UPPER Back Pain

by Dr. Halland Chen, MD

Although upper back pain is rare amongst most people, it is a medical condition that can cause a great amount of pain and discomfort. In general, upper back pain is rare because the longest part of the spine, from the base of the neck to the lower portion of the rib cage is not used for movement. Instead, this part of the spine is used to provide support for the body when standing, and to create a cavity to house the majority of the major internal organs.

Most injuries occur in the lower back and neck, which are used for mobility, twisting and turning. When an injury or long term alterations to the upper back occur there are a variety of symptoms that often require upper back pain relief; the symptoms of upper back pain include burning pains and numbness in the limbs and torso. These symptoms usually cause the painful symptoms that require a consultation with a medical professional to provide upper back pain relief.

The upper back is known as the thoracic spine and is made up of 12 vertebrae, discs separating the vertebrae and a series of muscles and tendons. Most pain in the upper back is caused by an injury to the region of the body, muscles strains and poor posture. For most people with thoracic pain a thorough examination is required by a medical professional, who will search for a reason for the pain and try to provide help for upper back pain relief.

Some of the rarer causes of thoracic spine pain include herniated discs that can reduce the amount of support provided for the vertebrae by the spongy discs found between the 12 bones of the thoracic spine. When the discs move out of position within the upper back there is a loss of protection from the shock of moving the body in everyday movements, when this occurs a medical professional is required to help return the back to its previous condition.

Seeking help with upper back pain should be something anybody suffering pain does quickly when the discomfort begins. Along with the damage being caused to the back other issues can also appear, such as sleep problems as the discomfort makes it difficult to both fall asleep and stay asleep. Other issues include depression caused by long term pain, which is capable of disrupting relationships and causing problems in both the private and personal life of the back pain sufferer.

Learn more about Back Pain