Chest pain can cause back pain

Chest pain - this is how you can get rid of it sustainably!

Complete information on the causes, symptoms and treatment options for chest pain

Do you know these excruciating, sometimes stabbing, sometimes pulling pains in the thoracic spine that pull from the shoulder towards the center of the body? Do they become noticeable with certain movements or also as permanent pain and put a considerable strain on your everyday life? Do you feel insecure because you don't know where this pain is coming from? If your gynecologist or your family doctor has already ruled out a gynecological, cardiological or other organic problem, you can take a look at another cause of your complaints with our pain therapy treatments

We know from our daily work that overstrained and unyielding chest muscles cause pain in many patients. In our experience, this pain can be easily treated with osteopressure and special exercises in which we use our fascia roll massage set, among other things.

In this article, we'll tell you how you can treat chest pain effectively and quickly - without medication, surgery or side effects.

If you suffer from chest pain, we invite you to test the effectiveness of our Liebscher & Bracht treatment. The over-tension and intransigence of your chest muscles can be a cause of your discomfort. And the good news for you as a pain patient is: You can get your pain under control with osteopressure and our exercises for chest pain in the female or male breast. We would be happy to show you how it works.

In our online pain lexicon we give you an overview of chest pain and its causes and inform you about what you can do in the case of excessive tension in the chest muscles in the thoracic spine. The advantage here: A treatment according to Liebscher & Bracht works without any painkillers, the associated side effects and surgical interventions. Here you get the information how it works.

We'll show you what to look out for during treatment and when it makes sense to see a doctor. The pain specialists Dr. med. Petra Bracht and Roland Liebscher-Bracht have poured their many years of experience in the treatment of patients with chest pain into a concept that focuses on the cause of pain - the overstretched and overwhelmed muscles.

How can chest pain develop?

Chest pain does not only occur in women during pregnancy or while breastfeeding, but can also manifest itself at any time, for example through incorrect movements, unphysiological posture or too little exercise. Chest pain - men also suffer from this - then usually radiating from the shoulder towards the center of the body. It is important to first have the cause of chest pain clarified with a doctor, because chest pain can be symptoms of very different clinical pictures and have different causes. At the same time, they differ according to their intensity and can also appear in different places in the chest area. In women, chest pain manifests itself in one breast or both at the same time. Once the pain is there, it has a very negative effect on wellbeing and can sometimes lead to severe restrictions.

The causes of chest pain are numerous and varied. While it may well be a more serious illness, pain in the thoracic spine area may be comparatively harmless. The wrong bra or the wrong diet, for example, can lead to chest pain, but so can hormonal imbalances, heart problems and other serious illnesses.

If the cause of chest pain lies in incorrect posture as well as cramped and overstretched muscles and fascia, the symptoms can be remedied comparatively easily. Therapists according to Liebscher & Bracht rely on osteopressure in connection with specific exercises for stretching, which, with regular use, can relieve pain over the long term.

A little digression into anatomy - how is the human rib cage structured?

The human spine is divided into several sections. The thoracic spine consists of a total of twelve vertebral bodies. They are also referred to as thoracic vertebrae or Th 1 to Th 12. These are strongly shaped vertebral bodies that serve as the base of the individual ribs and thus form the rib cage. The connection between the rib and the transverse process of the thoracic vertebra is made via a small joint. In addition, the transverse process has a joint at its end that keeps the rib stable. Every time you breathe, the ribs move in the rib joints. At the lower end of the thoracic spine there is a type of thickening, similar to that on the cervical spine, from which the nerves run into the legs. The spinal canal in the thoracic spine is almost completely filled by the spinal cord.

Breathe, turn, bend over, straighten up and hold upright - the muscles in the back or in the area of ​​the chest muscles have many tasks and are challenged with almost every movement. How are the muscles in the back built? In anatomy, the muscles are differentiated based on their course. In the back there are the longitudinal back straightening muscles, the intermediate spinous process muscles and the intermediate transverse process muscles. The transverse process-spinous process muscles run transversely. However, the muscles can also be differentiated on the basis of their length into long muscles, such as the back erect muscles and the transverse process spinous process muscles. Short muscles are the inter-spinous process muscles, the inter-transverse process muscles and the transverse process-spinous process muscles. Its function is to stabilize and strengthen the spine. Their structure is layered: the long muscles lie on top of the short ones and form a protective muscle network around the spine. The longitudinal muscles are used for backward or sideways inclination, the oblique muscles for turning.

