If you are wondering how many ribs does a man actually have, you’re not alone. In fact, there are a lot of questions regarding ribs in both men and women. In addition to the number of ribs, men and women also have 12 pairs of curved ribs. These bones are a vital part of the upper body, protecting vital organs in the chest cavity.
The ribcage is supported by a network of ligaments and muscles, which allow the ribcage to expand and contract while breathing. Each rib is connected to a vertebra in the back of the chest, called the sternum. The first seven pairs of ribs are attached to the sternum, while the next three pairs don’t connect to it directly. The last pair of ribs is attached to the sternum through a cartilage called the costal. The rest of the ribs are floating ribs.
Broken ribs are common injuries, and most often result from trauma. Sports injuries and motor vehicle accidents can also break ribs. Repetitive movements and severe coughing can cause a broken rib. In addition, rib fractures are common in people with bone-weakening diseases, such as osteoporosis. Cancerous lesions can also weaken bones. The best way to determine the number of ribs a man has is by consulting a physician.
The last two ribs are known as floating ribs, because they don’t have an anterior attachment. A fracture of a floating rib may lead to serious health problems, including damage to the liver, kidneys, and spleen. Each rib is attached to small external and internal intercostal muscles, which raise and lower it during breathing. A chest injury can tear these muscles and cause a condition known as costochondral separation.
While broken ribs can’t be repaired, they can be temporarily immobilized until the injury heals. Fortunately, pain medication can help relieve the discomfort until the ribs heal. The ribs protect the upper abdomen, which also contains the spleen and liver. If broken, a CT scan can detect the injury early enough to prevent surgery or amputation. In addition, a CT scan is useful in confirming a diagnosis, allowing doctors to prescribe treatment and avoid further complications.
Besides causing pain and difficulty breathing, broken ribs are life-threatening. They may need to be stabilized using crutches or other devices. When breathing becomes difficult, the damaged ribs can’t expand, allowing infections to sprout in the dark, warm place of the lung. Pneumothorax can lead to pneumonia, which can be life-threatening. You should consult a doctor immediately if you have any questions regarding the health of your ribs.
A chest wall ultrasound can detect subtle injuries in the chest. A doctor may perform a rib stress fracture during a routine checkup, but this scan isn’t always easy to spot. Some fractures are partial, and are hard to spot on a chest x-ray. An ultrasound can also help diagnose a rib fracture. If you suspect a rib fracture, the doctor will recommend rest and treatment.