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Rib injury


Wish
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  • Baller_
Well, just took a digger into the wake left side of body under greatest load to the line. Rope failed. Not something I would have ever predicted and I do check my rope. So my question is, is it worth going to the doc. From what I gather, there really is not much they will do. Yes it hurts. Can tolerate it without meds so far. Pain spikes some when moving around. Spikes more when pulling on something with left arm. I would say very little if any spike when taking a deep breath. Pain seems pretty localized to where ribs attach to chest plate both in front and in back left side. Any thoughts? Recovery time? This sucks.
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  • Baller
When I did it , I did go to the doc. He basically said nothing he could do. If I wanted I could go get X-rays just to know for myself. So I opted to go home. Pain sucks. Don't watch any comedies and avoid allergies !
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  • Baller_

Of course I will zero in on what I want to hear like..skip going to doc and skiing within 2 weeks and basically ignore the rest..haha. But seriously, thanks for the feedback so far.

 

@Than_Bogan I felt great, the water was the tiniest of ripples..perfect, full sun, 85 air 78 water and the first 32 was just off the charts good. This was gonna be a several cracks at 38 day for sure. The way the 35s went a few days ago, I can't imagine less then 4 at 38 if not running some. Second pass 1 to 2 ball ..snap..CRASH!!! Driver knew it. Was back to me before I could turn my head back in his direction. Stayed in the water for a while. Never got the wind knocked out of me but was in some good pain. Did get up on the platform on my own but guessing things had not fully set in yet. Oh well. It happens I guess.

 

@6balls thoughts?

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  • Baller
I go to the doc anytime I might have broke a rib and get an x-ray. (Typically this is a snow ski accident for me). If it isn't broken then there isn't much they can do, if it is broken then there isn't much they can do but you can at least make an educated decision if you really want to risk finishing it off or jamming it into something important.
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  • Baller

@Wish - Sorry to hear about your ribs. Bruised or broken ribs really suck. I hope you heal fast!

 

Years ago I broke 6 ribs, punctured a lung, and broke my hand. They surgically fixed my hand, but did nothing about my ribs except for heavy duty pain meds. I was back skiing 6 weeks later, but they were tender all summer. Hopefully yours are just bruised, and you can get back on the water sooner.

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  • Baller

This is an injury that I have dealt with too often over the past couple of years. During this past winter, I was discussing with one of my best friends, who happens to be an orthopedic surgeon.

 

He was mentioning that there are some recent studies which show that topical, Voltaren style gels are effective at controlling the pain of rib injuries and may help speed healing by reducing inflammation.

 

He did point out that these applications are available by prescription only and are about 10x the strength of over-the-counter Voltaren (which probably won't do much of anything at all).

 

So if/when this happens to me again, I'm definitely going to go looking for a prescription for this type of medication.

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  • Gold Member

Same thing happened to me Dec 3. I was told mine were cracked because the pain was "worse" than if broken. The first week, a sneeze would bring me to my knees and tears. Sleeping on my left side was a no go.

 

I didn't ski for 6 weeks. I don't ski at your level/intensity etc. I wasn't worried about more damage. I just wanted to get up and make some turns. So, I would listen to @oldjeep. You may want to gauge your return on possible future damage.

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re @jcamp's comment: When my dad had a bad rib issue, he declined the opiod painkillers and then they told him he really had to take them because otherwise he wouldn't be able to breathe deeply enough to heal. (Off topic but: He got the hell off that $#@% as soon as he was allowed to, and even that he found was fairly difficult. Damn those are addictive.)

 

If you can't breathe deeply, then a doctor visit may be in order for exactly that reason.

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  • Baller

@Wish

 

I feel your pain, I really do, I did the same April 6 training for a tournament in Chile. The problem is that I was stupid enough to ski in the competition 2 days later under heavy pain pills. I got a few buoys, but that was a bad decision, I left the water a lot worse than I was the day I got hurt.

 

After 1 week with the pills my digestive system told me I should quit (the good Chilean wine may have something to do with that also), anyway after 10 days I was feeling good.

 

Back to Brazil, on April 21 (2 weeks after) I decided to try to ski, I could do it under considerable pain, but again, that was not a good idea , I feel like I got back a few days in my treatment.

 

Fortunately next weekend will be wet and cold, so I will probably only ski next tuesday, or 4 weeks from the day I got hurt.

 

So, if you want my opinion, wait 3 weeks before getting back to water.

