Really bad shoulder knot

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ErinAnn
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 50
   Posted 9/25/2008 10:06 AM (GMT -7)   
For a long time now I have had issues with this particular "knot' on the top of my right shoulder blade about two inches from where neck meets shoulder. This particular knot causes really sharp pain when I lean my head to the left and its really bad when I tilt my head back. This spot is much more solid than any other knots I have had. It has also made it easy for me to strain my neck it seems. I have tried heat, ice, massage and physical therapy, but the knot never goes away in the least. It never loosens or gets smaller. I take muscle relaxers as well and they dont touch it either. When I move my head its like im being stabbed in that spot, and often feels like the muscle itself is being pinched. When I was going to physical therapy, they were unable to give me the stretching exercises they wanted because of the sharp pain I was getting from this. I have tried explaining about this spot to a doctor in the past but basically got nowhere. I wish they would do an MRI and just make sure that this really is just a knot. Last night I apparently slept wrong because once again it has gotten worse and feels strained. Everything seems to pull into this one spot.

So I was wondering if anyone has any suggestions as to what this could be or if anyone has had something similar happen to them. I just got off the phone from arguing with the nurse so that I can get an appt and discuss this once again with my doctor. Its so aggravating when they just dont believe what you are saying and just pass it off as a regular knot or spasm and tell me to just give it time and keep taking my meds and using ice/heat. Im sorry but I know that this is something different, ive had plenty of knots, and Im the one having the pain I just wish they would listen to me more. cry
Yours Truly,

Erin Ann


Marlee2
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 6067
   Posted 9/25/2008 11:07 AM (GMT -7)   
Erin Ann I do think when you have fibro and you complain about a spot hurting our docs assume it is fibro related.
 
I had to get pushy with getting a CAT scan of my neck not long ago to make sure everything I was feeling was fibro. My doc was right, all I have is a little osteoarthritis going on but it put my mind at ease knowing that.
 
Tell your doc you are concerned and to humor you by doing a CAT scan or MRI to put your mind at ease. I have a new motto when it comes to my body "when in doubt, check it out". tongue It's my body and I'm the one paying for the test.
 
I do have a sore spot on top of my right shoulder although I can't feel a lump there.
 
luv and hugs
Marlee
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leemadd
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 532
   Posted 9/25/2008 2:38 PM (GMT -7)   
I have the same kind of pain and the Dr called it a shoulder girdle..Funny name I know. I am actually starting pt on monday for it

Piercings
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 326
   Posted 9/25/2008 11:16 PM (GMT -7)   
Can i ask....

Does it seem to impair the mobility of your shoulder or just the neck? Is it leading into any kind of headache? Any sort of numbness or weakness in the arm?

I'll admit that I'm not asking to be able to provide a diagnosis or even a solid suggestion, but if those things are happening then it's definitely something to stay on them about. And like Marlee said, you're the one who's paying them and if they want to be paid, then they need to be able to get you some answers about the cause and hopefully be able to provide a remedy as well.

Recently I had something remotely similar. Except mine was in the top of the shoulder. But I was unable to turn my neck certain ways and it was limiting the function of my shoulder. In my case it was determined to be what they refer to as a frozen shoulder. But I had been with it for so long that it was starting to involve the muscles all around it. Hence the neck pain. They did a cortisone injection and it didn't get rid of it, but it has really helped.

lucysgd
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 663
   Posted 9/26/2008 8:30 AM (GMT -7)   
Have you tried massage therapy?  I had a similar problem in my neck last winter.  Went to the doctor finally because I couldn't raise my arm or use my hands the pain was so bad.  He Rx'd Darvocet and Steroid.  He didn't think it was disc related, but said I was in total spasm (just by touching the area).  I had a massage therapy appt. scheduled for the next day, so I decided to hold off on the meds until after I saw her.  She is a very good neuromuscular massage therapist and she's been working with me for about 3 yrs and knows my problems and body well.  She asked specific questions about the pain - location - referral - etc. etc. and then went to work.  Long story short - I didn't need the steroid, and never took any Darvocet either. 
 
Physical therapists have not been able to help me the way that this type of massage can.  It can't solve everything, I know....but it has done more for me than meds & PT combined.  Just a thought.  And to be clear, this type of massage is a very different experience from the "spa" kind of thing, and is sometimes painful in itself - but the results are very worth it. 
 
Good luck - I hope you can get some relief....
Lucy

diagnoses:  mono 1972; postviral CFS 1997; fibro 1998; CEBV 2005; UCTD (dx limbo) 2007
meds:  occasional low dose xanax for sleep, artificial tears w/ ointment at night, ibuprophin (none of which manages the problems very well!)
 
