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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2008 10:00 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 01, 2008 9:37 pm
Posts: 3
Hello Julie,

I believe that I have a pulled muscle that I would like to heal properly. I pulled this same muscle 2 years ago during light weight training (standing dumbell shoulder presses - only 10 lb weights!)...I heard a "pop" and then had months of pain (like a knife in my back...especially when I slept on my side)....the problem did not go away until I got a muscle relaxant prescription from my doctor to take before I went to sleep. I read your anatomy lesson about scalene muscles, but I think this muscle is the one that contracts when I lift my head up......I am not sure how it pulled while doing shoulder presses. I have sometimes had problems as well if I get tangled up with blankets during sleep...and wake up with this muscle in spasms and hurting....and then I have to be careful to not use my neck to avoid further spasms/pain in this muscle (makes driving hard)

Now, I have reinjured the same muscle and have been inactive since the begining of December....

When I bend my head down or twist to the right (muscle pull is under left shoulder blade) I feel pain. If I back up to a wall corner and press it into the shoulder blade....I can feel the muscle is knotted up and painful.

I have read alot about what to do in the first 72 hours of a strain...but this is now an old injury...My question for you is should I be doing regular massage now to cure this injury? I have tried to do some massage...but I have been unsure if this massage is making things better or worse. Given that this is my shoulderblade...is there a way for me to self treat this injury? Also, should I be going back to my doctor for another prescription of muscle relaxers?

I was doing great with my stretching / weight training program but have been set back by my repeat injuries....Any help you could provide would be great

Thanks

Scott


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2008 10:18 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 02, 2007 7:26 am
Posts: 2053
Hi Scott,

I agree that it's more than just the scalenes involved here. Probably the pectoralis minor is also in spasm, and so are the muscles that run along the side of your neck. When you look at http://www.carpaltunneltreatment.org and then at the scalenes, you are only looking at the anterior scalenes. There are fibers on the very side and also the back of your neck that will hold your cervical vertebrae stiff when you try to turn in the opposite direction.

Also, the posterior neck muscles; splenius capitis and splenius cervicus, will prevent you from turning in the opposite direction, and they will refer pain all the way down the upper back, right next to your spine. They are the muscles that allow you to look up to the ceiling, and if they are tight you can't look down toward the floor.

Another muscle that is probably involved is the levator scapulae. This muscle raises your shoulder up, the nickname is "the shrug muscle." However, if the muscle is tight it will pull on the 3-6th cervical vertebrae and will also prevent you from turning in the opposite direction because they are too tight to lengthen during the turning of your head. It will also be beneficial for you to learn how to self treat the trapezius muscle since this one originates along the length of your cervical and thoracic spine. When it's tight, you can't turn toward the opposite side.

Do you have my book, either The Pain-Free Triathlete or the new ebook Treat Yourself to Pain-Free Living? Both of these books teach you how to treat the neck muscles, as well as the rest of the body.

It's important for you to learn how to self-treat these muscles Scott. You certainly don't want to have to take muscle relaxers frequently, they only mask the problem and don't cure it. You can work each of these muscles out, and by knowing how to do it, you could make it a part of your regular workout routine, especially when you've had an intense session.

Wishing you well,
Julie


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2008 12:42 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 01, 2008 9:37 pm
Posts: 3
Thanks Julie for the reply,

I Decided to dig deeper to better understand my problem and after a while on Wikipedia looking at all muscles on the back, I think that this particular muscle pull is most likely one of the Rhomboid muscles because I tend to feel the most pain and "knot" along the edge of my shoulder blade (this morning woke up with burning sensation there).... I see the Trapezuis is also in that area, but I really have to dig down to hit the sore spot and if I understand the anatomy drawings the Rhomboid muscles are underneath the trapezius. I have no problems rasing my shoulders so I do not think the Levator scapula muscle is damaged. I most likely have problems as well with the two splenius muscles because I really feel stiffness and pain when I try to stretch my neck (looking down or to the side)...but this pain radiates down to the edge of the shoulder blade as well....I might be wrong here but I am guessing that these splenius muscles are connected some how to the Rhomboid muscles and they thus work together.

Which one of your books shows how to treat a torn Rhombus muscle? I have stopped training...and feel a little better only to feel pain when I try to stretch my neck and shoulder blade muscles again....and many days I just wake up in pain from sleeping on my side (I think this sleeping position somehow pulls on the rhomboid?).....

I have now stopped upper body weigh training completely and am only doing my stretching, abdominals and leg exercises now until I heal properly.

Thanks again for your help

Scott


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 8:22 am 
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Joined: Tue Oct 02, 2007 7:26 am
Posts: 2053
HI Scott,

It's great when a person really looks at their body and figures out what is most likely causing the pain. While I agree that the rhomboids are probably the muscle that is causing the pain, I have found in the vast majority of cases that the anterior scalenes is the real cause of the problem. The reason is the anterior scalenes trap the nerve that goes to the rhomboids. When the nerve is being impinged it sends a message to the rhomboids to contract. That's why people will treat the rhomboids and get relief for a short time, but then it will come back again.

I'm having two problems right now, one of them is exactly what you are describing with the rhomboids. The only time I get relief is when I treat the anterior scalenes, and then move to the lateral scalenes. I would suggest you consider getting the Julstro System (http://www.carpaltunneltreatment.org). The Julstro System teaches a lot more than is currently shown on the website (we're getting ready to change that fact), and you'll learn how to do the best neck treatments with that System. While we haven't put it onto the site yet, I'm going to include a copy of my newest ebook Treat Yourself to Pain-Free Living with the Julstro System. It will hopefully be added this Thursday... that's the goal anyway.

Once the ebook is added to the Julstro System, you'll be able to have the treatments for everything in your body. Then you can do the scalenes and follow up by treating the rhomboids directly.

Keep an eye on the website so you'll see when it's been finished.

Wishing you well,
Julie


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 2:11 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 01, 2008 9:37 pm
Posts: 3
Thanks again Julie

I agree that I need to better stretch all my neck and shoulder muscles! Will be checking out your site and system.

Scott


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2008 1:39 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 02, 2007 7:26 am
Posts: 2053
Good, I'll look forward to working with you to resolve this situation.

Wishing you well,
Julie


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