 

 

 

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  • Baller
Rib injuries hurt. I would hit the Dr. up for some pain meds to help sleep. It's up to you. Won't get quality rides with the pain , yada , yada , yada. You ski year round don't you ? A few weeks off is nothing. I've been off the water for medical reasons for 10 months. Or wrap your ribs and GUT it out. You do preach GUT skiing. Reinforces the fact that we should replace our ropes every year. Regardless of how they look. That could be a new thread. Get well soon.
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I've had several separate episodes of broken ribs(motocross). Go and get the xray. You cannot judge just from pain alone. I had a punctured lung from a rib break. Not something you want to risk. Plus this added injury untreated will just add to your recovery.
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  • Baller_

Yeah that sucks. I've had that type of crash/injury half a dozen times. Avg recovery time is 3 weeks and the worst part is virtually nothing you can do to shorten it. Ice, anti-inflammatory or cortisone injections help some, but won't cure it. Sneezes or coughs can put you on your knees.

 

About the only thing you can do is limit activity and wait it out. If it really still hurts after a few days, a trip to the doc may be in order, but don't be surprised if the recommendation is "don't do anything that hurts for a few weeks".

If it was easy, they would call it Wakeboarding

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  • Baller
@Wish happend to me 6 weeks ago and took an Xray at least you know what to deal with and take responsible action with your body. Rich or poor we only have one body....I had only bruise so took 10 days off and back to ski. No pain killer bcause your body tells you when it is too much. Voltaren is a good help. Good luck and patience, it will take probably 2 months. You can still write comments on the forum......good news for us, I like your comments it helped my skiing
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  • Baller
Try getting on a steady diet of advill for a week. 3 times a day as long as your stomach can tolerate it. If your lucky you could be out of it in a week or two. If there is a rib broken 6 weeks it is. Doesn't really matter either way.
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  • Baller
Doesn't help, but it may be torn cartilage. Same result. Get yout self a band/ strap that goes around your chest and put it on tight. Help with the pain, especially,if you cough or sneeze. You may feel like skiing in a couple of weeks.
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same here (years ago)... nothing they can do..... but you can still ski !

 

Skiing did go ok, try to skip the start (haha... really hurts) and do not fall.

Not recommended by the way (one good fall and you rib is gone again).

 

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Not a terribly encouraging thread.

 

First day out last Sunday 5/22. I took a bad digger into the wake on my gate. Right side of the ribs took the impact.

 

I can breathe deeply, so will keep doing that. I can sneeze without going to my knees so I guess that is good. I can even sleep on the right side if I do it all just right. Overall hard to believe with this level of pain, that I broke anything. The length of time for recovery is pretty discouraging.

 

Biggest bummer is that this was the first day out for the year and I am needing to get some time on the ski. Going to a clinic with @CParrish43 here in Colorado in 2.5 weeks...

 

Dang!

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  • Baller_
I probably slipped back into the water about a week to soon. Hell getting pulled up out of the water. Basically just did lean drills. Was thankful for some windy days after. The few sets after that I learned to take a very deep breath and hold it while being pulled up. Once in the course not to bad. I'd say at present date 90%. Not bad at all really. Guessing not broken. Also have stayed at 32 with a few 35s mixed in. Forcing myself to concentrate on technique vs buoy count. Falling is still a fear but falling that way seams highly unlikely. Time is the unfortunate key I guess. I certainly did not want to hear that but seems to be the case.
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  • Baller
Followed my own advice Monday after eating the wake - hurt like hell to breath. Still pretty sure the x-vest minimized the damage, hit really hard. One cracked rib and some torn muscle, by far the mildest rib break I've had but you could see it on the xray. Guess I'm out for at least a few weeks. Not too bad now as long as I don't laugh too hard or cough.
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  • Baller

Ive either torn cartilage or bruised my ribs in a buoy strike 1 week ago. Tried to ski yesterday. Got up with just a little pain but in the course I couldn't do it pain was too sharp crossing the wake.

Are there any exercises to speed up recovery or is it just time. I think it's pretty minor but 1 week was not enough. How long do ribs take to heal. Tournament in 2 more weeks

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  • Baller

if it's cartilaginous in nature near the sternum (mid-line) then it could be a few weeks. If more laterally located it's usually micro-tears of the intercostal muscles (insertions along the ribs), those typically are skiable in a week or two.

 

IMO deep breathing "exercises" (slow inhalation and hold at the point of discomfort for a few seconds) a few times/day helps to keep things loose. It's also a good gauge of the healing progress; tolerable, deep, held inspirations indicates skiing is ok. Pull-ups are another good indicator of readiness.

 

Rx = tincture of time; duration variable.

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  • Baller

Did the same thing Sat but landed on my eyeball.

What @Gloersen said, and if it hurts to lift your arm I would get a pulley and start some passive range of motion to prevent building scar tissue resulting in a potential frozen shoulder. This can also mobilize the intercostal musculature and aide in getting blood flowing there and ready for the 'load'.

 

This may or may not help -passive range with pulley

 

 

 

 

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Wish

 

Yes I know the pain well, I have managed to do that without the rope breaking!

