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What Are the Common Causes of Shoulder and Breast Pain?

A poorly fitting bra can cause pain.
Improper bra support can cause shoulder and breast pain.
A pinched nerve may be due to overuse, such as occurs in sports like tennis.
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  • Written By: K. Gierok
  • Edited By: John Allen
  • Last Modified Date: 21 November 2014
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Shoulder and breast pain can not only be uncomfortable, they can also be quite frightening. In most cases, such pain is caused by large breasts that are not properly supported. Another common cause is a pinched nerve, which is most successfully treated through surgery. In more severe cases, pain may be caused by a heart attack or other type of cardiovascular emergency. Those who believe they are suffering from a heart attack should seek medical assistance as soon as possible.

One of the most common causes of pain in the breasts and shoulders is, in fact, due to excessively large breasts. Women with large breasts are especially prone to pain when they wear bras that are not sized appropriately. In addition, those with weak back muscles may also experience pain because of their breasts. In most cases, those who suffer discomfort because of their large breasts can use proper posture and increase muscle mass in the back and core in order to increase support. Those who still suffer from shoulder and back pain may require reduction surgery in order to completely treat the condition.

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Shoulder and breast pain are commonly linked to a pinched nerve in the shoulder. This can be caused by overuse, such as those that occur in tennis, jogging, and other similar activities. In addition, a pinched nerve can, at times, be caused by a hit, fall, or other form of accident. Though pinched nerves can be treated with some success through the use of physical therapy, in most cases, they require surgery in order for the pain to be completely eradicated. Those who have undergone surgery for this reason must often wear a stabilizing brace for several months following surgery.

In some cases, pain in the shoulder and breast may be indicative of a heart attack or other form of emergency cardiovascular situation. Women, especially, experience pain in these areas during a heart attack, along with pain along the jaw and between the shoulder blades. Those with a family history of cardiovascular disease or who have been previously diagnosed with heart disease should seek medical assistance as soon as possible if they experience such pain that does not go away with a decrease in physical activity or the consumption of nitroglycerin pills.

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