Thoracic pain is commonly encountered and provides a challenge in treatment and diagnosis. The pain occurs in the spine, between the neck and low back, and can be difficult to diagnose since referred pain the viscera (organs) can mimic pain of somatic origin and vice versa. The pain can be very acute and local, with referral into the chest region. At times it can be very painful to take a deep breath.
Disc lesions are a comparatively rare cause of thoracic pain due to the supportive nature of the b sternum (breast bone) and the ribcage. Pain due to a mechanical problem of the thoracic area normally reacts well to treatment.