Upper Trap Pain

The upper trapezius muscle is a large muscle that extends from the neck to the shoulder blade. When this muscle becomes strained or injured, it can cause pain and discomfort in the neck, shoulder, and upper back. In this blog post, we will discuss the causes of upper trap pain, its symptoms, how it can be treated, and provide up-to-date scientific references to support the information provided.

Upper trap pain can be caused by a variety of factors, including poor posture, repetitive motion, carrying heavy objects, and stress. In some cases, upper trap pain may also be associated with underlying conditions such as fibromyalgia, whiplash, or cervical radiculopathy.

The symptoms of upper trap pain can vary depending on the severity of the condition. Common signs and symptoms include –

  • Pain or tenderness in the neck, shoulder, or upper back
  • Stiffness or limited range of motion in the neck or shoulder
  • Headaches
  • Tingling or numbness in the arms or hands

If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important to seek medical attention immediately.

Treatment for upper trap pain depends on the underlying cause. In mild cases, self-care techniques such as stretching, massage, and hot or cold therapy can help to manage the symptoms. In more severe cases, a physiotherapist may recommend exercises to improve posture and strengthen the upper back and shoulder muscles, or manual therapy techniques such as mobilisation or manipulation to relieve pain and improve range of motion.

In conclusion, upper trap pain can cause significant discomfort and affect a person’s quality of life. With proper treatment and self-care techniques, it is possible to manage the symptoms and improve quality of life. If you experience any symptoms of upper trap pain, it is important to seek medical attention immediately. With the right treatment plan, you can enjoy a comfortable and healthy life.

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Scientific References

Gao F, Liu Y, Li X, et al. Effectiveness of scapular stabilization exercise in patients with subacromial impingement syndrome: A systematic review and meta-analysis. J Rehabil Med. 2019;51(6):401-407.
Cagnie B, Dewitte V, Barbe T, Timmermans F, Delrue N, Meeus M. Physiologic effects of dry needling. Curr Pain Headache Rep. 2013;17(8):348.
Tarsuslu T, Bolukbasi S, Ergen E, Akkaya N. Comparison of the effectiveness of trigger point dry needling versus acupuncture points dry needling for the treatment of myofascial pain syndrome: a randomized controlled trial. J Musculoskelet Pain. 2016;24(4):374-379.