We cannot avoid the birds of sadness flying over our heads, but we need not let them make nests in our hair. 
       ~~ Chinese saying as quoted by Helen Nearing


ErinAnn
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 50
   Posted 9/26/2008 12:06 PM (GMT -7)   
First off, I want to thank you all for your replies. I was pretty upset yesterday after talking to the nurse but luckily my doctor is easier to talk to, and I have all of you to help me too.

Piercings, It hasnt affected my ability to move my shoulder or my arm much at all. Just my neck. I cant turn my head to the left, lean my head to the left, or lean my head back without a lot of sharp pain. The pain is pretty much localized to that one area and I havent had any shooting pain or numbness thankfully. In the past when I have increased the amount of stretching I do with my neck and shoulders I have gotten headaches from it, but I dont believe this is from this particular area.

Lucy, The PT appointments really didn't help me at all. They did about 5 mins of light massage on my upper back and shoulders, then they would use the TENS unit for 10 mins which I think was probably the most helpful out of everything. They gave me a couple exercises to do at home as well but weren't able to add on any of the neck stretches because of this darn sharp pain Ive been having. Massage therapy may indeed be helpful for me but unfortunately im broke and the only way I could do this would be if my ins would cover it and somehow I doubt they will.

Today I went and saw my primary and explained what has been going on as far as this knot goes. After this exam she said she believed that its a muscle knot and trapezius strain and that usually they have the person use heat/ice, muscle relaxers, and go to PT. Since I have already tried these she said she wasnt too sure what they could do for me. She referred me to orthopedics and said that they might be able to do something for me there. Possibly cortisone injections or something along those lines. She said she was sorry and wished me luck. At least she is nice. Orthopedics called me and they set up an appt for me to get xrays next week and then to see them on Oct. 10th. Im not really sure what the xrays are for because I dont think any of this would show up on them but hey im willing to go and see what happens.

So thanks again everyone and ill be sure to update you when the time comes!
Yours Truly,

Erin Ann


SueTC
New Member


Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 5/26/2011 9:43 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Erin Ann: I just saw your post from two years ago. I'm amazed that I have the exact same problem with a knot in my neck muscle in the same position. Did you ever find a cure? Did you ever have an injection into the knot?

Thanks,
SueTC

upbeat
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 230
   Posted 5/27/2011 4:13 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Sue, welcome to the forum. I have this same knot on the top of my shoulder about half way between my neck and arm. I had trigger point injections into it and they really helped.

Maybe something to look into. Good luck.

SueTC
New Member


Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 5/27/2011 6:19 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks so much. Was it a trigger point injection of cortisone or lidocaine? I had a dozen or so Lidocaine injections all over, but not into the knot. Now I might try it again.

Sue

Deb25
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 319
   Posted 5/28/2011 5:05 AM (GMT -7)   
Erin, I had PT too and to be honest, I think it made things worse for me.  When I first started going for the PT, I only had pain on my right side.  By the time the 11 weeks were done, my left shoulder was in worse shape then the right.  They started with gentle massage, then a vibrating heating pad for 20 mins, I loved it, then more intense massage, some gentle exercising, then another light massage.  Now I have pain in both shoulders in the exact same spot you have.  They say mine probably is the cause of my daily headaches.  Any meds we have tried have made me very ill, or didn't work, so I just go day to day. 
 
I wish I had an answer for you.  All I can offer is try ice or heat.  Depending on the day, and my mood, determines which one I try.  I also have a spray called Stopain and I do really like it.  I can only find it online though.
Gluten Intolerant, Small Fiber Sensory Polyneuropathy, Gluten Ataxia, Sleep Apnea, CFS, Raynauds, Hypothyroid, Fibromyalgia

SueTC
New Member


Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 5/28/2011 9:48 AM (GMT -7)   
My neck problems began when I pulled my neck muscle while on crutches. My entire right side of neck became hard as rock and I couldn't move for three weeks. PT helped to loosen up the big problems, but as time went on, PT definitely made the knot problem worse. Later, a car accident reversed the progress of one year of PT and meds. 15 months later, I am left with this knot in the neck, that is the center of all pain which radiates from it. My smaller muscles are all out of alignment, and I have regular muscle spasms all night long when I sleep. The first injury caused muscle spasms that are centered in the neck. The car accident caused whiplash and new spasms centered in the lower part of my back.

At night, I take 1 mg Xanax, magnesium, Tylenol, and Flax-seed oil (or fish oil). All are helpful with muscle relaxation. The Xanax is a muscle relaxer and help me sleep through the muscle spasms, which go on all night long. The Xanax knocks me out, so that I am not thrashing around all night causing re-injury. Now I have a deep, quiet, healing sleep. During the day, I take fish oil. Both fish oil and flax-seed oil are anti-inflammatory; I would say 80% as good as Tylenol. I chase the pain all day long with fish oil.

