How to have other pain taken seriously

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New Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 2/13/2010 12:33 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello CPers! Thanks for the warm welcome in my greetings thread.

Growing up I've always had pain in my upper back, between my shoulder blades. I a
lways attributed it to being top heavy and nothing legitimate. In 2006 it began to get so bad that I couldn't sleep or would have a hard time staying asleep, going to football games was equal to torture (and not just because my teams lost), and my overall quality of life was really effected. Right around the time that I began to research my options my lower back gave out and it was like a sucker punch to the gut. All of the doctors were concerned about my lower back and the pain from that was so great that my upper back got put on the back burner.

Thankfully the lower back is fused and I'm adjusting to my new reality without too many glitches and breakdowns. My challenge now is that my upper back has once again gotten so bad that at times it hurts to breathe. The range of motion in my shoulders gets limited if I don't get neuromuscular massages routinely. For some reason when I bring up my upper back to my spine surgeon or my PM they are very disnissive, it's as if the fact that I don't have fractured bones makes it a nonfactor. I do have scoliosis.

I would love to hear suggestions about how to approach the doctors so they take my upper back more seriously. Right now it's hurting so bad that I'm taking my pain meds more for that than my lumbar pain.

30 years old, severe SI joint pain resulting from L5/S1 Fusion, Scoliosis, Bipolar Disorder, Idiopathic Hypersomnia and resulting Insomnia

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 1097
   Posted 2/13/2010 2:25 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Jill,

Perhaps the next time you see your PM, you can ask him why he doesn't seem to think the pain in upper back is worth his attention. Maybe he thinks it's "just" muscular, and therefore, not a big enough problem to deal with. You can also ask the same of your spinal surgeon, and then maybe ask if they could recommend someone else you could see, to get this situation resolved as well.

You need to take charge here and not let them shrug this off. If the pain is bothering you, then speak up and keep speaking until someone listens.

Good luck and I'm sending healing thoughts your way.

Conditions: Fibromyalgia, Chronic Pelvic Pain, FAI, Reynauds, IBS, Surgical Adhesions, Ophthalmic Migraines
(plus physically unable to vomit due to Nissen, and I have extremely tiny veins...a joy for blood work or IV's)
Surgeries: Appendix, Uterus, Nissen Fundoplication for GERD, Left Ovary, Gallbladder, Right Ovary, TVT
Medications: Oxycontin, Tramacet, Cymbalta, Nortriptyline
Other: Vitamin D, Multi-Vitamin

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 16799
   Posted 2/13/2010 2:40 PM (GMT -6)   
Jill, just a thought, if you have had MRI's and such & check\ed out ok in those areas, then another thought since you stated you are top heavy, depending on how top heavy you are, is breast reduction. I have 3 friends that suffered horribly with everything from neck, shoulder & back pain all three has it done and wished they would have done it sooner. Just an idea to throw out.

crohns disease dx 2002 & small bowel resection, still looking for remission whatever that is, chronic pain 22 yrs, added ulcerative colitis 6-05 to the mix, high blood pressure 28 yrs, aortic heart valve insuffiency, depression, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis lumbar spine, scoliosis lumbar spine, peripheral neuropathy hands & feet, COPD & on oxygen therapy, lupus & psoriasis and psoratic arthritis. Several other health issues just not enough room to list it all. Too many surgeries to list and too many medications to list. Currently on 17 different daily medications. Intrathecal pain pump implanted June 05.

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2010
Total Posts : 358
   Posted 2/13/2010 7:31 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi V.V.,
I'm Cat and new on HW. I've thought about this all afternoon and well... I had terrible problems in that area of my back during my pregnancies to which no one addressed. As I got past the child bearing desire in my life, I kept having problems off and on. Then all heck broke loose, and so many things happened that it all meshed together. My pm dr had me go see an "in house" chiropractor who first of all, refused to do any kind of "adjustments" due to my main back problem. When my shoulder became really bad (frozen shoulder), the chiropractic Dr. was the one who listened, was a wonderful, and knowledgeable man. I really appreciate him and wish he was an MD! At any rate, he said the pain in my back between my shoulderblades came from the muscles pulling in to protect the shoulder and the syrinx which is my main diagnosis. I had no clue I had syringomyelia until I ruptered 4 discs and they did an MRI. So, there are many reasons your back would be hurting there. I feel for you...literally!! I agree with the other responses, make someone hear you! I know for me, if I go in with several ailments, I'm ignored. If I go in with one ailment, the dr tends to listen closer. Good luck.
DXed-Syringomyelia C-1 to T-1, Hypothyroidism, Diabetes Type II, Adhesive Capsulitis "aka" Frozen Shoulder, IBS, Panic Disorder, ICC (Interstitial Cystitis), Fibromyalgia, Migraines, Bipolar Disorder
Too many meds to name/Too many allergic reactions/sensitivities to too many drugs to name. Meds for Panic Disorder, Pain, Bipolar, IBS, Hypothroidism, Diabetes, Insomnia and then some.

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