Shoulder Blade Pain (Scapula)

What are Shoulder Blades and Their Location?

Present on top of our backs shoulder blades is flat and triangular shaped. These blades are adjoined to the upper back, arm and neck muscles and also to the collar and upper arm bones.

Causes of Pain in the Shoulder Blade

Shoulder blade pain is caused due to several reasons like psychological stress, sitting in a bad posture for an extended period, overuse of the shoulder, physical injuries, lung disease and disorder.

Under certain typical conditions, it can cause pain on the right side or left side or between both the blades. The conditions which cause pain in each of the places are –

  • Pain in the Right Shoulder Blade – It caused by Pelvic inflammatory disease, liver cancer, stomach, appendix, ovary, and gallstones.
  • Pain in the Left Shoulder Blade – Heart, Pancreas, Spleen conditions and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
  • Between the Shoulder Blades – It caused by a peptic ulcer, gastritis, broken vertebra, scoliosis, aortic dissection, oesophageal cancer and Hodgkin lymphoma.

Pain in the Shoulder Blade

Common Symptoms of Shoulder Blade Pain

In diseases which affect the neurological system, numbness, burning or tingling sensation witnessed. In a migraine or muscle tension, tingling can felt.

Crepitus – If a popping sound heard when the shoulder moved, then that is because of the shoulder was broken or even the ribs.

Leading causes of Pain in the Shoulder Blade in different organs –

Organs which can cause shoulder blade pain

  1.    Muscles (Upper Back)
  2.    Tendons (Shoulder area)
  3.    Bones (Spine and Scapula)
  4.    Nerves
  5.    Chest Organs
  6.    Abdominal Organs
  7.    Shoulder










Chest Organs




Shoulder Pain


Treatment for All Types of Shoulder Pains
  • Ice Packs – Ice packs help in reducing pain and also the swelling. Wrapping ice in a cloth also helps, applying it in the affected area for 20 minutes, three to four times a week.
  • Rest
  • Initially, it is always recommended to rest your shoulder so that the pain subsides.
  • Dry Needling
  • It helps in myofascial pain syndrome, but the effect is not very long lasting.
  • Heat Pads
  • Myofascial pain syndrome gets relieved with the aid of heat pads.
  • Sling

A sling is primarily worn to minimize the movement of the affected shoulder. The healing is encouraged at a faster pace with the help of a sling. After it is taken off, few exercises recommended by the doctor, which can practice every day.


Surgery is required when there is a damaged shoulder nerve, adhesive capsulitis, pinched nerves, etc.


  •    Ibuprofen Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines (NSAIDs) help in relieving the pain.
  •    In muscle spasms, muscle relaxants assist in relieving.
  •    In rheumatoid arthritis, brachial neuritis, polymyositis, etc. steroids help in treating.

Scapular Stretching Exercises

The exercises involving the shoulder blade assist in relieving the pain and also the stiffness of the shoulder joint. But it is strictly recommended not to use immediately after suffering from an injury.

Vapocoolant Spray

In muscle strain or any bruise, this spray helps in reducing the pain to a large extent.


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