Spare Rib Removal

Posted , 4 users are following.

I am very sorry to hear that so many people have had such problems following this surgery.

When I first complained of pains in my left arm, I was told to rest it, when the pain returned a plaster back slab was put on for a couple of

weeks, but again the pain returned along with numbness in tips of the fingers.

At this point I took myself to casualty where, not just by hand and forearm were x-rayed as before, but my neck and chest, I thought it was a joke when they said I had and extra rib on each side, but saw the surgeon a couple of weeks later and every six weeks thereafter, until a second opinion was requested, and drastic exercise was recommended, butt these were stopped during the first treatment due to the excess pain.

Within two weeks the original surgeon wrote to say he would perform the surgery.

By this time my hand and part of my forearm were numb, and I was having nightmares that I would loose my arm.

It was after the operation that I was told that the rib was like a razor blade and would have severed the nerve. I will always be grateful

to Mr B for saving my arm and the very neat 9cm scar left by one long stitch.

His initial reluctance was because it was the first time he had performed this surgery. All feeling returned to the hand and arm, although, being left handed, a small amount of strength was lost probably due to the length of time the nerve was stretched across the rib.

It was more than two years before the operation took place in 1965 when I was 19 years old - now 64

I can not understand why 45 years on, it still takes so long to diagnose and treat this complaint without coursing further complications.

Good luck and best wishes to all sufferers


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8 Replies

  • Posted

    thanks Chris - how are you doing now?

    I think maybe docs are much more cautious now, and they just don't want to commit.

    I have 2 c-ribs & they say it's everything but the ribs causing problems, anxiety & even menopause now, I'm pretty fed up!

    Luckily I'm on ATOSA forum where folks understand, so I'm still sane!

    The trouble is that they say it's rare - but hey! look at all these posts?

    I'm in a strange place, just waiting but hoping things don't get worse for waiting.

    Jane (Spareribs)

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  • Posted

    oh my god everyone is saying the same thing.. im so fed up of being in costant pain and been sent from one doctor to the next... i was told when i was 13 i had spare rib, i am now 38 and still going from doctor to doctor. ive never been able to make anybody understand the pain im going through.. because i look fine people think im putting it on and exaggerating... im so glad that ive found this web site because id started to think i was over reacting or going mad..
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  • Posted

    Hi there - you're not mad, well then we must both be mad - constant pain makes you a little strange I know. (try it mods!)

    Anyway just wanted to say - try an osteopath - OK it's a day's wages but just for a while - I finally got believed and things really did feel better (even 'tho I don't know what she did) God bless x

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  • Posted

    funnily enough after 13 years of constant nerve issues with my arms my osteopath today foudn what he thought was C-ribs on both sides in my neck and has instructed me to phone my doctors immediately to see if they can get me x-rayed...

    soI too say get a decent osteopath to check it out

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  • Posted

    Wow - 4 years on and my ribs are still there & not causing too much trouble (I hope). A thyroid nodule, low Vit D and B12 however DID cause a lot of trouble. J
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  • Posted

    Hi spare ribs, interesting about thyroid ! I have two spare cervical ribs of which are causing me loads of pain, of which have trouble moving my arms. I have had thyroid trouble for 20 years. are you on any meds for this besides vit D and B12. do not think the thyroid has any thing to do with cervical ribs thou ? The Thyroid is your starter motor just like your car ! if that is not working propyl the rest will struggle to !! has I know o to well. keep in touch
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  • Posted

    I was in a neck collar for years and it was weekly treatment from an osteopath that finally allowed me to take off the collar.

    I still have the ribs but 14 years on I can hold my head up without support.

    Does anyone else get blinding headaches from spending too long looking to the side? I have to sit directly in front of the TV and if I am at meetings have to remember to keep looking straight ahead. If I look up the table for any length of time my head explodes!

    Saying that I get headaches that can last for days. They sent me for lumbar puncture and scans but they put it down to the ribs/stress/maybe teeth grinding.

    I really do wonder if it is pot luck on the diagnosis sometimes.

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  • Posted

    Hi Bon123. sorry to hear about bad headaches, Mine is mostly in my arms -neck-collarbone's. lifting and stretching make it far worst, after I have been to work and done my house work or even tried to dry my hair I am left in server pain, and you say about stress, it also makes it really bad ! I get my results back from scans & x-rays on Monday, and I just pray I get some answers. because if not I am seriously thinking about giving up work. Cannot put up with this pain for much longer, it's been over a year now ! trouble with these consultants they don't ever see you when the pain at it's worst, when I am screaming in side praying for it to go away !!! Have you had any scan's or x-rays to confirm anything ??

    never except pot luck diagnosis !! always question it and if you have to ask for a second consultant to take a look, after all it's your health. keep in touch good luck

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