Shoulder Blades Pain: Everything you wanted to know

From muscle contractions to inflammation and injury, many things can cause shoulder blade pain. Read on to find out what causes shoulder blade pain, how it is diagnoses, and what are the best treatment strategies.

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Short and sweet

Thin, flat, and triangle-like, the scapula is located in the upper back and is considered one of the most important components of the shoulder. The scapula, also called shoulder blade, makes the connection between the clavicle and the arm bone, allowing the shoulders a wide range of motion.

What causes shoulder blade pain?

Many factors can cause shoulder blade pain, which many people mistake for back pain. A common cause for scapula pain are muscle contractures or muscle “tightness,” though exposure to intense cold can also trigger it.
However, in some less common conditions, shoulder pain indicates much more serious illnesses. What’s more, sometimes the pain in the scapula comes from a different source, like a nearby bone, muscle or tissue.
Other causes include factors such as carrying heavy loads, sleeping in inappropriate positions, accidents that damage the bone, infections, and even illness or injury to nearby organs (lung, stomach, heart, etc.).
Some believe that ongoing stress can also be manifested as shoulder pain.

What does scapula pain feel like?

Scapula pain sometimes radiates to the neck and hands, and of course, to the shoulders themselves. Pain in the scapula can be generalized or focused, segmented or dull. In some cases, pain is exacerbated when performing certain movements of the hands or shoulders.

How is scapula pain diagnosed?

Your doctor will try to rule out the presence of other diseases or medical conditions (some severe), that show up as shoulder pain. To do this, they may order imaging or diagnostic depending on your symptoms.

Is scapula pain dangerous?

As mentioned above, during particularly severe pain, a medical examination must be taken to rule out other health conditions.

How is scapula pain treated? Can advanced technology help?

When severe problems have been ruled out, shoulder pain treatment will include mild stretching exercises, professional massages, immobilizing the painful area, moderate rest, pain relievers, and more. In some situations, you will be advised to do physical therapy, where you will learn to perform exercises designed for muscle relaxation and strengthening.
At-home pain management technologies can also help. One of the best of its kind is “Solio,” a lightweight, simple and user-friendly device. “Solio” uses radio waves that allow for the treatment to penetrate deep inside the tissues. Solio handles a large range of pain (but not all of them, of course. Please refer to the Consumer Newsletter or the information on this site for more information). When you use Solio, you can feel the pain healing process thanks to the combination of technologies and the sense of warmth that penetrates deep inside the shoulder blades.

How is shoulder pain treated with “Solio Alfa Cure Plus”?

Pain in the shoulder and shoulder blade area may radiate from the neck area. In such cases, it is not necessary to treat the shoulder blades / shoulders, but only the neck area.

In the picture you can see a division into shoulder and shoulder blade treatment areas.

1 – Shoulder joint area

2 – Upper shoulder blade

3 – Lower shoulder blade

Method of treatment: apply a thin layer of gel on the device, place it on the area being treated and start sliding the device over the entire treatment area shown in the picture for 15-20 minutes once a day per area. Treatment with the device at level 3 (you must watch the instructional video before using the device for the first time). If you feel excessive heat during the treatment, you can slightly increase the treatment area so that the heat is distributed over a larger area.

It is necessary to keep treatment up once a day in order to benefit from the optimal result from the treatment.  Do not stand still in one place. Maintain steady, slow movement throughout the entire duration of the treatment.

Please note that the treatment time refers to one area only. The treatment time should not be divided between two or more areas as this will reduce efficiency of the treatment.

how to treat shoulder pain

If the pain does not originate from the neck area, the shoulder or shoulder blade should be treated. There are a number of cases (especially in the shoulder area) in which the pain is felt in a certain area, while a different area needs to be treated. For example, many people suffer from pain in the shoulder joint area (1) when the area that needs to be treated is the shoulder blade (2), in other cases, some people suffer from pain in the shoulder blade area (2) while the area that needs to be treated is the lower shoulder blade (3).

How do you know which area to treat? Start in the painful area (for example shoulder joint 1), do at least 5 treatments. If there is relief, continue treating the same area. If no relief is obtained after 5 treatments, move to the adjacent area (2).

