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Dr. Das, MD
Dr. Das, MD, Doctor
Category: Medical
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Experience:  MBBS, MD, with wide experience in all aspects of medical treatment, including cancer therapy.
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I have a question about a fractured rib. Me and a coworker

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Hi, I have a question about a fractured rib.
Me and a coworker were working together one day and had a great sale together. I was excited and approached my coworker with a hug. Im a 5'8", 23 yr old male, 210lbs, (not alot of muscle though) and my coworker is 45yrs old 5'0" thin female. when I gave my coworker a hug she immediately stated she had a sudden chest pain. I then let her go.
Of course I did apologize and she wasnt really worried about it. Later on that day she said her chest still was hurting and she was afraid i broke a bone or something. She was also worried about having surgery. As the day went on she was fine and was laughing with everyone and said it hurt her to laugh. Anyways, the next day she went to go see a doctor and the doctor said she had a fractured rib and a pulled muscle. Of course she stated that it was my fault that she was in that condition. I did feel bad, but everyone was telling me not to feel bad because she was also complaining she was lifting stones for her yard that weighed 25lbs each and how her fiance was getting mad at her for lifting that heavy weight. My question is, Did I really fracture her rib or was it a ticking bomb waiting to happen and I managed to push it?
A few facts to know:
1) I hugged her pretty tight and did lift her off the ground
2) Her fiance is like 3.5 times bigger than she is.
3) She always over exaggerates on everything, especially when it comes to pain.
Please answer my question for this situation is killing me inside
If you need any more details, let me know...
Welcome and thank you for the question.
I am sorry to tell you that a tight hug can cause a rib fracture, especially in thin people who do not have much muscle or fat to protect the ribs. There are also other injuries which may occur , ranging from a dislocation, to a tendon/ligament injury, to bruising, to a hairline fracture.
Lifting heavy weights generally do not cause a rib fracture, as the arm muscles take much of the strain.
In your case, since you did not do it on purpose, I do not think you should feel bad about it. Rib injuries are quite common and since she is not in much pain,it is probably only a hairline fracture which is not very serious.
I hope this helps.
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