Your neck and shoulders contain muscles, bones, nerves, arteries, and veins, as well as many ligaments and other supporting structures. Many conditions can cause pain in the neck and shoulder area. Some are life threatening (such as heart attack and major trauma), and others are not so dangerous (such as simple strains or contusions).

Shoulder and Neck Pain Causes

Most shoulder and neck pain results from injury to muscles and ligaments. The spinal cord, heart, lungs, and some abdominal organs also can cause neck and shoulder pain. Here are some examples:

  • Broken collarbone: Falling on your outstretched arm can cause your collarbone to break.
  • Bursitis: A bursa is a sac over the joints to provide a cushion to the joints and muscles. These bursa can become swollen and painful after injuries.
  • Heart attacks: Although the problem is the heart, heart attacks can cause shoulder or neck pain, known as “referred” pain.
  • Broken shoulder blade: An injury to the shoulder blade usually is associated with relatively forceful trauma.
  • Rotator cuff injuries: The rotator cuff is a group of muscles at the shoulder. These muscles can be injured playing sports with a lot of throwing or after repetitive use over a long time.
  • Shoulder or A-C separation: The collarbone and shoulder blade are connected by a ligament. With trauma to the shoulder, this ligament can be stretched or torn.
  • Whiplash injury: Injury to the ligamentous and muscular structures of the neck and shoulder can be caused by sudden acceleration or deceleration, as in a car accident.
  • Tendonitis: The tendons connect the muscles to the bones. With strain, the tendons can become swollen and cause pain.
  • Gallbladder disease: This can cause a pain referred to the right shoulder.

Contact a San Jose Shoulder and Neck Pain Relief Chiropractor today at 408.295.5559 or EMAIL US NOW