Can hiccups cause severe pain? The answer is YES. Here’s an example: one day, a patient came in with severe pain in her mid-back. The pain was so sharp that she had been unable to sleep on her bed for a week. She said it also caused shortness of breath. She had not fallen, had not been hit, and nothing was sprained. However she did report that she had had a serious case of hiccups just before the pain started. Apparently, the hiccups caused her diaphragm to spasm, and that injured her mid-back. I treated her mid-back and diaphragm with both acupuncture and cupping. A week later I followed up with her, and she reported that the pain was gone completely after that one treatment.