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Back pain when breathing: causes and how to relieve it

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

It is misleading to think that it is normal to have back pain when breathing. Whenever this happens, a thorough examination by the specialist is necessary because it may be an indication of diseases or trauma that require immediate treatment or measures to alleviate this uncomfortable symptom.

To try to determine the cause, it is necessary to know the characteristics of the pain and the specific place on the back where it is reflected, as well as the other symptoms with which it can manifest itself. The probable causes of back pain when breathing revolve around poor posture, tiredness, trauma, respiratory illnesses, and heart disease.

If you want to know more about the causes of back pain when breathing and how to relieve it , we invite you to continue reading this FastlyHealarticle.

Causes of back pain when breathing

To know the cause of back pain when breathing, first, you must define the characteristics of the pain, the place on the back where it starts, where it radiates and if sudden symptoms such as fever and difficulty in moving appear.

In addition to the above, you should know that the lungs are located within the rib cage between the cervical and dorsal areas, so any condition that is related to the muscles in this area can increase pain just by breathing.

Back pain when breathing can be due to different origins:

Musculoskeletal origin

It includes, on the one hand, those caused by muscle injuries resulting from sudden movements, physical exercises, sedentary lifestyle or the incorrect mobilization of heavy objects that ends up triggering back pain and that, in fact, can intensify when breathing. These types of injuries can become chronic over time, ending in specific muscular pathologies, such as contractures .

In this same group of causes of back pain when breathing, fractures of the ribs caused by trauma should be included that cause pain that gradually increases and intensifies with deep breathing.

Also, costochondritis , which is inflammation of the junction of the ribs, should be included. This condition usually manifests as pain in the chest and back just when you breathe. Unfortunately, it is often mistaken for heart conditions.

Respiratory origin

The pain in this case is basically caused by respiratory diseases. This is not to say that the lungs have pain receptors, but rather the medical conditions that affect them cause this unpleasant symptom. Diseases such as:

  • The pneumonia that generates intense pain and trouble breathing
  • The lung cancer that is usually accompanied by what is called pleural pain
  • The tuberculosis and some viral infections that tend to trigger discomfort in the respiratory system.

Cardiac origin

Last but not least, are the causes of back pain when breathing related to conditions of the heart. This is because there are some heart conditions that trigger pleuritic pain, or pain in the pleura, the outer layer of the lungs.

This occurs specifically in the case of:

  • Acute myocardial infarction or heart attack.
  • Pericarditis, which is the inflammation of the membranes that line the heart.
  • Pulmonary hypertension, a really serious condition in which the pressure in the pulmonary artery is elevated.

Symptoms that can accompany back pain when breathing

There are a few other symptoms that can be associated with painful breathing and each of them will depend on the underlying cause:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Ronquera.
  • Chest pain.
  • Dry or mucus cough
  • Back pain and cough
  • Fever.
  • Shaking chills.
  • Pain that spreads down the back and / or to the shoulders.
  • For breathing problems, the pain can radiate from the spine to the chest.
  • Pleural pain is sharp and intense sharp and sudden. It can occur only with breathing and is worse during this process.

Back pain when breathing: diagnosis

You probably already have an idea of ​​what causes back pain when breathing. However, the symptoms will always require the evaluation of the specialist, who can indicate the following studies for the diagnosis:

  • Chest X-ray.
  • Computed axial tomography.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging that allows to obtain clear images about soft tissues.
  • Electrocardiogram that will allow the differential diagnosis of cardiac to respiratory and musculoskeletal problems.
  • Echocardiogram.
  • Blood test.

How to relieve back pain when breathing

The treatment depends directly on the cause of the back pain to breathing:

  • If the cause is the musculoskeletal origin, the specialist probably indicates physical rest, local bandaging, hot or cold compresses, and the administration of some analgesics or anti-inflammatories.
  • On the other hand, if back pain when breathing is related to problems of the respiratory system, treatment may include oral or intravenous antibiotics, depending on the severity, respiratory physiotherapy and oxygen.
  • If the pain becomes chronic, it may be necessary to resort to therapies that include narcotic analgesics, but only under the indication of the specialist. This will also determine if physical therapy and the use of other useful techniques will be necessary to improve this condition.

Fortunately, in many cases. Pain in the back when breathing is usually relieved with rest and relaxation, it will also be favorable to reduce weight in case of obesity, change the mattress, improve posture when sitting, walking and sleeping and practicing activities such as yoga.

It does not hurt that you know that if you have any of the aforementioned symptoms, you should go immediately to your specialist. In addition to this, you must take into consideration if the pain remains for more than 5 days, if this interferes with breathing, if it is also associated with dizziness, a feeling of fainting, you have a cough with blood, a fever or a temperature greater than 38.5 ° C appears and If you experience rapid heartbeat or tachycardia, logically your GP will know what to do in these cases and will tell you the best way to relieve your back pain when breathing and the treatment to follow.

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Back pain when breathing: causes and how to relieve it , we recommend that you enter our Lung and respiratory tract category .

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