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Back Problems Message Board

Back Problems Board Index

I don't want to bore everyone with a long story but to keep it as short as I can, about one and a half years ago I had alot of dental work done and a few months later started having jaw and ear discomfort which has not been diagnosed but I believe is TMJ.
About a year ago I started getting upper back pain as well which has got progressively worse. Some days just my upper spine feels bruised and sore, other days the aching and discomfort spreads across both shoulders and I get shooting pains in my arms and legs and a crawling sensation across my back. I feel as if I'm carrying a big weight on my back and shoulders which is dragging me down. Sometimes the feeling spreads to my chest which feels tight and I start to panic I cant breathe properly. My chest muscles also feel sore to touch. Twice Ive been to A&E who've done chest x rays and ECG which have been fine and Ive been told its just stress or a panic attack.
Pain killers do nothing. If I try and stretch my back and neck it creaks and pops like mad.
Some days I also have very sore areas under my ribcage.
Today has been a bad day, again Ive felt I cant breathe properly and began to panic ending up in tears. I just want to know whats wrong and feel normal again. Its really getting me down. Im going to try and see my GP tomorrow. What should I expect to be done and does anyone else have the same symptoms?

sorry you are feeling so bad. have you had a look on the anxiety board? anxiety or stress may be part of it and can cause the symptoms you have mentioned. surprising what tight muscles can do. but it is always good to have a look at all avenues and have a chat with your gp

I hope this is helpful. hope you feel better soon

Julie :)
I have similar pain. It began months after dealing with a fall that resulted in a severe broken arm (requiring surgery) and spodylolisthesis (vertebrae out of alignment, mine in L-5) that gave me extreme sciatic pain for months. My spine issue slowly 'healed' to a point where it's now manageable. However, over the past 8 months I've have had pain that changes almost daily. Sometimes I feel it through my shoulders and neck, like an extreme stiff neck; sometimes it's in my arms and back; and sometimes my hands and feet feel pain. (The comical part is, I feel as if my shoes are too tight, and I'n not wearing shoes!) Usually when I feel this pain, I'm lying in bed. Sometimes it's bad enough that the pain wakes me a few times in the night. My arms and legs feel very stiff when I get out of bed in the morning. I believe that I have symptoms of 'fibromyalgia.' Apparently, from what I've read, fibromyalgia can develop as a result of trauma or fall. I find this pain tolerable compared to the sciatic pain I had dealt with for months. I do take ibuprofen occasionally and that seems to help me. Hope I've been helpful to you. Judy
Thanks for your replies. I went to see the GP yesterday who said it sounds muscular and is refering me for physio. I'm not completely happy because I want a scan on my back/chest to make sure there's nothing physically obvious that is causing the problems. I've made an appointment with my dentist too re the jaw thing. I think its all related.

Regarding the stress thing, about a year ago I was under alot of stress but I'm not now, no more than anyone else before Christmas! I think worrying about my back may make things worse but I feel like I'm in a catch 22 situation.

Thanks again.
Hi! I also have that tight feeling in the chest area, along with pain/burning in my right side under my ribcage. Sometimes I also get the burning sensation on the left side. I do have a herniated disc in the lumbar region, along with bad disc's in the neck. My neck pops and cracks when I turn it different ways. My neurologist tells me I probably have nerve damage. Perhaps you are having the same problem, and hopefully with more research you will come up with an answer. I get that "can't breathe" feeling, also, and I think it is from the irritation and burning in my chest. It is scary when you feel like that. I take deep breaths and that helps some. Hope your GP will run some tests on you. Take care and good luck.

Thanks Judy. It helps knowing I'm not alone with this. It is really taking over my life. Last night I woke up with the tight chest feeling again and felt I couldn't breathe. Pins and needles in my hands and feet. I thought i was going to pass out and got myself in such a state i ended up calling an ambulance convinced i was having a heart attack. They did an ECG which was fine. I went to my GP today who is finally getting me some x rays on my back.
Oh My, you must have been so darn scared waking up with that feeling, and it is a good thing you did all the ambulance to get yourself checked out. I also get the pins and needle feeling in my hands, and they fall asleep...I wake up and have to shake them around. But, I am like you, when I started having the funny chest feeling, I immediately went to my doc and had an EKG done, and it was just fine. So, now when I get that feeling, mostly waking up at night with it, I keep telling myself it isn't my heart and I try to relax, even though it is scary. I sometimes wonder if it has to do with reflux and heartburn as I get that at night, too. So many things to consider and wonder about!! I am glad you went to your doc and getting those X-Rays are a step in finding out what is happening with you. Keep me posted! I am going to post a thread on what happened when I went to the neurosurgeon yesterday. Take care and feel better!

I have been suffering with similar symptoms for several years. I have been in ICU for up to a month, because Dr's thought I was having a heart attack. Turns out it is Degenerative Disc desease in the thorasic spine at multiple joints.

Gives you pain in the neck, jaw, radiating down the arms, under rib cage, through the back etc...

Get an MRI of the Thorasic Spine done, it is extreemely rare to have problems in this area, but possible. I lifted weights and did a lot of back breaking work when I was younger. Can only lift less than 8 lbs now with out pain. My Pain Management treatment on going for a while not helping much, Radio frequency to deaden nerves did not do much.

I am now on Disability, was told to find a hobby to keep my mind active and do nothing to aggrevate the upper back.
Have not been on back board alot lately so just seen your thread. I have alot of the same, it is not only scary but boy does it hurt. Mine has gotten progressinly worse. My chest feels so heavy at times & is tender to touch, shoulder, neck upper back, ribs & is now going into the left side of the head. I have had tests done which show minor problems but not the actual cause, going for another MRI this evening. I was told at first it was anxiety over & over until it started to interfer with my ability to use my arm, I regret not following my instints back then when I knew something was really wrong. I have also been for cardiac workup because it does give of symptoms of cardiac problems, mine is all left sided. I will tell you I have found there can be more then one cause for these symptoms. The thoracic spine, shoulder, muscles ect... do not let it go, I am in chronic pain every single day now, I would imagine you will end up with MRIs . Follow your instinct & insist on getting to the bottem of this. Keep in mind with these things going on it can & I am sure has caused you anxiety, that does not mean anxiety is the problem. I am hopefully closer to finding out what is going on. It took me several doctors but finally I am getting some where thank god. I don't want to see anyone end up like me, all because I let the doctors put off looking into this, you would not believe some of the diagnosises I had without any testing what so ever. Good luck , hang in there, & keep us informed. Sammy
I have been suffering major chest and back pains as well. I cant do sit-ups without being hurt badly. I go through the burning in the mid to upper chest. Most of the time the feeling is right where the bridge of the chestbone is. But, I do feel the burning along the spine as well. I have had x-rays done and nothing showed up. I am seeing my doctor this Friday, what should I ask him to get done?
Hi ryandylan, Hope you had a good visit with your doctor and found out some ways to seek answers for your pain. If x-rays didn't show anything, I hope your doctor orderded an MRI of the problem area. Take care and let us know what is happening.

Even though I agree with others on stress related issues, I also would like to ask you if you ever been check for Chest Muscles neurolga?? I had this due to my arthrities while ago and it's a very painful and uncomfortable situation.
Takes a good DR to diagnose you with it.
Does excercises, picking up heavy stuff makes it works? I don't think it's your spine related problems since your muscles hurt you on touch, this more sounds to me like neurolga. It worth to see a good Neurologist.
Good luck to you!

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