Slipped Rib Pain/Prolotherapy Treatment
I have been experiencing "slipped ribs" for 2 years now. It occurred about a year after I had been in a car accident where i was rear ended and suffered from upper back and neck muscle spasms. When those healed I started feeling pain in my rib cage it could be left or right side mild or severe enough that it hurt to inhale. A friend sent me to a chiropractor who uses gentle hands on manipulative pressure to put the ribs back in place. She doesn't crack me or any of that stuff. She has been a tremendous help, but at 47 I am frustrated and tired of going along ok and then out go several ribs. I have loose ligaments along my rib cage probably from the trauma of the car accident and the rib cage protecting my upper area when it was so tight from spasming. Lying flat on your back all night can make you wake up feeling as if your ribs are broken! But if you lie down for an hour or two and nap you may wake up with the rib back in place. I bought a latex bed that adjusts the head and feet and it has been a godsend. I sleep with the head of the bed elevated and the feet and it takes the pressure of lying flat all night as I can no longer sleep on my side or it feels like my ribs are going to cave in and can trigger a nasty abdominal muscle spasms from a rib popping out.
She sent me to our local hospital to see a spine specialist. She has recommended a treatment called prolotherapy. She said it has been a very effective treatment as it's intention is to create inflammation by injection of an irritant solution at the weakened ligament. This creates new blood and cells to go to that area to heal the "injury". What happens is new fibers are created and wrap around the weakened ligament pulling it tighter back to the spine so the rib no longer is weak enough or I should say the ligament and the rib no longer slips. Of course insurance doesn't cover it so right now I can't afford the treatment (here $280 a month for six months treatment program) But I'm getting so tired of this constant rib pain that I'm getting ready to try it.
Has anyone had any experience with prolotherapy, are the injections bearable and how about the localized pain. She said the injection sites would be sore for up to 7 days and you can't take NSAIDS because you don't want to interfere with the inflammation response in the localized areas. It's that response that helps create the new fibers. Apparently ligaments can be increase by as much as 40% or more in strength. I've received encouragement from my chiro and PT to do this, as they've seen it help many people with ligament problems and especially if you suffer with slipped rib syndrome. Ligaments don't tighten back up on their own you can only exercise and strengthen the muscles around them to hopefully help hold them in place but that's a viscious cycle because if I lift or stretch too much of course a rib will slip.
For now I keep going back to my chiro to have the ribs placed back and experience relief from anywhere from a couple of days to at one point this summer a whole month!! Best month of my life! Now I've been to her every week because I got sick and the coughing bounced my ribs everywhere. Today my lower right floating rib is the culprit!
So any prolo advice from anyone?