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DrRussMD, Board Certified Physician
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 64996
Experience:  Internal Medicine--practice all of internal medicine, all ages, family, health, prevention, complementary medicine, etc.
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I have a pain in my upper back near my spine and sometimes

Customer Question

I have a pain in my upper back near my spine and sometimes in my arm as well when i take a deep breath or make certain movements. Is this a cardiovascular issue or could it be something else?
JA: The Doctor will need to help you with this. Please give me a bit more information, so the Doctor can help you best.
Customer: It hurts when I breath in while I am slouching or sometimes when I tense up that area
JA: Is there anything else the Doctor should be aware of?
Customer: It doesn't really hurt with running or physical activity
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Doctor about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. SH replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your question.

Pain that increases when you take a deep breath or make a certain movement is almost certainly either a muscular pain or pain that is related to inflammation of the covering of the lungs (pleuritis).

This is HIGHLY UNLIKELY to be related to a heart issue.

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Expert:  DrRussMD replied 1 year ago.


I have a different answer for you.

First, we know nothing about you. Your age makes a difference. So does your medical history, as does your gender. Such information would be helpful. In addition, how long has this been going on, what other symptoms do you have, any exam or tests, etc.

In order of likelihood, the possibilities are as follows:

Disc problems in the spine.

Muscle/ligament/tendon tears.

Gallbladder problems [pain under the right shoulder blade]

Pancreatic pain, stomach pain [occasionally under the left shoulder blade].


Pulmonary embolus, or pneumonia, or a collapsed lung [not likely]./


A problem with the great vessels in the chest [not likely].

A heart problem. I will now comment more on this:

Depending on different factors, and exam findings, any of these are possible.

If you are diabetic, for example, heart problems are much MORE likely, even with atypical symptoms. In fact, up to 75% of diabetics can have no symptoms or unusual symptoms for angina.

History and Physical is needed for diagnosis.

Don't take chances, see your doctor.

Not knowing you or examining you, it is impossible to say what the probabilities are here.

I am Dr. Thomas, double board certified US doctor.

Find me anytime. I am here daily. Save time and request me.

Please click a positive on the rating scale here.


Come back if you have more questions, OR, if you have more information and want to clarify anything.

Good luck.