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Upper Back Pain Accompanied By Shortness of Breath

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For the past 2 weeks, my wife has been suffering with persistent back pain accompanied by shortness of breath. She's 25 years old and in otherwise good health, not overweight, not a smoker, eats as healthy as possible, etc.

She finally went to the doctor and he prescribed a sterooid to open her airways. He said if the pain continues to go to the hospital. That night the pain was so bad we decided to go to the hospital.

They took X-Rays and found nothing. The doc gave her motrin for the pain and siad its probably related to th fact that she was sick a month earlier and never fully healed. The shortness of breath was causing the cartlige between the ribs to enflame, causing the pain.

Fine... but the pain continued. She went back to her doctor who decided to treat her as if she has asthma. Inhaler, steroids, the works... the pain continues.

Yesterday she went to another doctor for a second opinion. He couldnt explain the pain and also thinks she's becoming (or is) asthmatic.

I dont buy it... her mom is asthmatic and NEVER had pain in her back. She can barely move, has a hard time with our kids, it's really affecting everything she does.

Does anyone out there have any idea what's going on?

Thanks in advance,
Ivan
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First Helper IvanTheTerrible
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replied November 14th, 2007
Chiropractor Or Physical Therapist Might Just Be the Answer
Hi Ivan,

Personally I don’t think that you sound so terrible, as your user name might imply, and welcome to the forum.

I am no doctor but if I have to venture a guess, and this truly is a guess. I am guessing that while your wife was sick she spent a considerable amount of time lying on her side while watching TV on either your couch or bed? Do either of those surfaces sag or give way under pressure and weight? Does she tend to lay on one side more then the other?

It doesn’t take nearly as long as some people might think for the body to start degenerating, even perfectly healthy bodies, when not kept in motion, degenerate at an alarming rate. As a result it’s not uncommon to develop secondary physical ailments following illness and recovery for whatever reason. People who convalesce on “sagging” surfaces often develop symptom affecting their backs. Because of your wife’s symptoms and lack of a conclusive diagnosis, I wonder if she has developed a sublaxation in her thoracic spine, T-3, T-4, T-5 region that no one is seeing or cares about if they do?

What I do know for sure is that my husband periodically complains of the same symptoms that you have described. He has sought the services of a chiropractor and achieved immediate relief from simple spinal manipulation. I would also recommend a course of physical therapy, they too are capable of spinal realignment and will be able to provide an exercise program designed to ensure optimal core strength to prevent occurrences such as this in the future. If your bed is an issue, it might be time to consider replacing it. If your couch or chairs are an issue, you might consider buying your wife a new living room set for Christmas.

Good Luck and Best Wishes,
Tyton
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User Profile
replied November 26th, 2007
Supporter
What about arthritis as a possibility? RA, more specifically, or another auto-immune disease?
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replied May 2nd, 2010
Ivan,
did your wife figure out what was ailing her? I''m experiencing the exact same symptoms and am only 25 as well, in otherwise good health, and am starting to be controlled by this cronic pain.
Thank you
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replied May 3rd, 2010
Extremely eHealthy
DAS
did you have any accident when this trouble started. how long has pain been experienced. does it hurt when you breath. does it hurt when you bend or twist. do ribs hurt when you are laying on your bed?.....pete
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replied May 3rd, 2010
Experienced User
little known fact that may not have been mentioned that you could have checked out by your doctor.

