Chronic mid back pain wearing away

April 3, 2014

Hello Guru
I’ve had mid back pain for a year now (2013-14), slightly to the right of the spine – usually a dull ache, wearing, but not hugely painful. It is constant and hasn’t progressed over the year.
It seems to centre between the shoulder blades (especially after sitting for a while), or a little lower, say T10, after I’ve slept, or when walking. The ache isn’t altered by any particular movement – although I do have a twinge when I twist down to the right. Anti-inflammatory drugs have no effect at all. I sleep okay though – lying on my side eases things.
I’m 50 years old with a history of aching back complaints (including the mid back), though they’ve always come and gone before (the only recent injury was a frozen shoulder type thing I had between January and June last year).

I’ve got a CT scan lined up, do you think they should be looking for
something in particular?
Cheers and thanks in advance,

April 3, 2014

Hi Mark

I doubt where you feel it, is where the problem sits.

90%+ of patients who have this have a neck issue, rather than a thoracic issue.

You’ve got a really stiff thoracic spine, which forces you to look slightly down. To compensate for this you poke your chin out to look forward (you don’t lift your chest up, as your thoracic spine is stiff).

This constant poking you chin out irritates a joint in your neck or stretches the front portion of a disc in your neck – both of which give pitch perfect referred pain into your thoracic area.

CT/MRI won’t show very much as it’s a functional issue (sitting down) and lying down, when scanned is pain free.

Chest up, screen up, stop slouching 😉

….really sorry for the delay

The Guru
Six Physio

Guru Responded

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