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Learn about your spontaneous rib pain, including causes and common questions. Or get a personalized analysis of your spontaneous rib pain from our A.I. health assistant. At Buoy, we build tools that help you know what’s wrong right now and how to get the right care.

Spontaneous Rib Pain Checker

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Your Spontaneous Rib Pain May Also be Known as:
Chest hurts for no reason
Chest hurts randomly
Chest wall hurts for no reason
Chest wall hurts randomly
Random chest pain
Random chest wall pain

Top 8 Spontaneous Rib Pain Causes

  1. 1.Acute Costochondritis (Chest Wall Syndrome)

    Costochondritis is an inflammation of the cartilage that connects a rib to the breastbone. Pain caused by costochondritis may mimic that of a heart attack or other heart conditions.

    You can safely treat this condition on your own by taking over-the-counter pain relief medications such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil). Local heat or ice compress can also improve symptoms.

    Rarity:
    Uncommon
    Top Symptoms:
    rib pain, chest pain that is worse when breathing, chest pain, rib pain when moving, pain when pressing on the chest
    Urgency:
    Phone call or in-person visit
  2. 2.Panic Disorder

    Panic disorder is a type of anxiety disorder. It causes panic attacks, which are sudden feelings of terror without true danger. One may feel as if they are losing control or have physical symptoms like sweating or a racing heart.

    You should go see your primary care doctor, who can diagnose you by interview. Most people get better with treatment. Therapy can show you how to recognize and change your thinking patterns before they lead to panic. Medication may be beneficial.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    nausea, anxiety, abdominal pain (stomach ache), stomach bloating, depressed mood
    Symptoms that always occur with panic disorder:
    anxiety, impaired social or occupational functioning
    Symptoms that never occur with panic disorder:
    agoraphobia
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  3. 3.Normal Occurence of Chest Pain

    Many people experience chest pain and it's not always indicative of a serious issue.

    You most likely have nothing to worry about, particularly if you are otherwise healthy. However, it might be good to call a health care provider to double check. If the pain becomes severe, you have trouble breathing, or have a history of serious heart disease, it would be prudent to call 911.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    chest pain, rib pain
    Symptoms that always occur with normal occurence of chest pain:
    chest pain
    Symptoms that never occur with normal occurence of chest pain:
    being severely ill, shortness of breath, fainting, severe chest pain, crushing chest pain, excessive sweating, nausea or vomiting, fast heart rate in adults, slow heart rate
    Urgency:
    Phone call or in-person visit
  4. 4.Bronchitis

    Bronchitis is an inflammation of the bronchial tubes, the airways that carry air to your lungs. It causes a cough that often brings up mucus, as well as shortness of breath, wheezing, and chest tightness. It is typically caused by a virus.

    You can safely treat this condition on your own by resting, drinking fluids and taking acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) to alleviate fever and discomfort. If the condition lasts longer than a few weeks, or if your symptoms are worsening, you may want to see a doctor who may prescribe an inhaler or pursue other treatment options.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    cough, productive cough, sore throat, wheezing, coughing up green or yellow phlegm
    Symptoms that always occur with bronchitis:
    cough
    Symptoms that never occur with bronchitis:
    nausea or vomiting
    Urgency:
    Self-treatment

    Spontaneous Rib Pain Checker

    Take a quiz to find out why you’re having spontaneous rib pain.

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  5. 5.Bacterial Pneumonia

    Bacterial pneumonia is the infection of the lungs with bacteria (as opposed to a fungus or a virus).

    You should go see a doctor within the next day since this diagnosis requires a chest X-ray in addition to a doctor's assessment. Treatment with antibiotics is important to keeping the infection under control, which can become dangerous if it spreads or worsens within the lungs.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, cough, headache, loss of appetite, shortness of breath
    Symptoms that always occur with bacterial pneumonia:
    cough
    Urgency:
    In-person visit
  6. 6.Mitral Valve Prolapse

    Mitral valve prolapse (MVP) occurs when the valve between the heart's left upper chamber (left atrium) and the left lower chamber (left ventricle) doesn't close properly because the flaps of the valve are "floppy." Most people who have the condition are born with it.

    You should visit your primary care physician to confirm the diagnosis. Afterwards, a referral to a specialist may be needed to explore treatment options.

    Rarity:
    Uncommon
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, anxiety, rib pain, shortness of breath, racing heart beat
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  7. 7.Viral Pneumonia

    Viral pneumonia is inflammation (irritation and swelling) of the lungs due to infection with a virus. Community-acquired pneumonia is the most common type, which is usually acquired in public areas such as at work, school, or grocery store.

    You should see a care provider to be treated and for evaluation of severity of your symptoms. Viral pneumonia is NOT treated with antibiotics, and you may find over-the-counter medications for pain and fever to be helpful.

    Rarity:
    Uncommon
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, headache, cough, shortness of breath, loss of appetite
    Symptoms that never occur with viral pneumonia:
    unexplained bruising
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  8. 8.Lung Cancer (Non - Small Cell)

    Duplicate: Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is the most common type of lung cancer, which usually grows and spreads more slowly than small cell lung cancer. People with NSCLC have tumors in their lungs and may suffer from cough, chest pain, spitting up blood, and difficulty breathing.

    Duplicate: you should visit your primary care physician who will coordinate care with a cancer specialist (oncologist). Lung cancer is treated with surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy.

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    cardinal symptoms of lung cancer like chest pain or changes in breathing, fatigue, cough, shortness of breath, chest pain
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Spontaneous Rib Pain

  • Q.Is your chest wall pain getting better or worse?
  • Q.Any fever today or during the last week?
  • Q.Do you have a cough?
  • Q.If you presses on the area where you are in pain, does this make it hurt worse?

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions, check our spontaneous rib pain symptom checker.

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Spontaneous Rib Pain Symptom Checker Statistics

  • People who have experienced spontaneous rib pain have also experienced:

    • 25% Spontaneous Chest Pain
    • 5% Rib Pain
    • 4% Shortness of Breath
  • People who have experienced spontaneous rib pain had symptoms persist for:

    • 48% Less Than a Day
    • 23% Less Than a Week
    • 14% Over a Month
  • People who have experienced spontaneous rib pain were most often matched with:

    • 40% Acute Costochondritis (Chest Wall Syndrome)
    • 19% Normal Occurence of Chest Pain
    • 6% Panic Disorder

Spontaneous Rib Pain Checker

Take a quiz to find out why you’re having spontaneous rib pain.

Take a quiz