Referred pain from mid-back or rib strain
Referred pain from the ribs are often associated with neck pain, or pain radiating to the shoulder or arms or chest, and can also sometime give pain deep inside the chest, simulating pain from the heart, lungs, stomach or oesophagus.
Chronic mid-back pain
Chronic or long-term pain occurs when there is usually no injury, often due to poor posture, long periods of slouching. It can also be associated with postural deformities, Dowager’s hump or related to text neck, which pulls in the middle back. Treatment needs to consist of some Chiropractic treatment, but changes to poor work habits of slouching are essential, and Alexander Technique can help in this regard. Other causes relate to increased kyphosis or curve in the thoracic spine, large breasted women or carrying loads repetitively for many years.
Acute mid-back pain
Acute mid-back pains can often give intense sharp pain and be simply horribly painful! The good news is that the pain does usually settle quickly, especially with Chiropractic treatment.
Common causes are:
- A twisting movement, such as turning in bed, twisting around in the car to reach something on the back seat, twisting at golf (trying to hit the ball too hard?)
- Sneezing, or severe coughing
- Sitting twisted for long periods of time, such as slouching twisted on the sofa or bed
- Lifting work with repetitive twisting, such as:
- Digging in the garden, especially when we are not used to this kind of strenuous work, and ending up doing it for too long…
Rib Fractures ⚡️and Muscular strains
Rib fractures or muscular strains are the most common cause of acute mid-back pain. My experience is that a rib strain can be as painful as a rib fracture, if there is severe acute muscle spasm involved. Patients are often surprised, as they say there was no injury, I just woke up with the pain, or got up from sitting (slouching). With both rib fractures and strains, Chiropractic can dramatically speed up the healing process and help prevent the weeks of pain turning over in bed at night or getting up out of the arm-chair.
Rib, Costovertebral or Costotransverse Joint Strain
Please note the medical word for rib is ‘Costal’ or ‘Costo‘. The ribs attach and articulate to the mid-spine at the costovertebral joint and costotransverse joints. These joints can sprain and cause pain in the back, commonly to the side of the spine, near or ‘under’ the shoulder blades.
I’ve put my rib out!
The feeling or a rib ‘going out’ displacement or subluxation, usually occurs at the costovertebral or the costotransverese joints. What happens is that the supportive ligaments around these joints are sprained or stressed, which can again follow trauma, or simply due to prolonged bad posture.
Chiropractic ‘adjustments’ can often help tremendously to release the tension in the associated tight spinal joints and intense muscle spasm.