Anatomically, the superficial back muscles are divided into trunk-arm muscles, trunk-belt muscles and spinal column-rib muscles. The trapezoid or hood muscle, which connects the back and arm, is considered to be the most important back muscle. Its name reflects its position on the body because it covers the entire neck area like a hood. He moves his shoulder blades, turns his head, and lifts his collarbones. It also stabilizes the spine in the area of ​​the cervical and thoracic spine and supports the deep back muscles.

The broad back muscle, also known as the latissimus, is responsible for tilting the trunk sideways, pulling an arm towards you or moving it back onto the back. It runs from the spinous processes of the lower thoracic vertebrae, the lumbar vertebrae and the sacrum, the iliac crest and the lower ribs to the upper arm. When we cough, the lats compress the rib cage. Below the torso girdle lie the latissimus and trapezius muscles. These include the rhombus muscles, which move and stabilize the shoulder blades. The shoulder blade lifting muscles - as the name suggests - lift the two shoulder blades. The saw muscles, shaped like a saw, help breathe and raise and lower the ribs. That is why they are also called auxiliary breathing muscles.

📌 Conclusion

In the area of ​​the thoracic spine, the human body thus shows a complex interplay of vertebral bodies and the muscles surrounding them. Overstretched muscles and fasciae have a painful effect and influence a variety of body functions.

In our pain lexicon article on the thoracic spine syndrome, we illustrated the structure of the rib cage with its many muscles and bones.

The best exercises and tips for chest pain

Download our free PDF guide against chest pain now and start straight away with the best exercises for a pain-free life!

Enter your email address in the form to download the guide:

1. Development: How does chest pain develop?

Therapists trained according to Liebscher & Bracht understand chest pains, which have no organic cause, as alarm signals from the body that indicate an impending wear and tear of physical structures. This functional view of chest pain helps patients to understand pain differently and at the same time gives them the opportunity to influence their symptoms. Did you know that we only use a small fraction of our natural movement potential in the modern world of work and life? This has considerable effects on our overall well-being and the mobility of the muscles and fascia in our musculoskeletal system.

Restricted movement means one-sided loads that are noticeable in certain areas of the body through muscular-fascial over-tension. This can also be the thoracic spine area. This pain is also so uncomfortable for those affected because there is often a subliminal fear that it could be a more serious illness. If this is excluded, however, osteopressure according to Liebscher & Bracht, in which the alarm pain receptors in the periosteum are specifically stimulated, in conjunction with stretching exercises to reduce the muscular-fascial over-tension, pain in the chest area can be relieved. These exercises aim to leave the established and well-worn movement patterns and to stop the wear and tear by developing new movement patterns. It is important to have professional guidance, for example in special groups on bottleneck expansion.

🎥 In this video, pain specialist Roland Liebscher-Bracht explains how chest pain really occurs:

1.1. Chest pain in conventional therapy

In the case of chest pain, conventional medicine first looks at organic causes: After that, diseases can be the cause of chest pain. Organs that are not directly in the chest can also be responsible for chest pain. The pain can be caused by completely harmless or life-threatening diseases. Therefore, newly acquired, chronic and changing pain should always be clarified by a doctor first. This means that serious illnesses can be identified early and the right treatment can be initiated in good time. We present the causal clinical pictures for chest pain, at the same time differentiate them from chest pain that has its cause in the muscular-fascial area, and is therefore a case for Liebscher & Bracht.

1.2. Chest pain - life-threatening illnesses can be behind it

Angina and heart attack

One cause of chest pain can be narrowed coronary arteries. These vessels supply the heart muscle with blood. If the heart is no longer adequately supplied with oxygen due to these constrictions, angina pectoris attacks occur. The chest pain persists for seconds to minutes. Anxiety and tightness go hand in hand, which can lead to fear of death in many patients. The pain usually radiates to the left shoulder-arm-hand region, less often to the right or to the neck and lower jaw region, to the upper abdomen or back.

Sudden, severe pain behind the breastbone that lasts longer than 15-30 minutes suggests a heart attack. The pain then typically radiates to the arms, stomach, back (especially between the shoulder blades). In addition, there are often symptoms such as sweating, restlessness, nausea, vomiting, shortness of breath and fear of death.

