Why do I get back pain while breathing?

Q. Why am I getting pain in the back while breathing?

Answered by
Dr. Shinas Hussain A. P
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Mar 12, 2017 and last reviewed on: Jun 15, 2023

Hi doctor,

I am getting pain, which starts in the right lower back. It hurts when I breathe and also when I stand, sit and sleep. I know that it is not kidney stones. But I do not know what it is. I am a 45-year-old female. My weight is 190 lbs. I am not on any regular medication.



Welcome to icliniq.com.

I have gone through your query, and I can understand your concern.

Pain over the back while breathing needs to be evaluated thoroughly. In most cases, it is caused by some minor condition like sprained rib or some contusion of the rib caused by minor trauma or fall.

Also, we have to rule out some other heart and lung conditions like pericarditis and pleural effusion.

I suggest you consult a general physician and do the following.

A short course of antibiotics may be needed. Other investigations may be necessary depending upon the initial evaluation, like the echo test to rule out pericarditis. As of now, you can take analgesics like Acetaminophen or Ibuprofen for pain.

Thank you.

The Probable causes:

The probable cause is minor trauma or a lung infection.

Investigations to be done:

I suggest you do an X-ray chest, ECG, and echo test.

Differential diagnosis:

Differential diagnoses can be pericarditis or rib fracture.

Probable diagnosis:

Probably it is a sprained rib.

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