 

Some of the basics like, sneezing and coughing are no fun, sleeping , lack of skiing all adds to the torment. As Bruce said, three weeks and start to build it up slowly as you will be tentative on that load side.

 

My physio recommended breathing exercises after he popped my ribs back into my spine, it was my back pain that was most debilitating. This did not appear immediately, but later into my recovery, ~2 weeks. Might be worth a trip to the physio and check out all aspects of your rib cage. Although you hit the front/side quite often its the back that takes the damage. A week after that I was back on the water. It is worth the cost to get you well soonest.

 

Sorry this is no consolation but get well soon, we need you and your input back on the lake.

 

Regards.....Robert

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Rib injuries are tricky. Not much they'll do either way but you'll know how to adjust your activities if it's more than bruised. I broke mine in hockey and came back early and ended up much much worse. If your body is telling you something, listen to it.
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  • Baller

It's weird. I can do a pull up with no pain.

Only thing that hurts is pulling with the left arm. On side lean.

Would it be beneficial to pull on a handle on the dock lightly before any pain starts or should I just rest it.

There is a hard lump just left of my sternum that is tender to push on.

 

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  • Baller

The last one I cracked took about 3 months to go away. Might be because I made it much worse about 2 weeks after it happened.

Take it easy or risk making it last longer, ribs take a long time to heal and if you mess up the cartilage in your sternum it takes even longer.

If you crack a rib then you may want to refrain from a mud run, and you may seriously want to not do this. I guarantee that it'll be really tough to breath after the landing.

ozlz14z0qze9.jpg

 

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  • Baller
Stupidly decided to do some footin off the boom over the 4th July weekend. Took a couple bad falls , woke up with some mild rib pain. Took 4 days off and felt pretty good on Friday. All it took was two passes and I was done. What was mild has now turned into constant pain. Think I'll be out for two weeks now darn it !
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  • Baller
Two weeks may be pushing it, but take care. Last Saturday I had a sudden deceleration from 50 to near 0 on a jet ski and jammed the right side handle bar into my ribs as I left the vehicle. Goes from feeling pretty good to reaching behind the truck seat and getting stabbing pain. Think it is just a bruise/connective tissue this time. One week until our yearly ski/board week at the lake and im not sure if I should go up and risk ending the season (again). Side note the radar x-vest makes a pretty good handlebar guard, few marks in the jacket but I think it helped a lot. Picked up one for my son yesterday at Midwest MC.
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  • Baller

I've cracked a rib before & it was 3 weeks for me then I skied a bit with just jumpers behind the boat to be on the water again..

I even looked into getting a rib protector or flak jacket as they say to wear under the vest but not sure if or how that would work?

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I am just getting back to skiing after a minor injury. Through this, I've found out some info which I'll share, in case it's helpful to anyone.

 

1) Symptoms: Pain in chest/ribs on my right side. Pain breathing deeply. The "spot" was hard to identify - I could feel it in the back and the front. Pain increased as I continued skiing for a couple of weeks until it was really bad after an 8-pass slalom set where I was very afraid I had really done some damage.

 

2) Cause: Unknown. But, the timing corresponds to me changing the way I do deep water starts. Before the pain began, I had a slight bend in my elbows (thus using my biceps a little on the get-up). But then I started really straightening my arms on the get-up. Discussion with my PT about this and he agreed that more straight arms would put more pressure on the back muscles. So...now that I've started skiing again, I have gone back to the slight bend in the elbows.

 

3) Treatment: I went to Physical Therapy and found out that a rib was out of place. He could tell by feeling each rib and there were 2 ribs much closer together (not evenly spaced) like the other. Apparently, if you have more pain on the inhale, a rib is "down", or more pain in the exhale, a rib is "up". He did massage and cupping on my back muscles to try to relax the muscles. He recommended daily massage (@jpattigr) and cupping plus exercises.

 

4) Exercises: (1) Side bend/stretch with deep breathing. (2) Lay on back. Bend 1 knee and then cross that knee over to the floor on the opposite side. (3) Lay back on a pool noodle with knees bent and feet flat on floor. Deep breathing and then rock knees side to side. Move the pool noodle and repeat inch-by-inch (rib-by-rib) up and down the back.

 

5) Results: After 1 week off and faithfully and patiently doing these exercises daily, I'm back to skiing pain-free. I know this won't help for broken ribs, but perhaps can help anyone with minor rib injuries.

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  • Baller

@a_bax Thanks for posting!

 

I'm dealing with a rib out of place right now. 7 weeks in and I'm almost healed but not quite.

 

I've had 5 rib injuries in the last 2.5 years, 4 from skiing.

 

This time I bought this and I hope it helps prevent them in the future:

 

https://www.evoshield.com/en-us/protective-gear/rib-shirt/adult-performance-rib-shirt

 

 

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