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Intercostal neuralgia is an annoying pathology and it is the result of damage or malfunction of the intercostal nerves; this condition causes a characteristic pain in the intercostal area (at the level of the ribs). It is also known as an intercostal aneurysm.

Intercostal neuralgia is a form of neuropathic pain. Intercostal nerves are nerves belonging to the peripheral nervous system that originate in the spinal cord.
It’s main function is to innervate the muscles of the rib cage, the skin that covers the chest, and the tissues of the chest cavity.

Who treats intercostal neuritis?

A real doctor of Chiropractic can take care of your intercostal neuritis.

Chiropractic offers effective treatments based on vertebral, thoracic or rib adjustments, isolating the root of the problem and locating the subluxation responsible for the ailment. Removing mechanical pressure on the intercostal nerve releases the nerve. The manipulation is painless and allows the patient to achieve immediate results.

Causes and symptoms

The possible causes of intercostal neuralgia are numerous. Among these, blows and direct trauma to the rib cage deserve a special mention. In these cases it is important to rule out a possible crack or fracture of the ribs.

  • Compression of one or more intercostal nerves. Here we talk about mechanical compression. When the intercostal nerve endings are compressed by a displacement of a rib, a dorsal or thoracic vertebra, the surrounding tissue can be inflamed. Compression due to a tumor should always be ruled out, hence the importance of visiting a true health professional.
  • Chest trauma, which damages the intercostal nerves. Strong blows to the rib cage can damage intercostal nerve endings, crack or fracture one or more ribs and cause breathing problems.
    The traumas capable of determining such consequences are those that can occur during contact sports (such as rugby, soccer, american football, etc.) or at the time of a car accident (due to the pressure of the seatbelt) or a motorbike or bicycle injury.
  • Intercostal neuritis due to anxiety. In this case, the intercostal muscle is tighter due to stress or strain and this can irritate the intercostal nerve. In the same way, if you are tense or anxious, your diaphragm is more tense, which leads to irritation of the intercostal nerve.
  • During pregnancy. As the fetus grows,the expansion capabilities of the rib cage are reduced and this can momentarily alter the normal functioning of the intercostal nerve endings due to over pressure.
  • Rib infections. Due to infectious diseases of the bones.
  • Herpes zoster infections. Herpes zoster is the virus that causes shingles and chicken pox in children. One of the peculiarities of this viral agent is that it hibernates inside different nerve ganglion structures and, in turn, activates itself, even after a long time, due to physical and psychological aggression. The neuropathic pain caused can become very intense.

Other symptoms can be added to intercostal pain, such as: tingling, numbness, back pain, pain spread between the chest, arm and left shoulder, etc.

An accurate diagnosis of the causes that trigger intercostal neuralgia is essential to plan the most appropriate treatment.

Chiropractic is a profession in the field of health with a natural and preventive approach. Trust your chiropractor to recover your well-being.