on

I'm glad you are going to the doctor.
If something's broken - a bone takes 8 weeks to mend.
You don't have to take pain medication, but 8 weeks is a long time to be feeling the pain you are feeling right now.
It might be over the worst of the pain in a few weeks - maybe meds for that long would be ok.
I worked with someone who had a few vertebrae fused in his 20's.
He'd be fine most of the time but every couple of years he'd get a wicked back spasm that would land him flat on his back on the floor.
He couldn't drive - he could barely walk - his wife would have to come get him from work and he'd be laid up in bed on pain killers for 2 solid weeks.
And then he'd be fine again for a few more years.
Please let us know what the doctor says.

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answers from Dallas on

See a chiropractor!! Despite popular belief, they don't actually have to "pop" you. (I know many people are scared of that, just thought I would point that out!) In my experience, it's much better to see a Dr. whose specialty is dealing with spinal issues, and treating those issues as efficiently as possible While pain meds help, because they decrease the pain...they only mask the symptom...and not fix the problem!! If you get the x-ray and the Chiropractor thinks it's an issue that is best treated by another specialist, they will NOT treat you, but refer you somewhere else.

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answers from Kansas City on

well I would go to the chiropractor instead!! Most doctors will give you muscle relaxers or pain relievers to get rid of the pain - a temporary solution!! I would see a chiropractor, and maybe you can lay on the floor with your legs and feet resting up on the couch. That might take the pressure off for a while, or sleep on the floor. I have had a lot of back pain in my life, and it was never really controlled well until I started seeing a chiropractor somewhat regularly. I'm sorry you are in pain!! I hope you feel better sooooooon!!!!!!

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answers from Charlotte on

Thanks for the update! Feel better! :(

You need xrays first. R., you might even need a CT scan to see if there is any disc damage - that doesn't show up on a regular xray.

When I threw my back out, I had to have both those things done. My husband had to pick me up off the toilet to keep me from screaming, my back hurt so much. Once we determined it wasn't a disc problem, that it was muscular, I went to a massage therapist while I took ibruprophen and muscle relaxers. My massage therapist (whose was actually a neuro-muscular therapist) was a little like a chiropractor in that she worked close to the spine. But she worked on my muscles. She got me back up on my feet.

I recommend you find out what is wrong with your spine, and take all the steps you need to fix this, including muscle relaxers, massage (drink tons of water after the massage - I kid you not!) and as you get better, consider some back therapy to help work out your muscles. You're young honey. You don't want this to become a lifelong thing with your muscles!!


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answers from San Antonio on

Do not go to the chiropractor unless you have ruled out a damaged disc. I had three bulging discs in my spine and one ruptured...I have never been in so much pain!!

A reputable chiropractor told me that no one in his field should even touch was a it will heal or need surgery issue. Too much damage for chiro to handle and could be made worse.

I had to have an MRI...expensive but worth it. Then spinal injections to lower the pain level. It finally healed w/out surgery but it took 7 months.

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answers from Tampa on

X-ray or MRI... meds until they know what it is. May take a few days between getting an order for an Xray/MRI and the Dr getting to see it and making a diagnosis.

DO NOT forget to mention your clavicle!!

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answers from Seattle on

Pain meds only mask the pain, they don't fix the problem! Chiropractic is all that helps me, and it's not scary! It's very important to take care of your spine, when a vertebrae is out of alignment, it can danger your nervous system, which controls all bodily function. The pain your describe sounds like a nerve pain. I've had it before and have been dove onto many times, it helps! Ice helps until you can get there and afterward, no more than 15 minutes at a time. I also do massage once a month because tight muscles can hold the spine in the improper position.

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answers from Saginaw on

After an injury due to an accident I have dealt with major back pain since, Lots of back spasms that render me usless. No joke it is the worst thing that could happened (o.k well not worst but pretty challenging) anyhow that can happened to a SAHM of three under 6 lol. You just kinda have to let go a bit until you heal. Not sure what could have happened to your'd better get in to find out even though you really, really do NOT want to I don't blame you! But you will have to take it easy until you heal, pain meds can be safe to use as long as you knwo your limit. They say 2 vicadine for me for pain, I can only take one and one is all I need for my small build. Hope you feel better soon! Glad your son is o.k.

also chiropractor is a MUST and do not let anyone adjust you without having an x-ray done first!