Chest pain as a symptom of pulmonary embolism

Another possible cause of chest pain is pulmonary embolism. A thrombus (blood clot) causes the blood vessels in the lungs to close suddenly or gradually. Often times, the clot breaks free from a deep vein thrombosis and gets to the lungs via the blood.

Typical symptoms of pulmonary embolism are sudden onset of shortness of breath and cough, which can also be bloody, tachycardia (rapid heartbeat), collapse and even cardiovascular arrest. Breath-dependent chest pain, which is most pronounced when inhaling, is characteristic. The symptoms, however, depend on the vascular obstruction.

Pneumothorax and chest pain

Injuries from the outside (e.g. injuries from sharp objects) or from inside (e.g. due to a broken rib) can cause air to penetrate into the space between the lungs and the pulmonary membrane (= pneumothorax). Patients feel sudden sharp pain in the chest. Unbalanced or one-sided movements of the chest while breathing and increasing difficulty in breathing can occur. Depending on the extent, the lungs can collapse.

Aortic dissection

The aortic dissection is a tear in the innermost layer of the main artery (aorta) leading away from the heart. Chest pain that is perceived as devastating can occur and also radiate into the back and abdomen.

1.3. Chest pain in non-life threatening diseases

It is not always easy to distinguish mild illnesses from serious or life-threatening illnesses based on symptoms. It is therefore imperative that a doctor clarify the cause, because even clinical pictures that are not acutely life-threatening can have serious consequences if they persist for a long time.

Reflux disease

A common cause of chest pain is inflammation of the esophagus from the backflow (reflux) of stomach contents. In contrast to the gastric mucosa, that of the esophagus is not protected against gastric acid. This causes it to become infected and cause burning pain behind the breastbone (heartburn). The transition from the esophagus (sphincter muscle) to the stomach is not tightly closed. As a result, stomach contents can flow back into the esophagus while lying down or after eating. Alcohol can worsen the symptoms.

Hiatal hernia

A hiatal hernia is a displacement of the stomach, or parts of the stomach, into the chest cavity. It is accompanied by chest pain behind the sternum. The pain increases when you are lying down and less when you are standing.

Chest pain in orthopedic diseases

Common causes of chest pain can be muscular tension and intransigence, discomfort in the thoracic spine or ribs. There may be inflammation of the base of the ribs or wear and tear on the spine. Changes in the thoracic spine can put pressure on a nerve root. The pain radiates electrifyingly into the anterior chest. Rib fractures are associated with local pain and tenderness. Movement-dependent pain is typical of chest pain due to diseases of the musculoskeletal system.

Pleurisy and pneumonia

Chest pain in connection with pleurisy (pleurisy) usually occurs secondary, e. B. in the context of pneumonia, pulmonary tuberculosis or a lung tumor. Heart attacks or inflammation of the pancreas can also cause the inflammation. The pleura (pleura) rests on the inner chest wall. If there is inflammation, there is breath-dependent chest pain. The pain is often so severe that a relieving posture is assumed. If you suspect pleurisy, you should see your family doctor as soon as possible so that the underlying disease can be identified and treated quickly.

In addition to chest pain when breathing, the symptoms of typical pneumonia are often present: sudden chills, fever, cough (yellowish-green to reddish-brown sputum), rapid and shallow breathing.

Shingles (herpes zoster)

Shingles is caused by viruses that are also found in chickenpox. After an infection with chickenpox, it is possible that some pathogens can adhere to nerve roots unnoticed for years or decades. If the immune system is weakened due to another illness or high stress, the viruses are reactivated. The typical vesicles then appear in the supply area of ​​the affected nerve roots. Shingles can appear on any part of the body, with the most common being the chest. The consequences are burning or electrifying pain. Affected areas become sensitive to touch, which can persist even after the rash has healed.

Cardiac anxiety neurosis

The psychological trigger is often a heart attack or a similarly serious and drastic illness. Cases experienced in close family or friends can also trigger the reactions. In this case, too, the following applies: The chest pain must be taken seriously. If in doubt, a doctor should always be consulted.

Lung cancer

In the case of chest pain that gradually changes and intensifies, possibly accompanied by a deterioration in the general condition, weight loss and persistent, possibly bloody cough, the suspicion of bronchial carcinoma (lung cancer) should be clarified.

