September 5th, 2013, 08:04 PM
Serious chest and back pain after shooting
I went out the range yesterday and shot 30 or so arrows while waiting for friends to arrive (no stretching or warm up of course). I haven't been shooting that much lately so I intentionally stopped before I was worn out. I shoot a 70 lb Mathews Drenalin and have experienced a sore back and shoulder before when I overdid it, but nothing like this. Was planning on shooting a walking course later but never made it. My friends arrived and I watched as they spent maybe 30 minutes shooting and tinkering with their bows. While I was waiting, the right side of my chest started to hurt - right where the ribs attach to the sternum. It got more and more painful, then spread to my back - kind of between my shoulder blades - worse on the right side. The pain kept building until it was hurting so bad that I started to worry that I might be having a heart attack or something. But honestly, it felt more muscular than anything. I left early and thought seriously about going to the emergency room. I took a few aspirin and within 10 minutes or so it started to subside. The rest of the evening was fine and today my chest muscles and back muscles are sore (and sore to the touch). I came home from work early today as I couldn't stand to sit at my desk hunched in front of a computer anymore.
I've done a bit of reading online and it appears this is not uncommon among archers. Planning to take some time of and use ice, a TENs unit and NSAID's to manage pain while it heals. I'm wondering if I'm experiencing costochondritis or something similar. Very painful and very alarming.
Would be interested in hearing about the experiences of others and how long this takes to go away.
September 5th, 2013, 10:14 PM
You should go to a cardiologist asap and get checked out just because the pain declined doesnt mean a thing you could have a blockage waiting to kill you. The sore muscles could of been be accompanied by a cardiac event and camouflaging the symptom.
Dont want to alarm you but if its not just sore muscles....well you know
September 5th, 2013, 10:37 PM
Your heart is a muscle.....
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September 7th, 2013, 02:53 PM
OK so after 2 days of worrying about it I decided to go to the Doctor to get checked out. Urgent Care immediately referred me to the emergency room so I traveled across town and checked in at Sacred Heart. It was a very busy night but a complaint of chest pain got me moved to the top of the list temporarily. My EKG was normal so I went back to the bottom of an every growing triage of patients. Not complaining, I'm a patient guy and don't have any problems at all with other more seriously patients being moved up. Long story short, I checked in at around 6:15 PM, checked out around midnight. Blood tests normal - no enzyme or protein marker for heart attack. CT scan normal, no plaque build up in the arteries that can be seen. Dr wants me to follow up with a stress test as the final rule-out test. Diagnosis, chest wall pain caused by over exertion during an archery shoot. Best part, I have some peace of mind (except for the bill that's coming :-( Also met a good Dr who I think I will be working with on some other health issues. I think I'll go out and have a bacon cheeseburger to celebrate :-) Still would like lo hear from others who have had similar experiences. Any particular course of treatment advised to get back in the game with lower risk of re-injury? Just treating with NSAID's for now.
September 7th, 2013, 04:27 PM
Maybe your over bowed or your technique/form is off. Sounds like you have a major muscle pull.
Good to know your heart isn't throwing in the towel though! Might be worth taking some time off shooting. Annoying I know, as I have a duff shoulder, but it's not worth ruining your chance of ever shooting a bow again because you were impatient.
September 8th, 2013, 12:36 PM
Taking a little time off from shooting to heal up then will gradually start up again. I went from almost no shooting for months to shooting 75 or so arrows a couple times a week at the same draw weight from last season when I was in in better shape. I'm 6' 230 lbs with a muscular build so a 70 lb bow has never been a particular challenge for me unless I just completely overdo it. Getting old is hell but I guess it's better than the alternative. Time to get back to the gym.
September 13th, 2013, 09:54 PM
Def a good thing you got checked out to clearvny major medical issue. If it doesn't feel like a pec pull it might be a rotated vertebrae/rib issue. Drawing a bow is an asymmetrical movement and you can rotate a vertebrae or displace ribs. Muscles between the ribs can spasm making the ribs stick where they are. If you run your fingers down your rib cage you might be able to feel if one is sticking out or sunk in depending on which way it is stuck if that is the issue.
September 14th, 2013, 02:13 AM
Also wondering if it is you pulling a muscle. Glad that it wasn't anything major.
September 17th, 2013, 08:01 AM
Oh that's not good for your health so check out it from the doctor.
June 28th, 2014, 09:41 PM
Came across this old thread and it brought back memories. The injury healed fairly quickly and a month later the bill for the ER visit came in. Total bill was just under $20,000. The biggest cost was for two CT scans. My share was around $1,200. All to find out I was just fine. Treated it with Ibuprufen and rest. It was worth it for the peace of mind, but a sad comment on the cost of medical care in this country. I feel like the ER really fleeced my insurance company on this. No wonder the premiums are so high.
June 28th, 2014, 09:45 PM
Christ that number is ridiculous. Glad you turned out fine, though im no fan of obamacare, I do hope it ends up being successful for the sake of everyone. Im in the military so healthcare is free, but I can't imagine having to weigh the pain vs monetary concerns. Though im pretty sure the statistics run as high as 70% for those people who come in for stupid things.
Originally Posted by hauntedbyelk
June 28th, 2014, 10:20 PM
Wow that's steep! I guess it's always good to know that you're not having heart problems though. On a side note, can you remember if it hurt at all when you took deep breaths after this happened? If so, you could have had a rib shift out of position slightly. That can cause some pretty serious pain and discomfort.
Bear Anarchy HC
Bear Motive 6
60th Anniversary Bear Kodiak Magnum 40#
June 29th, 2014, 01:40 AM
I can definitely remember what it felt like. Taking deep breaths didn't really seem to make it hurt more or less. Tried to stay calm, breath evenly and relax, hoping it would pass. The pain kept building sort of like a bad muscle cramp, kind of like a back spasm or a bad leg cramp. I've had broken ribs before (lower right side) and that hurt like hell in a diffe rent way. Very unsettling to say the least. I usually have fairly high tolerance for pain but this hurt pretty bad.
July 1st, 2014, 03:35 PM
lower the poundage bro, im 26 years of age...and can easily draw 80#'s but i choose to shoot 53# because its easier to draw in the cold cold winter, im a better and more accurate archer, and down the road my shoulder will not be blown out from being over bowed....
also start icing that shoulder and doing some weight lifting with light weight and mix in some cardio to keep you loose...if you have a local sauna around dont be shy to hit it up to detox...even if you dont drink or smoke everyone has some kind of toxin in their body
Hoyt Dorado 50#
Ben Pearson Hunter 50#