Diaphragm spasms?? 2/19/2008 2:39PM Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
During my last cross season I was having some issues with cramping on my right side- (deep & under my rib cage) I saw one physical therapist- they thought I had strained my intercostal muscle- but I'm pretty sure they were wrong, the therapy they did, helped to ease the pain-but it never went fully away. I took 2 weeks off when season was over, kind of hoping it would fix it by it's self if I didn't stress it, but it didn't. I have since switched physical therapists and my new PT believes that it is actually my diaphragm that is the issue. I can feel a knot right under my rib cage right next to the mid line of my stomach.(last set of ribs, approx 1 inch under my rib) hopefully that makes sense. He called it a spasm of my diaphragm and recommended doing some massaging in that area to break up the tissue- he showed me by putting pressure on the spot that it is most likely the problem. (It's causing me to have little stability in my right ab while running fast- which then throws off my stride causing my left arch to collapse, he showed me the chain basically) Has anyone else ever dealt with this or heard of it. I understand how to massage the area- I just wondered if there is any other things I could do to help it to get better faster.

RE: Diaphragm spasms?? 2/19/2008 3:28PM - in reply to AB Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
I'm dealing with the same thing. I still don't know how to fix it and its been annoying because for 3 races now I have been doing really well and then all of the sudden my right side develops a horrible sidestich that I can't run through and has caused me to DNF. it really sucks I thought it was just a water thing but now have been doing some research and i hear it happens on the right side because the liver rubs against the diaphragm and causes a spasm (or what we call a sidestitch). its quite horrible sometimes my friends think i just make it up or that i can at least try to run through it but its impossible.
RE: Diaphragm spasms?? 2/19/2008 3:36PM - in reply to MMjrKenyan Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
I know the pain is different from a normal side stitch- it's like your being stabbed under your ribs. NOT FUN!
sc runner
RE: Diaphragm spasms?? 2/19/2008 5:38PM - in reply to AB Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
I actually feel a pain like that in between my lower ribs, also on the right side. I don't feel a knot like you do, but the right side of my chest will sometimes feel tight. Massaging the area will probably help.
Tidal Tuberosity
RE: Diaphragm spasms?? 2/19/2008 6:04PM - in reply to AB Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
Are you sure it is not costochondritis? I am dealing with this and it is driving me nuts. I have to get a back x-ray and evidently that can be a factor with it as well. My pain is just like yours, occasional sharp pains that become constant stabbing pains just below my ribcage whenever I run at a harder pace.
RE: Diaphragm spasms?? 2/19/2008 7:06PM - in reply to Tidal Tuberosity Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
I'm not exactly sure what it is, all I know is what my PT said. I have never heard of costochondritis, what is that?
RE: Diaphragm spasms?? 2/19/2008 7:08PM - in reply to AB Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
Is your back discomfort near your rhomboid muscle, because I get a lot of tension there on my right side as well- I thought they could be related. My rhomboid will get tight causing my right shoulder to dip a little- but I can usually pop it almost 100% back into place myself- just by cracking my upper back.
PBJ Time
RE: Diaphragm spasms?? 2/19/2008 8:31PM - in reply to Tidal Tuberosity Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
I had the same problem last cross season, under the right ribcage, sharp pains at faster paces (and even on average or slow training days, basically whenever I was running). I ended up going to numerous doctors over my school's fall break, a sports medicine doctor finally told me it was costochondritis, and I was prescribed 800mg Ibuprofen to handle it. It worked for the most part, but my training had suffered, when the pain finally went away it was back to business as usual. However, now into indoor season, it came back, so I'm back on medication for it. Hoping it clears up by conferences.
indoor runna
RE: Diaphragm spasms?? 2/19/2008 8:55PM - in reply to PBJ Time Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
I experience the same pain during cross country only. I'm not sure if its the longer races or the outdoor weather. All i know is that if you take deep breaths and make sure you get all the air out of your lungs, and make sure you get the air deep into your diaphragm you usually are good
Tidal Tuberosity
RE: Diaphragm spasms?? 2/19/2008 10:11PM - in reply to PBJ Time Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
yea costochondritis scares me.....basically because i dont understand how one gets costochondritis. Anyway I have been dealing with it for 4 months now and is not one of those things where it just disappears after time. In reading your account of it though that sounds like what I have for sure now.

To not completely sabotage this OP's topic - have you had your back checked out? Also see a sports medicine guy if you haven't yet.
PBJ Time
RE: Diaphragm spasms?? 2/19/2008 10:54PM - in reply to Tidal Tuberosity Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
Yes, to the OP, definitely look into costochondritis as a possible explanation. The trainers here have told me that with both costochondritis or any intercostal strain, it's hard to give an outlook of recovery time/cross training because it's dealing with muscles used in the breathing process (i.e. even while sleeping, you're using them). Before I knew what it was, I just trained through it (3 1/2 month problem), and probably did more harm than this time around where I got back on medication right away. I'm interested though, in other peoples' experiences with the condition and how it compares.
RE: Diaphragm spasms?? 2/20/2008 6:57AM - in reply to AB Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
I suffered with something that sounds like this for years and years, but now it just seems to have gone away. A very good physio did reckon they found some tissue that needed breaking down in the area. I tried to do this myself and it may have improved it a bit, as did generaly strengthing my stomach muscles through sit-ups and the like. In the end it did seem to got away as I got older and when I started running better, by which I mean when I was in my late twenties and started doing extra milage for marathons.

I've a feeling, though I've nothing concrete to back this up, that over time my style changed to a slightly shorter stride and this reduced side-to-side movement in my upper body. Certainly when I still had the problem, thinking about running with a relaxed upper body and a straight back seemed to help.

Not sure this is much use but good luck.
RE: Diaphragm spasms?? 2/20/2008 4:22PM - in reply to phstenning Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
Well it's good to know that other runners have suffered with the same issue and I'm not crazy. I looked into costochondritis and it definitely has a lot of the same symptoms- but I also read that costochondritis usually occurs on the left side, but that was only on one site. I just hope it will just "go away" for all of us & soon!