Help diagnosing a sudden, sharp abdominal pain from injury?
July 15, 2014 6:07 PM Subscribe
A middle-aged female neighbor, Rachel, fell down a long flight of carpeted stairs yesterday while sleepwalking. She seems okay and says she's very fortunate as she hit everything several times including her head. They made the decision not to go to the hospital and we neighbors did our best to help. Today she's doing very well but we wonder from her description of a sharp pain upon landing whether she might have a fractured rib. I've already read this
post about rib fracture.
posted by R2WeTwo to Health & Fitness (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
When it became clear that we were not going to convince her to go to the ER we (three neighbors, one an RN) did the best we could to evaluate pupils, vision, bones, and anything else we could think of. She says she never lost consciousness once the sensation of falling woke her. We reached her less than an hour after the fall but we had her husband check her temp. throughout the night because of something curious she said. When she landed at the foot of the stairs, on her back with quite bit of force, she felt a big, sharp pain in her abdomen, as if something snapped or burst. It subsided immediately. The spot is hard to pinpoint because she's tender everywhere but it's definitely in the upper left quadrant of her abdomen, perhaps as high as the lowest rib, which is our RN's best guess. Rachel says she's not sure but she thought it might have been deeper inside than her ribs. She's had no fever and her urine, BM, and breathing appear normal. She says she's pulled something (she doesn't recall the name) in her ribs from coughing before and this was much sharper and more painful.
Could this be anything apart from a rib, knowing you're not her, or our, doctor?