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Stabbing upper back pain between spine and shoulder blade

hey everyone, I am starting a discussion because I need some guidence. I am a 26 year old healthy female but have been experiencing pain for over a year in my upper back in between right shoulder blade and spine. The pain is always lingering but every once in a while it will "strike up" with a stab so sharp that I usually scream or gasp very loud. This will happen 6-10 times daily. I first saw a chiropractor which made it worse. Then tried acupuncture, did nothing, followed by back specialist who got MRI of
my spine... he found nothing abnormal except for some slight tears in my t7 , t8, and t9 which he said should not be causing pain and to go see a shoulder specialist. Shoulder specialist gave me a cortisone shot in my shoulder joint ? This did nothing. I take naproxen 500 2-3 times daily but still that doesn't help. My whole life has been effected by this, I cant run, the pain effects my sleeps, my relationships and overall well being. 

Now what???
do I see a neurologist? A pain specialist? Bone scan?? Ultra sound ?? I really appreciate any guidence here... also was contemplating Botox injections into that area , anyone have experience with doing that? 

Thank you for listening, 


  • dilauroddilauro ConnecticutPosts: 12,609
    take one step at a time.... dont rush into any injections, especially botox. the fact that you had a steriod injection into your shoulder and it did not help at all, the next area i would be looking into is your cervical area.

    many times its difficult to distinguish between shoulder problems and cervical problems. i've had both and when i had the steroid injection (5 of them over 4 years) they help and gave me pain relief. but prior to that i also had two acdfs to take care of my cervical issues. final results was that osteoarthritis had deteriorated my shoulder joints to bone on bone, i had to have both shoulders totally replaced with implants

    this is worth reading chronic pain step by step treatment
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,241
    hello lgoodsteinr!
    welcome to spine-health
    please click on link for helpful information!
    Honorary Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

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  • Herniations to T3-T7 here, my primary complaint was spinal pain of upper back/ neck that radiates to left scapula 
  • Lindsay,

    I have 3 herniated discs and 1 bulging in my neck.  After about a year with that, my pain became focused in my back.  It spreads from the base of my neck across my upper back and done along my spine, between the shoulders where it is the worst.  I've been told by neurosurgeons it is referred pain from my cervical injuries.  Humidity and/or rain make it worse.  I would suggest a cervical MRI to confirm or remove that as a source of your pain.

  • Hi. I see you posted this about a month ago so not sure if you've found out anything further. I found this thread just by searching my current symptoms. I am 29 years old and had scoliosis correction surger with Harrington rods when I was 12. No problems up until 3 years ago started having left neck pain down left arm. Went to an orthopedic spine specialist and had an MRI. Come to find out the pain has nothing to do with my scoliosis. Instead, now I have a degenerative disc in my neck, which is causing the pain. This week I have been struggling  with sharp, stabbing pain on left side between my spine and left shoulder blade. The skin is even sensitive. So sore to where the shower water hitting it hurts when showering! If I make a sudden move or just lay a certain way the sharp pain will radiate in my neck, and down arm, sometimes even to chest. To sum it up, I recommend seeing an orthopedic, spine specialist and have an MRI on your neck even though the pain is in your back. I've had allot of experience with back pain and arm pain. I hope you find someone who can help you out before it gets worse. Keep us posted :) sorry for the long story! Lol
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  • Hi I am a 21 yr old healthy male that has been experiencing the same pain in both my right and left sides of my spine for over a year but was able to fix the right side by cauterizing nerves a couple weeks ago yet the left side feels worse than before the procedure. I’m wondering if you’ve gotten any better/any specific diagnosis. I will probably get an MRI of my neck before my next appt after reading these comments, but any advice will help. It’s deteriorating my life & well being as well!!

  • LizLiz Posts: 9,699

    The member that created this discussion is no longer on the forum so I am closing it


    Veritas-Health Forum Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
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