Middle back complaints

About middle back complaints:

  • Anatomy of the middle back
  • Symptoms of middle back complaints
  • Causes of middle back complaints
  • What is the source of middle back complaints?
  • Treatment of middle back complaints

middenrugklachten chiropractie

People with middle back complaints experience this complaint as pain or stiffness. Depending of course  on the type of complaint and how long the injury has existed. By far the largest group of middle back pain, approximately 90%, is non-specific middle back pain because doctors cannot find a direct cause. These complaints can be a result of strain and muscle fatigue or an overload of neck ligament. Chiropractic MoveWell is specialized in complaints of the middle back. Please read on if you would like to know more about middle back complaints.

Anatomy of the middle back

The middle back consists of twelve vertebrae. This is called the thoracic spine. It is the orange part in picture below. It is the most stable part of the spinal column because the ribs are wrapping this part of the column. Between the vertebrae are intervertebral discs. These intervertebral discs tend to work like cushions. In other words, they operate like shock absorbers. Facet joints are also located between the vertebrae, and these act as hinges. Together with intervertebral discs, the spinal facet joints make the spine flexible.

anatomie wervelkolom rug

The spine is like a house for our nerves. The nerves attach your body through the spinal cord to your brain. The back and neck have approximately seven layers of muscle, from tiny small muscles to big strong muscles. The lower back can only function well if the whole structure, the combination of the joints, muscles, ligaments and nerves, operates in harmony. A middle back complaint can often be related to an injury to one or more of the above mentioned parts.

Symptoms of middle back complaints:

The symptoms of middle back complaints often reveal themselves as pain and limitations. The pain is often felt in the lower back, but sometimes higher as well. Middle back complaints can also lead to pain in the neck and lower back complaints. Sometimes the middle back complaints can be associated with stiffness and restriction of movement. After a detailed intake a chiropractor at MoveWell will explain more about the different types of complaints. Back complaints can be very different.

Causes of middle back complaints

Spit rugklachten chiropractie Sudden incidental causes like lifting, falling, a sudden movement or accident.
Spit rugklachten MoveWell Gradual causes occur when one has pro longed poor posture (sitting, standing or lying), lack of exercise, weak abdominal and back muscles, a lot of lifting, bending and twisting (throughout a longer period of time), stress, obesity, pregnancy or old age (wear out).

What is the source of middle back complaints?

The fixation of one or more vertebrae or joints causes tension in the lower back. Nerves are getting irritated and the surrounding muscles begin aching which then leads to an injury. In the following image the explanation is visualized.

lage rugklachten ontstaan

When you look at the image, you will see a vicious circle. Once you recognise that, it is not so hard to explain what causes middle back pain, lower back pain or other joint problems. Almost all the problems arise in the same way, by overloading. Is your everyday posture at work (desk, truck) incorrect? Do you sleep in the wrong position and/or in an uncomfortable bed? Do you always lift up from the back? Then it’s not so strange to imagine that this affects the joints and they get overloaded. If you still keep it up then it is only a matter of time before the pressure in a joint will rise so high that it becomes irritated.


Joints are actually nothing more than hinges. If a hinge of a door is squeaking, almost everybody knows that the tension on the door is too high. With a continuing pressure on the hinge or joint it is possible that the irritation will be followed by pain. There is a Dutch saying which states that it is the proverbial water drop that overflows the bucket. The pain signal results in a growing tension in the muscles. To illustrate: if your hand accidentally touches a heater, your reflexes will pull it back fast.

Middle back pain MoveWell

If you have a middle back complaint almost the same reaction occurs. With a high pain signal there is a contraction of the muscles. The body tries to protect you so as not to aggravate the painful spot. When you ignore this signal and you keep burdening the irritated spot, it will lead to more pain. The vicious circle at the onset of middle back pain can occur suddenly; then “shoot down your back” or the vicious circle can build up gradually over years due to increasing pain.

Treatment of middle back complaints:

The chiropractor at MoveWell finds out where the obstruction (in movement) is located, and then proceeds with treatments, exercises, training and advice on posture in order to solve the problem. Read more…