Doctor insights on:
How Long Should Flail Chest Last
Until you're better: Ribs have to heal sufficiently to allow the thorax to function well enough for you to reliably breath on your own. Probably weeks. ...Read more
Trauma: Flail chest is caused by trauma to the chest, typically blunt force injury. The ribs are broken with this injury creating a situation in which it can be quite painful to breathe. Underlying injuries to the lungs and heart and structures in the chest may be associated with this and can help determine the managent strategy required. ...Read moreSee 2 more doctor answers
Pain control: Flail chest is generally treated with pain control to allow the patient to cough, deep breathe and clear any secretions. Pain control can be obtained with IV narcotics, oral narcotics, subcutaneous pain pumps or an epidural catheter. Recently, there has been increased interest in fixing the ribs with plates. The jury is still out on this but is appropriate in the right patient. ...Read moreSee 2 more doctor answers
Rib fractures: A flail chest occurs when several ribs adjacent to each other ate fractured and a segment of the chest wall are then able to move paradoxically. During inhalation, the fractured ribs are sucked inward and during exhalation, they move outward which is opposite of the normal rib movements ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Not get one: Flail chest is when 2 or 3 or more ribs are fractured in 2 or more places (definition varies). Major issues are controlling pain and maintaining oxygenation. Ribs will heal on their own usually-take 12 weeks, cause they move when we breathe. For severe cases, we utilize titanium plates internally screwed into the ribs to stabilize them. This is becoming a more common procedure in the last 10 years ...Read more
See below: Flail chest, multiple ribs fractured in multiple places on one side of the chest, can cause inability of the lung to expand on that side. Usually ventilator support and underlying lung healing will allow the ribs to heal on their own. Rarely surgery is needed to fixate the ribs if there is too much damage or lack of self-healing. Chest wound is treated with cleaning, suturing only if appropriate. ...Read more
Flail chest: Dangerous condition that occurs when part of rib cage breaks from the rest of the chest wall. This is usually due to trauma to the chest wall. ...Read more
Yes, but: Surgery for flail chest, when done, is usually for difficulty with ventilation. If you are not hospitalized and acutely ill, surgery is probably unnecessary. If you have a severe deformity from the rib fractures, a thoracic surgeon can offer options to correct that. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
See below: Pericardial tamponade is a serious emergency problem of fluid or blood collection in the sac around the heart, causing heart dysfunction. Myocardial contusion is a potentially serious condition of direct trauma and bruising of the heart muscle. Flail chest is a serious problem of multiple rib fractures in several locations on one side of the chest resulting in the lung to not expand correctly. ...Read more
1st rib removed. 2-4 resectioned. 5-6 separated from sternum. Is there danger in having 2-4 resection again? I have flail chest.
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