My very first symptom of this painful week started 8 days ago. I had been off work for a few hours and started experiencing dull, burning pain in my right trap muscle which became much more painful after a few hours. The pain eventually radiated to my right arm above my elbow and to my lower ribs in my back on the right side. The pain only occurred when I inhaled. My arm had full range of motion and no sign of injury or muscle cramps.
The next day I started developing other symptoms: nausea, fever, chills, body aches, a deep cough with phlegm, runny nose, nose and chest congestion. The upper shoulder and rib pain would appear at random points throughout the day, getting more painful every day, and only eased by taking Motrin. It got so bad that I would cry and get headaches from it. I went to the doctor, had a flu swab and chest x rays, and was diagnosed with bronchitis and an upper respiratory infection. They couldn’t explain my pain so they prescribed a Z-pack, Claritin, and an oral cough suppressing gel tablet. After 2 days most of my symptoms started to disappear or ease at least.
Then, today, I woke up with such severe, sharp stabbing pain in my right lower ribs, mostly in the back and side, that I cried and moaned in pain. Straining to get out of bed sent a sudden sharp pain throughout the whole back of my right lung like burning electricity and I had to call out from work. It felt like my lung was crushed on the bottom and I couldn’t expand it fully. Hiccuping, burping, and inhaling would send sharp sudden pain throughout the bottom of my right lung in the back and also deep in my trap muscle and upper shoulder. A few hours later, I was short of breath but yawning was impossible as I couldn’t take in a deep breath. I was standing up and tried to at least do a small yawn to get some air, but my body kind of forced it into a full yawn.
When that happened, it felt like the bottom of my lung was being stabbed and squeezed in some of the most shocking pain I’ve ever experienced, and then it felt as if the painful area spasmed or expanded or something. Suddenly all the pain was gone and I could breathe, yawn, laugh, etc. with no pain at all.
I took 2 naps after that as I was exhausted from the pain. Both times I woke up with the same severe stabbing pain in the exact same spot, and getting up out of bed was extremely painful. But this time within a few minutes after standing up and walking around, my lung would spasm or expand and “fix” itself each time. The thought of laying back down scares me, seriously.
The only way I can describe the feeling of it “fixing” itself is that it feels like the bottom of my right lung is glued together from the inside, then suddenly comes “unstuck” and the pain is gone, aside from occasional soreness in my rib area and trap muscle when I inhale. Throughout these 8 days, I have not had an ounce of chest pain so it’s been hard to find out what’s wrong.
I can’t afford to keep visiting the doctor as I have 3 children and limiting health insurance so I really need help or advice. Sorry for the long story, it’s just hard to explain. Thank you and I look forward to hearing from someone!