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COPD & cramps

I have been having rib cramps since being diagnosed. I have also had prior history of chronic costochondritis, very bad cramping of the ribcage.

I did notice now when this happens more often with really cold weather, breathing in cold then going into warm they will start more so. Summertime I don’t seem to get these cramps hardly at all, if I do they are not significant. Now with that being said, I have started to wear tank tops under my clothing to keep my ribs warm even when it’s slightly cold, or a insulated vest to protect my ribs. It has helped immensely! I would love for someone to make something soft and warm, not tight!, to wrap my ribs in to help prevent this pain we all endure or at the least to keep them from getting real bad.

Now another thing I have learned along the way is trigger points on the sides of sternum, where the rib connects, trigger points will truly stop the cramps, you may have to hold fingers there for quite some time – up to 10 minutes – but it is way better than the pain, find your spot. Heating pad helps as well.

Good luck folks, I am always finding ways to tolerate, I am at stage 3 COPD and have been for a few years now!

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  • Meaghan Coneys moderator
    3 years ago

    Hi Natty,

    Thank you so much for sharing your story with us! To reiterate what Leon stated, we definitely appreciate you sharing your tips and tricks you use to mitigate the pain associated with rib cramps. I am sure other community members will find it very helpful. Again, thanks for sharing your story. We are so happy you are a member of our community. Sending loads of good energy your way.


    Meaghan ( Team)

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    3 years ago

    Hi Natty and thanks so much for posting the methods that you find helpful to cope with rib cramping for yourself. I’m hopeful other community members will read and benefit from your post.
    I thought you might find it interesting to see what others have said about rib cramping as well. Here is the link to the article:
    All the best, Leon (site moderator)

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