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What Is Upper Back Pain

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Upper Back Pain Causes and Treatments Lakewood

Upper back pain is pain that is felt between the bottom of the neck and top of the lumbar spine. The upper back and neck section is a very complex part of our body because there are many joints and muscles working together.

While lower back pain affects our ability to walk and move about, upper back pain affects our ability to carry out simple daily activities like combing our hair or riding a bicycle.

Upper back pain is not as common as lower back pain, which is the most frequent excuse for absenteeism from work. This is because the upper back does not move as much as the spine in the lower back.

To understand how the upper back behaves, you need to have an idea of how it is structured in the spine.

Upper Back Structure

The anatomy of the upper body consists of the torso, arms and back. The torso which is basically the thoracic spine is made up of twelve vertebrae. The upper nine vertebrae are connected to corresponding ribs on both sides at every level and attaches to the breastbone in front. This forms the thoracic cage that provides structural protection for the internal organs of the heart, lungs and liver. This also offers space for the lungs to expand and contract but has limited motion in the spine. The lower three ribs do not join together at the front but still offer some protection to the vital organs, and allow slightly more motion in the spine. Viewing from the side, this part of the spine is a bit concave.

Since there is a lot of stability and little motion at the upper back (thoracic spine), there is less spinal disorder along this section of the spine.

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