The pain associated with a broken rib usually occurs or worsens when you:
- Take a deep breath
- Press on the injured area
- Bend or twist your body
When to see a doctor
See your doctor if you have a very tender spot in your rib area that occurs after trauma or if you have pain with deep breathing or difficulty breathing.
Seek medical attention immediately if you experience pressure, fullness or a squeezing pain in the center of your chest that lasts for more than a few minutes or pain that extends beyond your chest to your shoulder or arm. These symptoms may indicate a heart attack.