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Aching and Soreness: Understanding Pulled Lat Muscle Symptoms

Understanding pulled lat muscle symptoms is crucial in preventing further damage to the muscle. The latissimus dorsi muscle is called the “lat muscle,” It is the most significant muscle in the back and handles many upper-body movements, including pulling, lifting, and rotating the arms. When this muscle is strained or torn, it can cause severe pain and discomfort, limiting our ability to perform daily activities.   

Some common symptoms of a pulled lat muscle include sharp pain in the back. It causes difficulty lifting the arms and a limited range of motion in the shoulders. It is a must to understand these symptoms to identify the condition and seek appropriate treatment. 

Treatment options may include rest, ice, compression, and physical therapy.  A medical professional should assess the injury and provide proper treatment if the symptoms persist. Ignoring the signs of a pulled lat muscle can lead to further complications and prolonged recovery time. 

Thus, it is a must to understand the symptoms of a pulled lat muscle. Also, implementing preventive measures, such as proper warm-up and exercises

Symptoms of a Pulled Lat Muscle

Here are some common symptoms of pulled lat muscles. Knowing this lets you manage with a pulled lat muscle and return to everyday activities with an excellent back health score

Aching And Soreness as Primary Indicators 

Pulled lat muscles are a common injury among athletes. It is primarily those who engage in physical activities that involve repetitive arm and shoulder movements. When this muscle is pulled, it can cause significant pain and discomfort. It can result in restricted mobility and decreased performance in sports.  

One of the primary indicators of a pulled lat muscle is aching and soreness in the back near the shoulder blade. This pain can be intense, especially during movements that involve the upper body, such as lifting or throwing. 

In some cases, the pain may also radiate down the arm or to the chest, making it difficult to determine the exact location of the injury. Soreness and tenderness may also be felt when pressing the lat muscle or stretching the arm overhead.

Sharp Pain With Specific Movements 

When the lat muscle is pulled, performing activities without experiencing severe pain can be challenging. The symptoms of a pulled lat muscle often include sudden, sharp pain that can be felt in the mid-back or shoulder blade area. This pain may worsen when performing specific activities. 

These activities are lifting heavy objects, reaching overhead, or twisting the body. In some cases, the pain may also radiate down the arm and limit mobility or range of motion.  

Limited Range Of Motion And Muscle Stiffness 

A limited range of motion and muscle stiffness can be a frustrating and uncomfortable experience. A pulled lat muscle can occur when the fibers are overstretched or torn, leading to pain, tenderness, and muscle stiffness. In more severe cases, it may even result in difficulty breathing, as the muscle plays a role in breathing mechanics.  

To address the symptoms of lat muscle, it is a must to seek medical attention. as prolonged inactivity can exacerbate the condition and lead to further complications. Treatment options may include rest, ice, and medication to ease pain and inflammation. 

Physical therapy can also help restore the affected muscle’s range of motion and flexibility and prevent re-injury. 

Potential Referral Pain To Other Areas 

The latissimus dorsi muscle is in the back and spans from the upper arm bone to the lower spine. It plays a crucial role in arm and shoulder mobility. When the muscle is strained, it can result in sharp pain, limited mobility, and potential referral pain to other areas.   

Referral pain occurs when the pain from the injured muscle spreads to other body areas. In the case of a strained lat muscle, the pain can radiate to the shoulder, upper back, and chest. The referral pain can be intense and hinder daily activities, requiring prompt medical attention. 

End Note

Pulled lat muscle can cause severe pain and referral pain to other areas. It makes it essential to seek professional medical attention. Individuals should take necessary precautions to prevent further damage and rest the muscle while undergoing treatment and rehabilitation. With the right care, individuals can recover from a strained lat muscle and return to their daily activities.

See you in my next post…’til then, be healthy and live fully!

Dr. Lex Gonzales
Dr. Lex Gonzales, PT, DPT has been a physical/physiotherapist for over 24 years and is an award-winning author and keynote speaker. On he provides quality information and practical solutions you can use to improve your health and function.