There is the FACT that there was an illness. I imagine there was coughing, sneezing and maybe throwing up.
Once a very long time ago, I had a terrible cold. In my sleep I had torn the cartlidge inbetween my ribs and it caused extream pain in my mid back. It takes longer to heal than a broken rib the doctor told me. He had done the very sanme thing to himself.
Also, a MRI will show if there is a problem with the discs. Any doctor can order that. Depending on the results you may or may not be told to see a spine specialist. Either a neuro or orthopedic surgeon. A pain management doctor, etc.
I would advise you to get this MRI before seeing a chiropractor only because an xray shows so much less than a MRI.
(don't forget to ice it down:-) corn or pears or beans work great frozen as an ice pack and are cheap. 20 on 20 mins off ...repeat.
Good luck,
Temperwolf
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replied May 15th, 2010
Does your wife have breast implants? I'm suffering from the same symptoms and doctors can't figure out what i have. I've had MRI's, Pulmonary exams, I've seen a neurologist, Chiropractic, massage therapist and still can't figure out what i have. I've search other sites and have found two that imply this symptoms are related to breast implant rejection.
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replied October 7th, 2010
Shortness of Breath & upper back pain
Join the Club. I went into the hospital last November, diagnosed with blood pressure of 231/131 with a heart rate of only 38. I came out of the hospital with shortness of breath and upper back pain (only when physical or just moving around). Sitting, I'm fine. Three surgeries later, I still have the symptoms only getting worse. Been to cardiologist, pulmonologist, tests, repair of haital hernia. Still no improvement. I am not giving up.
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replied October 24th, 2010
Shortness of breath, back pain
Hi Ivan,

I would be very interested to find out whether your wife ever found out what was wrong with her. I'm 25, in good health, non-smoker and eat and exercise well. For 13 weeks I have had shortness of breath, like a heaviness on my chest. Often I have upper back pain. Nothing appears on an X-ray or ECG or in blood tests. I have no improvement with antibiotics, steroids (for asthma), proton pump inhibitor (for heartburn) or ibuprofen (for inflammation). My doctor says it's anxiety but I don't feel anxious. If you could let me know I would be very grateful.
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replied January 24th, 2012
This post is exactly what I have gone through. Did you ever figure anything out?
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replied December 17th, 2010
Thank you TYTON!!!!
Hi Tyton,

I am 22 years old, 5'8 206 lbs (12%) body fat and I believe you are correct in relation to your comment about a pain in the back shortness of breath being caused by leaning to one side for a period of time. I very often lay on my side while on my bed when using my laptop and as soon as i stopped laying on my side, the pain and shortness of breath had gone away. thank you so much for your sage advice. I was really worried. I always assume the worst with body injuries.
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replied February 17th, 2011
Poss. PE?
I am 25 years old. I used to smoke for 10 years. I am on birth control and have a family history of blood clots. (My platelet count likes to jump to 600 - 700 which doesn't help). I've had shortness of breath and pain in the mid thoracic region of my back (location of lungs) for the past 6 months. Slowly it has been getting worse. I get dizzy and light head sometimes. Asthma has been ruled out because I took a breathing test and almost scored perfectly. O2 level is 99. So it is not my bronchial tubes. (they are "in" the lungs and "hold" the O2) I sometimes wake up in the middle of the night gasping for air. I was now sent to get a chest xray and to get tested for blood clots. My doctor thinks I might have PE. Pulmonary embolism is a clot in the arteries of the lungs. They are extremely painful and cause shortness of breath and coughing. If you're wife takes birth control it is possible she may have developed clots. You mentioned children. During pregnancy it is also possible to develop clots. I hope this information helps. Good luck. I understand your frustration. Sad
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replied January 25th, 2012
question
Hello, I'm 23yrs old; weight 110 lb and I feel weak most of the time. Cant even run 1 block or walk too much because my heart starts beating too fast, hurts and I can even hear how strong my heart beats are and can feel the pain of each beat. It also doesnt allow me to breathe normal for few minutes. Before, I used to get back pain (they were sharpie pain every time I breathe deeply). Now I dont feel that sharpie pain anymore, but I do get tired easily. I dont have appetite, sometimes I feel sharp pain in my stomach and my skin is very sensitive. If I scratch myself or hit myself slowly I get bruises in like few minutes and get lot of headaches. Doctors tell me is just school work and stressbut I dont think it is??
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replied January 26th, 2012
Active User, very eHealthy
Sounds like stress.

Try doing the "Static Back Position" and inhale through your nose.

.........relax..........

Let your stomach rise and fall as you inhale and exhale. This mans your diaphragm muscle is working correctly to let air into your lungs.

If your chest rises and falls instead, you aren't breathing correctly.

