Anyone that has suffered from burning upper back pain understands just how annoying, uncomfortable, and sore this can be. Although upper back pain is not as common as pain in the lower back, upper back pain is on the rise. Common causes of burning upper back pain are strain and injury to the ligaments or muscles attached to the vertebrae, stress, joint dysfunction, long-term poor posture, overuse, or even a sudden twisting motion. People often injure their upper back by carrying heavy objects, throwing, bending, or twisting quickly. Even vigorous coughing or sneezing can result in burning upper back pain. Your upper and lower back work collectively so injuring your lower back can lead to upper back problems such as burning upper back pain. Work on eliminating lower back problems to help alleviate upper back pain.

Symptoms of upper back problems include persistent stiffness; aching in the upper back especially after standing or sitting for long periods; sharp pain in the upper back or neck after such things as strenuous activity or moving and lifting heavy objects; and burning upper back pain. You may also experience pain or muscle spasms taking a deep breath or discomfort and pain bending your neck or moving your shoulders.

Strained ligaments and joints caused by a shoulder or neck injury can result in aching, sharp or burning upper back pain. ‘Referred pain’ is a very common cause of burning upper back pain. Referred pain is a pain felt in the upper back, neck, shoulders, or other parts of the body that is a distance from the actual source of pain. Examples of referred pain that cause burning upper back pain are heart disease or an inflamed gallbladder that causes referred pain in the upper back or right shoulder area.

The rotator cuff or rotor cuff is a group of tendons and muscles that stabilize the shoulder. When trauma or wear on the rotor cuff causes a torn rotator cuff, it can cause restricted arm movement, pain in the shoulder or burning upper back pain. This type of injury is common among athletes such as swimmers, football quarterbacks, baseball pitchers, and golfers. Treatments for an injured rotor cuff include reducing the pain, swelling and burning by icing the painful area and refraining from any movement or exercise that causes pain. With an injured rotor cuff, pain is an indication that the rotor cuff tears still needs time to heal. Talking on the phone while holding the receiver between your shoulder and head, without using your hands, definitely puts a strain on your upper back muscles resulting in burning upper back pain and worse. Get yourself a speakerphone or headset if you spend hours on the phone daily.