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answers from Sacramento on

I got a bruised rib from a horrible cold (due to excessive coughing) when I was pregnant with our second child. I could barely move. It was incredibly painful. Went to the ER and they put me on some sort of safe med that was still pretty strong. It helped a lot. I don't think they took an x-ray at the time because I was pregnant, but suspect they will in your case.

Good luck! Hope you get some relief soon.

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answers from Washington DC on


PLEASE !! let us know what happened!!!

I'm sooo glad that Rob was able to come home and take you to the I wanna know what they said?!

Cracked ribs? Dislocated disc? what?!?!?!?!

BIG HUGS TO YOU!!! (gently though - VERY gently!!)

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answers from New York on

My dad once hurt his back and it hurt so bad he could barely walk. I took him to the ER and he had a MRI done and they gave him muscle relaxers via injection on the butt! They said he had a sprained back and he just needed rest. They sent him home with muscle relaxer pills and he was fine within 3 days.

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answers from Washington DC on

Speaking with my massage therapist hat on now. Ice 3x/day. If you don't like taking meds there are some herbal and homeopathic remedies you can use for the inflammation and bruising. Arnica Montana pills, internally and the gel externally or Traumeel which also comes in pills and gel. Those would be for the bruising and soft tissue trauma. Zyflamend is herbal combination that comes in soft gels. There is also a pm formula. You can get it at Whole Foods, Vitamin Shoppe or order it on amazon.
Just spoke with a chiropractor who is a friend of mine. She suggests allowing the swelling and inflammation to subside before getting adjusted. After the swelling goes down, a good chiropractor should be able to check and see if you have a rib or rib head out of place. Easy adjustment.

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answers from Dallas on

Your doc is going to look at your symptoms, visually examine your back and maybe suggest an xray. There is a high probability he is going to jab you in the 'hip' with a muscle relaxer and send you home with the same plus some mild painkiller like tylenol 3.

The difficulty breathing is probably just pluracy. It feels like glass shards in the same location every time you try to take a breath. It hurts, but antibiotics can clear it right up. Drink lots of fluids!

I feel for you girl, that stuff hurts so bad! Good luck, LIE DOWN!! I know it's impossibly hard, but this one trumps that momma need to be UP.

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answers from Kansas City on

We are a family that puts our backs out. I've done it too many times to count, so has my husband and one of my daughters. We've never been offered pain meds. It's HORRIBLE and my last bout of it took 7 months to heal from. THEN, after all those months struggling with the never ending pain it moved into my sciatica. That lasted over 6 months and that was on the heels of spraining my ankle! I spent so much time in pain the last couple years that I've lived and breathed reading about Spiritual/Biblical healing. I've studied everything I can get my hands on and I am 98% better in every single way! God is so good.

I wouldn't expect a lot of help or relief from the Doctor. I'm sorry you are going through this.

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answers from St. Louis on

Ok, if its a cracked rib, they will send you home with pain meds and you will have to chill out. Like I said earlier (well not in detail) my husband fell off of a 6 ft ladder, the impact from the fall cause him to puncture a lung. Which, if you were laying on the floor and someone (even a little one) jumped on you, it could be the same impact. Not trying to scare you again, but he was in ICU for 3 days. He was FINE though, they just had to keep a good eye on it.
They will most likely take chest xrays. Doctors are scary, but so is hurting when you breath, make sure you get checked out! Everything will be ok, they wont do anything to you that will hurt. They will just make you better! Keep us posted. Again, not trying to scare you, but you might already know that im a freak. :)

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answers from Washington DC on

Make sure you get an xray of the sore area. I had problems for years. Finally got an xray done, and the tech was like 'so when did you break your back?'... um, what?

I ended up having back surgery in Oct. 2010.

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