For a good hip stretch do the same breathing but while doing the "Progressive Groin Stretch" (Do a Google search).
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replied May 14th, 2013
I had the same symptoms 9 months ago. Turned out a had a few very large clots in my lungs. Go back to hospital immediately and insist on a D-Dimer blood test if that comes back abnormal then chances are she has clots.
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replied December 23rd, 2013
Shortness of Breath,upper back pain,chest pains,shoulder pain
Hi beginning of 2013 I started feeling so much pains from my upper left back,chest pains,headaches,chest fullness,pulse tinittus
actually the whole of my upper part was ridiculously painful.My moods swings were uncontrollable,couldn't even play with my 3 yr. old daughter.Relationship with my hubby was going down the drain.So April we decided to go to the Chiropractor,she took X-Ray and she found out about my upper back pain before I even tell her,and she told me that usually when you have upper left back pain theres a big chance of heart disease or cancer.So immediately she started adjusting me.Which really helped with my moods and little bit with pains ,but around August we decided to go to the doctor for another check up cause now I was suffering from shortness of breath,I felt like I was not getting enough oxygen especially in my left side.The doctor sent me to the laboratory for blood work ,hospital for X-Ray and heart scan and ultrasound.All the results came back negative except for LDL Cholesterol,which was 560mg,which made sense, cause when I googled about LDL cholesterol symptoms was exactly the same as what I was going thru.My heart scan will be next year January,so instead of waiting for the heart scan I decided to start home remedies for lowering cholesterol.Mind that before I got sick I was already on a mission of loosing weight ,I already lost 30pounds,but because of stress and depression the level of cholesterol went high.I made a hot tea form extra red hot chillies,ginger,garlic and turmeric 3 times a day,sometimes i blend raw beets,spinach ,ginger,garlic,turmeric and hot pepper add water make juice.3 times a day.My diet is very lean,I exercise 30 minutes a day,plus i take 2-3 Omega 3 with Coenzymes everyday,I drink Whey Isolate protein as well.As I'm writing right now I have no more pains,short breath is history ,Ive lost 55 pounds.I've never been so healthy in my life . I'm still deciding whether I go for heart scan or not because everything is back to normal.
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replied December 23rd, 2013
Shortness of Breath,upper back pain,chest pains,shoulder pain
Hi beginning of 2013 I started feeling so much pains from my upper left back,chest pains,headaches,chest fullness,pulse tinittus
actually the whole of my upper part was ridiculously painful.My moods swings were uncontrollable,couldn't even play with my 3 yr. old daughter.Relationship with my hubby was going down the drain.So April we decided to go to the Chiropractor,she took X-Ray and she found out about my upper back pain before I even tell her,and she told me that usually when you have upper left back pain theres a big chance of heart disease or cancer.So immediately she started adjusting me.Which really helped with my moods and little bit with pains ,but around August we decided to go to the doctor for another check up cause now I was suffering from shortness of breath,I felt like I was not getting enough oxygen especially in my left side.The doctor sent me to the laboratory for blood work ,hospital for X-Ray and heart scan and ultrasound.All the results came back negative except for LDL Cholesterol,which was 560mg,which made sense, cause when I googled about LDL cholesterol symptoms was exactly the same as what I was going thru.My heart scan will be next year January,so instead of waiting for the heart scan I decided to start home remedies for lowering cholesterol.Mind that before I got sick I was already on a mission of loosing weight ,I already lost 30pounds,but because of stress and depression the level of cholesterol went high.I made a hot tea form extra red hot chillies,ginger,garlic and turmeric 3 times a day,sometimes i blend raw beets,spinach ,ginger,garlic,turmeric and hot pepper add water make juice.3 times a day.My diet is very lean,I exercise 30 minutes a day,plus i take 2-3 Omega 3 with Coenzymes everyday,I drink Whey Isolate protein as well.As I'm writing right now I have no more pains,short breath is history ,Ive lost 55 pounds.I've never been so healthy in my life . I'm still deciding whether I go for heart scan or not because everything is back to normal.
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replied April 7th, 2014
Whoever told you to go see a chiropractor is correct. I experience this periodically and the only thing that will fix it it a chiropractor. Does she experience pain in her back whenever she breaths in? If so it is because her ribs are pinching a muscle and that is what is causing the pain. She probably did a slight sudden movement and threw out he alignment in her back.
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