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Ask Dr.Saurabh Joshi Your Own Question
Dr.Saurabh Joshi
Dr.Saurabh Joshi, Doctor
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 4665
Experience:  Physician,Neuro and Vascular Interventional Radiologist
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I have sharp pain in my right rib cage when coughing. Why?

Resolved Question:

I have a sharp pain in my right rib cage when I cough, breathe deep or sneeze. It feels like someone is stabbing me with a sharp object and I double over it hurts so much. I don't have any symptoms of being sick with the flu other than being very tired. The symptoms get worse throughout the course of the day and generate around my rib cage in the front to my back area by night. Do you have any idea what this may be? Its been going on for about 2 weeks. I was diagnosed with a "bullae" in both my lungs about 2 months ago and this is making me nervous. Can I be sick with pneumonia and not feel symtoms or is it my lungs.... I am also trying my hardest to quit smoking.... any suggestions would be GREATLY" appreciated (maybe this is from smoking and the bullae is aggravated again... gosh, I don't know). What should I do and what do you think it may be? Thank you with all my heart.

Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Dr.Saurabh Joshi replied 8 years ago.

This can be an infection of the lungs, a pneumonia or an infection / inflammation of the pleura, the coverings of the lungs that causes this type of pain.
This can even be due to a strain of the intercostal muscles of the thoracic cage.
Please visit a general physician for a chest examination and a Chest x-ray, that will be able to shed more light on the cause of your pain.
I hope this answer helps you.

Customer: replied 8 years ago.

What are the "intercostal muscles of the thoracic cage" and how can one tell if I strained them? And why am I having gastrointestinal problems? I guess your saying its not related to that.

Expert:  Dr.Saurabh Joshi replied 8 years ago.

Intercostal muscles are the muscles between the ribs. They can be strained by a long standing cough or a chest infection. This would cause pain while moving, taking deep breaths etc.
You might be having a stomach virus / indigestion that is unrelated to your chest symptoms. This bloating can be caused by a cholecystitis, an inflammation of the gall bladder.
Please get a chest x-ray and an Abdominal Ultrasound Examination, that would help in detecting causes of your chest pain as well as bloating and gases.

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Customer: replied 8 years ago.

Thank you. I sincerely ***** ***** opinion. I feel better now after talking to you. I was really scared so thank you from the bottom of my heart