Abdominal diseases

Abdominal disorders can also cause chest pain. These include, for example, acute pancreatitis, gallbladder inflammation, biliary colic or gastric ulcer.

In the case of chest pain, it is very important to first have a doctor make a reliable diagnosis. If you have pain in this area and the cause is unclear, be sure to see a doctor and get a thorough examination. If your complaints are based on muscular-fascial problems and excessive tension in the thoracic spine, you can treat this pain without medication. The therapists trained according to Liebscher & Bracht will show you how this works.

The best exercises and tips for chest pain

Download our free PDF guide against chest pain now and start straight away with the best exercises for a pain-free life!

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2. Symptoms of chest pain

The good news first: If you have chest pain, you don't necessarily have to suffer from a serious illness. Serious illnesses are in the minority here. However, only a doctor can determine this. Chest pain usually occurs locally, for example in the left chest or behind the sternum. Some clinical pictures radiate into the chest, although the affected organ is not located directly in the chest cavity. The range of diseases that can cause chest pain is very wide. The pain can have different characters and thus provide a decisive indication of the disease. However, if chest pain that is new or has existed for a long time changes in character, a doctor should be consulted. Not all clinical pictures are life-threatening, but some are and others can be. Therefore, a clarification is necessary so that you can be treated early.

2.1. Characteristics of chest pain

Local chest pain

Tension pain and local pain when breathing and coughing occur, for example, with bruised ribs or a rib fracture. After an accident, you should have a broken rib ruled out, as it can lead to further complications if left untreated. Rib diseases such as inflammation, rib tuberculosis or tumors also show up as local pain and pressure pain. These diseases are often accompanied by swelling. The Tietze syndrome, a painful swelling at the cartilage / bone border, usually the upper ribs, is also noticeable with chest pain.

Pain behind the sternum (retrosternal)

If there is pain behind the breastbone, the heart or a nearby main vessel may be affected.

The aortic dissection, that is a tear in the innermost layer of the main artery (aorta) leading away from the heart, occurs with devastating pain behind the breastbone, which can radiate into the back and into the abdomen. Inflammation of the pericardium (pericarditis) or the heart muscle (myocarditis) is associated with breathing-dependent pain. Inhalation is often painful. A heavy feeling of pressure behind the breastbone with chest pain and radiating pain (usually longer than 15-30 minutes) indicate a heart attack. If you have this chest pain, you should call the emergency doctor immediately. In angina pectoris, the pain behind the breastbone also set in suddenly and with a feeling of annihilation. Similar to a heart attack, the pain radiates into the left shoulder-arm-hand region, rarely to the right or neck-mandible region and the back. This pain usually lasts for seconds to minutes and is different from a heart attack. Cardiac arrhythmias can also lead to painful tightness in the chest area.

Breath-dependent chest pain

In diseases of the lungs or of the pleura and lungs, the intensity of pain in the chest is often dependent on the breath, i. that is, it increases with inhalation or exhalation. Causes such as bronchitis, pneumonia or lung cancer usually also show up with shortness of breath, coughing or even coughing up blood. A pulmonary embolism occurs due to a thrombus, which z. B. may have detached from a deep vein thrombosis and entered the lungs with the bloodstream. Symptoms may be sudden chest pain, possibly with a bloody cough, shortness of breath, racing heart (tachycardia), painful breathing. If you suspect a pulmonary embolism, you should contact the emergency doctor immediately.

In the case of a pneumothorax, for example, an injury to the chest (e.g. rib fracture, stab injury) causes air to enter the space between the lungs and the pulmonary membrane. This can lead to a collapse of the lungs. Sharp pain in the chest, asymmetrical or one-sided movements of the chest when breathing and shortness of breath are other symptoms.

Chest pain associated with difficulty swallowing

Chest pain can also be caused by diseases of the esophagus. Pain behind the breastbone with a feeling of pressure and difficulty swallowing can be caused by inflammation of the esophagus (esophagitis). Reflux esophagitis, an inflammation of the esophagus caused by the reflux of food from the stomach into the esophagus, causes a burning pain behind the breastbone (heartburn). Chest pain and pressure may also be due to an esophageal diverticulum; H. Protrusions of the esophageal wall, indicate. In this case, food may have to be regurgitated. Disturbances in the mobility of the esophagus can lead to pain and difficulty swallowing as well as to belching or the backflow of food. Spasmodic chest pain with increasing difficulty swallowing can be found in achalasia, damage to the nerves in the lower esophagus. A rupture of the esophagus, the cause of which can include, for example, violent vomiting, also leads to chest pain, as is the case with esophageal carcinoma. Indications of this can also be given by food getting stuck in the same place and a feeling of pressure.

