Ribs shattering after radiation

greerray Member Posts: 1

My husband had stage 3b non small cell lung cancer in 2003.  He underwent chemo and radiation(over radiated) ultimately having entire right lung removed and left lung lifted above bronchial split.  He had many complications with the surgery most likely cause extensive burning inside due to excess radiation.  He was in a coma for a month and a half.  It took him a month after to learn to walk again and get off oxygen.  

Long lead in to my question...  no complaints about his survival it's been 15 years and we know he is a rare survivor this far out with his complications.  Starting this summer he began to have severe pain radiating from the incision around through his nipple.  After ct scans and pet scans the determination is his ribs are shattering.  The pain is from the inflation on the nerves.  He has already undergone 9 nerve blocks and will start a new course next week.

Ok finally the question... what do you do to mitigate the bone damage?  We have been told that the complications he is experiencing normally happens much faster.  We never do anything normal.  There is no information about this.  There is much information about women with breast cancer and rib cage issues Costochondritis but even that is an inflation of connecting tissue.

The ribs themselves aren't the cause of pain it's the nerves.  The damage is on the side with no lung.  We can see a great deal of spinal curvature as well.  His chest is noticeably atrophied without the muscles being used in breathing.

I suppose it's a blessing to be complaining so far out of a catastrophic illness but with the advances of medicine and increased success in treating lung cancer life after cancer and the ups and downs should be considered.


  • ClaCla
    ClaCla Member Posts: 136
    Ribs Shattering

    If you haven't already, be sure to "Search CSN Content" (top right of page) on the topic of fractured ribs after radiation.  Best success and God bless.