If the pain comes from the direction of the shoulder blade, start in zone 2 and if there is no relief after 5 treatments, move to zone 3.

Another option is to get a professional diagnosis by a physiotherapist who knows how to target the exact area for treatment. We work in cooperation with a large number of leading physiotherapy institutes in Israel and will always be happy to recommend a professional physiotherapist who can diagnose you (fees to be paid directly to the physiotherapy institute).

Coordination of expectations: Once you locate the correct and most effective area for the treatment, you will feel relief after 3-6 treatments. Treatment should be continued until the pain is reduced.

It is also important to take care to rest the treated area during the treatment days and to avoid overload on the area

How can I avoid shoulder blade pain in the future?

Maintaining a proper posture will help you prevent shoulder blade injuries in the future.

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Ratings and Reviews
See how Solio can help shoulder blade pain

90% of 100

Jon Ryan

I live in: U.S.

Have been using Solio for:  4 weeks

Age:  32

I can’t believe how impressed I am with this product. It exceeded my expectations. I can go on about how it looks and the technology, but really – I think the results are more important. I have upper back pain between my shoulder blades and it radiates to my neck. It helps me reduce pain and feel a big difference. I warmly recommend.

90% of 100

Axel Williams

Lives in: New York

I have been using Solio for: 6 weeks

Age: 29

Believe me when I say it works. I have sports injuries, especially in my upper back and shoulder blades and I use this after I work out. It’s great.

100% of 100

Michel L.

Lives in: Boston, Massachusetts

Have been using Solio for: 4 weeks

Age: 34

I had terrible pain in my shoulder blades. We moved to a larger place after our baby girl was born. During the move, I did some heavy lifting that apparently, I shouldn’t have done. The pain didn’t go away for almost 3 weeks before I decided to try the Solio device. It has been great, and I’m so relieved! I can pick my daughter up without crying in pain. Thank you, Solio.

95% of 95

Tom Keith

Lives in: Dallas, Texas

Have been using Solio for: 1 week

Age: 47

I love this machine! It’s easy and extremely effective. I just got this and I am very pleased with it so far. I have pain between my shoulder blades as a result of a car accident. I’m in physical therapy now for it and I got this device to help me at home. It is also FDA-approved.

Doctor Testimonials

"I am familiar with the use of LLLT, LED and Bi-polar RF energies for a wide range of applications, especially in indications where reduction of inflammation and stimulation of healing are required. Therefore, I was not surprised when I came across the same combination of energies utilized for pain reduction and healing in Solio Alfa Plus – a self- treatment device. I recommended Solio Alfa Plus to some of my patients, as part of their post-surgery recovery regimen. All the patients who used Solio Alfa Plus reported smoother healing and shorter downtime following surgery."Stephen Mulholland, M.D. Plastic and reconstructive surgery, SpaMedica, Toronto, Canada

"I tried Solio Alfa Plus on a number of patients who are actively involved in sports and in tennis for the treatment of Tennis elbow(/lower back/neck). I was so impressed with the results that I decided to let all of my patients with complaints about pain try it too instead of various topical creams/drugs that I prescribe to them. Most of these patients experienced marked reduction of pain, and their healing time reduced significantly. They all reported that the device was very easy to use, and none of them reported side effects or adverse reactions."*Tina S. Alster, M.D.Director, Washington Institute of Dermatologic Laser Surgery Clinical Professor of Dermatology, Georgetown University Medical Center

"In my dermatology practice, patients come to me with many different skin problems and resulting pains. As it happens, medications, be they topical, ingested or injected, are not always the best way to proceed, due to a particular patient’s allergies, or possible bad reactions, side effects, or any number of other reasons. In those cases, my patients have had very positive results after using Solio Alfa Plus therapy for alleviating various forms of topical skin pains. The device can also be used in conjunction with medications since it can assist the healing process and speed up pain relief. Because this device produces 3 energies - LLLT, IR and Bi-polar RF, it can target problems on the surface of the skin, as well as all the way down to the dermis layer of the skin, which means that Solio Alfa Plus is applicable to many of the problems that my patients suffer from". Judith Hellman MD, Associate Clinical Professor of Dermatology, Mt Sinai Hospital, NY, USA