Radiating pain

Illnesses whose origin cannot be found directly in the chest cavity can cause chest pain when they radiate. For example with the so-called Roemheld complex. An overflowing and inflated stomach leads to reflex chest pain on the left side. A displacement of the stomach, or parts of the stomach (hiatal hernia), into the chest cavity is accompanied by chest pain behind the sternum. The pain increases when you are lying down and less when you are standing. Biliary colic or acute pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas) can also project pain into the chest. If pain occurs depending on movement, the cause could be in the musculoskeletal system. Thoracic spine disorders radiate pain into the chest cavity. These can occur on both sides of the spinal column or directly behind the breastbone.

Chest tightness felt with pain

Psychological causes, such as depression or heart anxiety neuroses, can also trigger chest pain.

Pulling chest pain and tenderness

Diseases of the mammary gland can also be a cause of local pain in the female breast. Hormone changes during cycles can cause pulling pain and tenderness in the chest. Inflammations, abscesses or tumors of the mammary gland (benign or malignant) can also cause chest pain.

The best exercises and tips for chest pain

Download our free PDF guide against chest pain now and start straight away with the best exercises for a pain-free life!

Enter your email address in the form to download the guide:

3. Causes of Chest Pain

The pain specialists Dr. med. Petra Bracht and Roland Liebscher-Bracht know from their many years of experience in the treatment of patients with chest pain that this pain - if no other cause has been diagnosed - can in many cases be assigned to the area of ​​functional pain. The pain as a function? That's right, in Liebscher & Bracht's understanding, pain is an alarm signal from the brain that is intended to draw attention to impending damage to physical structures. With this warning, the brain signals: Stop structural wear! In this case, the causes are muscular-fascial over-tension, which leads to pain in the area of ​​your thoracic spine.

The explanation for this is simple: In our everyday life we ​​only use a small fraction of the exercise potential made available to us by nature. Sedentary activities, always the same joint angle and movement patterns, which are only geared towards minimalist activity, lead to the build-up of tension in muscles and fasciae. The main reason for this painful occurrence is the lack of stretching of muscles and fasciae, which can only be kept supple through movement. Over time, these structures become more and more intransigent. If the cause of pain is definitely located in this area, there is a sustainable, simple and effective treatment option that does not require any medication: osteopressure according to Liebscher & Bracht in connection with regular exercises, through which patients develop their natural potential for movement step by step recapture and return to a pain-free life. The key here is: get active and choose a therapist trained by Liebscher & Bracht!

3.1. What other possible causes of chest pain can be considered?

When it comes to chest pain, many people think of some heart trouble. However, in most cases, it is not the heart that causes chest pain. Diseases of the skeletal and muscular system can also be possible causes, for example. Inflammation of the pleurisy (pleurisy) can also manifest itself as chest pain, as can gastroesophageal reflux disease. Doctors roughly divide chest pain into heart-based (cardiac) and non-heart-based (non-cardiac) causes, depending on the trigger.

Heart disease as a cause of chest pain

As is well known, diseases of the heart can lead to chest pain. If the pain comes from the heart, doctors call this the cardinal cause. Most of the time, the pain occurs mainly on the left or behind the breastbone.

The angina attack, which can be caused by coronary artery disease (CHD), is one of the common causes of chest pain emanating from the heart. Chest pain can also be a common symptom of a heart attack.

The following diseases can also be considered as further cardinal, i.e. cardinal, causes:

  • An acquired or congenital heart valve defect;
  • certain heart muscle disorders;
  • Cardiac arrhythmias;
  • Inflammation of the heart muscle (myocarditis);
  • Inflammation of the heart sac (pericarditis).

A cardiovascular disease does not necessarily have to be behind the chest pain, there is a whole range of possible causes that can be the basis. Chest pain can also come from the nerves, the main artery, or the lungs. The esophagus can also be considered as a possible cause, as well as diseases of the musculoskeletal system or muscular-fascial overvoltage. Even psychological causes are quite possible.