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British Heart Foundation
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How long does it take before chest muscle pain stops?

I went into cardiac arrest for 12 mins I believe. The wonderful team that bought me back accidently broke my left rib. A very small price to pay for me. I got plenty of pain relief in ITU and cardiac ward. I saw dogs and cats, on patients beds. And tried to warn them pets would get them into trouble!

It's nice to be able to find something to laugh about when things are tough.

My heart is irregular hence the arrest. But I have still got muscle pain in my chest.

Varies from day to day. Anyone else have similar symptoms?

3 Replies

Hello msiobhan and welcome to the forum. Assuming you didn't have any surgery or stents, how long ago was this?


Only one rib? You were lucky! When it's properly done, CPR is a rough business. The pain takes time to go- as it would if you'd broken -or bruised- ribs falling off your bike or tumbled down stairs. The delusions that morphine brings on are weird; I had writing on the walls of the ward in a language and a script I didn't recognise and I was convinced that the nurses were rehearsing for a play. In another delusion I was in a movie! I can still remember the hallucinations and they still make me laugh. Sure you will have days on which you get aches and pains (we all sleep awkwardly for some time after CPR). But as a fellow cardiac arrest victim, I often think of the survival rate (lower than 10% I think) and am VERY glad to be allive even if I get the odd twinge.


I suffered cracked (broken) ribs when a car fell on me years ago. It was three months before I could use my right arm fully without pain and over 6 before I was pretty pain free. So it takes time...

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