Upper back pain can strike at any time, making even simple tasks like turning your head from side to side nearly impossible. Left unmanaged, upper back pain may even limit your movements and physical capabilities. At his practice on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, pain management specialist Alexander Kulick, MD, regularly works with patients to diagnose and treat upper back pain. If you’re suffering from upper back pain, make an appointment today by calling the New York City office or clicking the online booking tool.

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“Oh, my aching back!” is an often used expression and an accurate description of a common condition people suffer.

At the Center for Integrated Pain Management we will devise a customized treatment plan to relieve your aching back. Below is a list of back and spine conditions that the Center treats.

  • Degenerative Disc Disease
  • Upper Back Spinal Stenosis
  • Facet Joint Syndrome
  • Upper Back Spondylolisthesis
  • Failed Back Surgery Syndrome
  • Migraine Headaches
  • Upper Back Spinal Osteoarthritis  
  • Muscle Spasms
  • Intercostal Neuralgia
  • Nerve Entrapment/Radiculopathy 

A diagnosis will be made once Dr. Kulick reviews your family history, completes a thorough physical examination and conducts an in-office ultrasound. If necessary, Dr. Kulick may request that you obtain an MRI, CT Scan or additional X-rays in order to precisely determine your diagnosis and treatment plan.

To learn more about the treatment and relief of upper back conditions please contact our office at 212-867-1777.

What is upper back pain?

Upper back pain is a common musculoskeletal condition characterized by pain, stiffness, or general discomfort in your upper back, neck, and shoulders. 

The causes of upper back pain vary from person to person, but it usually occurs as a result of poor posture. If you slouch or hunch your shoulders when you sit, walk, or stand, you’re more likely to experience upper back pain.

Without proper care, upper back pain can limit your movement and physical abilities. It might also spread to other parts of your body, preventing you from going to work or participating in your favorite activities. 

What are the symptoms of upper back pain?

The symptoms of upper back pain vary depending on the underlying cause. However, telltale signs include:

  • Sharp, stabbing pain
  • Dull, throbbing pain
  • Stiffness
  • General discomfort
  • Radiating pain
  • Tingling
  • Numbness
  • Weakness

As upper back pain progresses, you might also experience difficulty doing routine tasks like taking out the trash or lifting groceries. 

When should I see a doctor about upper back pain?

If you develop upper back pain as a result of a contact injury while playing sports or in an automobile accident, make an appointment with Dr. Kulick right away. 

You should also make an appointment with him if you experience any tingling or numbness in your upper back or shoulders. 

Minor instances of upper back pain usually resolve with rest and ice. But if your symptoms persist for more than a week, you should visit the doctor.  

How is upper back pain diagnosed?

To diagnose upper back pain, Dr. Kulick does a physical exam, asks you questions about your symptoms, and reviews your medical history. 

He may also ask you to perform simple in-office exercises so he can observe your gait and posture. If necessary, he might also order a series of X-rays or blood tests. 

How is upper back pain treated?

Treatment for upper back pain depends on the underlying source of your discomfort. However, Dr. Kulick usually recommends conservative forms of treatment such as light exercise, physical therapy, ice, and rest. 

If your symptoms persist or get worse, he might also recommend lifestyle changes. For example, quitting smoking, practicing good posture, and eating a healthy, well-balanced diet all can improve your musculoskeletal health. For severe cases of upper back pain, surgical intervention may be necessary.

To learn more about treatment for upper back pain, make an appointment at the office of Dr. Alexander Kulick today by phone or by clicking the online booking tool.