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Thread: broken rib

  1. #1

    Question broken rib

    hi, everyone

    i broke my rib leaning sideways in my wheelchair. i was given oxicodone 15mg to control the pain and the doc doesn't wanna go stronger. the med isn't taking care of all the pain and i am in quite discomfort, especially when i change positions in bed.

    is there anything else that i can do, home remedies, whatever?

    thank you so much for any help
    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing" ~ edmund burker

    c4-5 quad

  2. #2
    Not much you can do other than limit activity that causes you pain and take medications. Ask him if NSAIDs are OK (they can inhibit bone healing) to use in addition. How often are you taking the Oxycodone?

    Do you have a rib binder on? This can help quite a bit with pain. Just be sure that you are removing it at least twice daily for skin inspection.

    Also, it is common to get pneumonia due to atalectasis (collapse of small air sacs) of the lungs with a rib fracture, esp. if you are on bedrest, because you avoid taking deep breaths (it hurts). Even though it hurts, you should be using an incentive spirometer every other hour or so when awake.


  3. #3
    hi KLD,

    thank you so much for replying. the only NSAIDs i have taken are advil and aleve before i went to the doctor and they didn't do anything to mitigate the pain.

    even though i was intructed to take the percocet every 4 hours, it makes me vomit a lot and i get constipated, so i am taking it every 8 hours or so with an otc nausea pill.

    i didn't know about the rib binder. do you know of any website where i can see a pic or where i can get one?

    i think i have that respiratory device you mention. it was given to me in the hospital one of the times i had pneumonia.

    yes, i am in bedrest.

    thank you!
    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing" ~ edmund burker

    c4-5 quad

  4. #4
    Sorry you're hurting, Lola. Hope you feel better soon.
    It is easier to find men who will volunteer to die, than to find those who are willing to endure pain with patience.

    ~Julius Caesar

  5. #5
    thank you so much for your post, hipcrip!
    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing" ~ edmund burker

    c4-5 quad

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    I broke my ribs in the same accident that caused my sci. I think they hurt more than anything else I was dealing with then!!

    So I really feel for you. Watch your lungs, but otherwise, I think just moving your torso as little as possible. Of course watch for sores, especially if you are positioning yourself different.
    T7-8 since Feb 2005

  7. #7
    Call your physician back and tell him about the vomiting. This is not healthy for you, and there are other strong pain meds you can take for a short term period while you go through the worst of this pain. If you take an NSAID, it would be best to take it routinely, not as needed, but this should be coordinated with your physician. Take senna to counteract the constipation of opioids (short term while you are taking them).

    Failure to treat acute pain properly is not acceptable in today's health care climate. If you go to a clinic or hospital for care, you should ask to speak to the patient representative about this. The Joint Commission takes this VERY seriously!

    Here is a rib belt. They look like a very narrow abdominal binder:

    Your doctor should have suggested one of these, or you should have been given one in the ER as it is well-known that these help significantly with rib fracture pain.


  8. #8
    Senior Member goat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Georgia, USA
    A TPro Forcefield Rib Protector was helpful to me.
    "Let your food be your medicine" - Hippocrates

  9. #9
    sjean and goat, thank you so much for the advices/posts.

    KLD, i called my doc's office, and was told to continue the oxicodone, take it with a nausea pill as i was doing and to also take some tylenol with the combo, to give it more power.

    i will send away for the rib binder, i think. i didn't get any positive insight from the nurse at the doc's office about it though. oh well.
    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing" ~ edmund burker

    c4-5 quad

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