“Doctor, I’ve had this pain between my shoulder blades for two months now. It just gradually came on, and I can’t seem to get rid of it. I put heat on it, tried to stretch it out, but nothing helps.”
This is the typical story of many patients who come to us complaining of pain between the shoulder blades. The bones in the Thoracic spine (midback) are not as vulnerable to injury as those of the neck or low back. This is because they are supported by the rib cage. Despite the added protection, however, pain between the shoulder blades is a common ailment and requires expert treatment to prevent a chronic disorder from developing.
Sometimes pain is caused from old chronic injuries such as sports injuries. Twisting the torso beyond its normal range of motion can wear muscles that connect the vertebrae together, leaving a weakness in that area of the spine. Many people have congenital scoliosis (curvature of the spine) in varying degrees. When they are under stress, the body loses its ability to compensate for the curvature.
Pain that gradually develops without apparent cause is usually the result of the chronic postural stress of the spine. It may be from long distance driving or even hours of sitting in an awkward position. Sometimes even a rib will become dislocated. This usually causes more intense pain and will be aggravated on taking a deep breath, coughing or sneezing.
Whatever the cause, pain between the shoulder blades can be one of the most annoying and aggravating of symptoms. It may even keep you up at night. You never seem to find a comfortable position. Every time you move in the wrong position the pain causes muscle spasm which causes more pain. It’s a vicious cycle. When the pain is caused by nerve pressure from the spine or rib cage, it requires expert care to correct. Chiropractors are the only specialists trained in the precise manipulative procedures needed to remove the cause of the problem. Many patients feel relief immediately after the adjustment. If you have pain between the shoulder blades, get your spine checked today.