Levator Scapulae Syndrome

Levator scapulae syndrome is nothing but tightness of your levator scapulae muscle. The pain of levator scapulae syndrome can be localized to upper back or radiate in neck upto head (headache) or can radiate along the arm in to hand mimicking a disc disease. It can cause pain in shoulder and mimic shoulder disorders. Symptoms are many times similar of pain due to cervical disc or pain arising from cervical facet joint.


What leads to it ?

This occurs primarily due to bad posture or can be due to other preexisting neck and shoulder disease.

  • Predominantly in females and particularly with Large and pendulous breast
  • Predominantly dominant shoulder
  • Clerical occupation
  • Rounded shoulder
  • Hand bags



How is it treated ?
  • Medication – PCM, NSAIDS
  • Exercise – stretches as shown below
  • Injection – If above measures fails a injection at the origin of Levator Scapulae muscle will help in getting rid of pain.
Levator Scapulae Stretch

This is one of the important stretch for eliminating neck pain.The levator scapulae muscle often becomes tight and may be very tender where it attaches to the shoulder blade.

This is done as explained while sitting or standing.

  1. Lengthen the muscle by raising the elbow above the shoulder on the side to stretch.
  2. In this position, first rest the elbow against a door jamb. This rotates the outside of shoulder blade up and the inside of it down, which lengthens the levator scapula muscle (Image 3).
  3. Turn the head away from the side that is stretching and bring the chin down, stretching the back of the neck (Image 4).
  4. Place the fingers of the other hand on the top of the head and gently pull the head forward increasing the stretch slightly (Image 5).

Hold this for about 30 seconds to a minute

What is Corner Stretch ?

As name implied it is performed in the corner of room. This is a important stretch for shoulder and chest muscles. This will help in getting relief from neck pain.

Steps to do corner stretch :

  • Stand approximately 2 feet from the corner, facing into the corner and feet together
  • Forearms are placed on each wall, and elbows are a little below shoulder height (Image 1).
  • Lean in as far as possible without pain. (Image 2).
  • Hold for 30 seconds to a minute.
  • Repeat 3 to 5 times a day.


Share This