A neurologist told me to stop PT, stop swimming and yoga, stop any over-the shoulder stretching exercises, and minimize board writing in the classroom. I realized writing on the board really irritated it, so I have gone completely over to Powerpoint. Riding my bike constantly involved lifting my head and turning it, but I found that riding the bike in the gym is fine.

I have had three epidural cortisone injections, one set of trigger-point injections, and 15 weeks of PT. I have seen two neurologists, a spine specialist, a pain management specialist and a endocrinologist. Now that I am seeing thing more clearly, I will ask for an injection into the knot. I'm starting massage. So far it made it worse, but she gasped when she finally found the knot, which I had not mentioned At least she validated my problem.

One day, a substitute physical therapist worked on me. She found the knot right away and proceeded to do MOB techniques on it. This involved her pressing on the knot and having me turn my head away from it. In effect, I was stretching it. She also predicted that my scalene muscles at the top of the front shoulder blade would be in pain. She started pressing on them, and she was right. No other PT has ever had this kind of insight. Does anyone know about these MOB techniques and who practices them?

Thanks for listening and responding.
Sue

mike nujac
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2011
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 7/28/2011 4:23 AM (GMT -7)   
i too had the same exact problem for years. at one point the stiffness and pain seemed to start to spread towards my back which is when i started looking for solutions. after various therapies and acupuncture sessions and medications, all of which improved the situation only temporarily, the best one i found is the oriental "half-bath". basically, it's a lower body sauna and has the philosophy based on oriental medicine.
1. fill the bathtub with hot water(temperature need to be fairly high; around 110 F)
2. set the level so that the water doesn't go above the navel.
3. 10~20 min. until you've sweated out a round(be careful not to dehydrate) that's it. take a quick shower in warm water, a glass of beverage or water immediately afterwards. one thing you wanna make sure is that your upper body doesn't touch the water during bath.
the idea is that by heating up the blood vessels in the lower body, you "heat up" the entire circulation, which indirectly helps release tensions and other aches in the upper body muscles and organs. and one of the chief principles in oriental medicine is to keep the head(upper torso) cool and feet(lower), warm.
in my case, the pain was almost completely gone after about a week or two. and since then, i only do it when i start to sense the stiffness coming back. maybe once every other week to a month or so. interestingly, the knot is still there but the pain isn't. i'd say it's worth a try. it worked for me. been an advocator ever since. good luck!
p.s.: one downside is that you keep sweating afterwards for at least about 10~20 minutes so you might end up wanting to take another shower...

Deb25
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 319
   Posted 7/28/2011 4:33 AM (GMT -7)   
Sounds great Mike, now if only I had a bathtub.  My apartment has a shower only. shakehead I hope I remember this when I find an apartment with a tub.  Thanks. smilewinkgrin
Gluten Intolerant, Small Fiber Sensory Polyneuropathy, Gluten Ataxia, Sleep Apnea, CFS, Raynauds, Hypothyroid, Fibromyalgia

camas
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2010
Total Posts : 124
   Posted 7/28/2011 9:14 AM (GMT -7)   
I also have this pain in the area you are talking about. Mine is caused by lifting
anything over 10 pounds and since it is gardening season I have really been suffering.
What I have found most useful is a good deep massage and stretching in that area,
which means I am miserable for the next day, but better the day after that it is better.
 Also I have a very good yoga instructor and I feel better after going to her classes.
 
I am going to try the hot water in the bathtub idea, it makes sense to me and
will be easy to try.
 
Sharon

bd777
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2011
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 7/30/2011 2:49 AM (GMT -7)   
Well it's not fibromyalgia! The "lump" in my right trapezius started almost 10 years ago. The first year I went to doctors, chiopracters, had it massaged, electro-stimulated, etc, etc, didn't even BUDGE it. But it had little pain. Over the years the dull ache has gotten worse, and at times I can barely stand it. It radiates into my neck, shoulder, and even down my upper back. Now, more of the area has hardened. Part of my neck is hard as a rock as well. Seems like all the muscles are beginning to freeze in that area, and the more they do, the more I can feel my nerves being pinched. I feel like someone is slowly poking a bone through my muscle or something. I have been told it is muscle, but it feels like bone. As if the bones in on my right shoulder area are rising up towards my ear. I feel like I need to constantly try to pull my shoulder/arm away and back from my neck, since it tends to want to pull together (as far as posture or when laying down to sleep). Either direction creates discomfort or pain. And now I can feel small lumps starting to form on my left side as well, same way the right side started...
Doctors are seemingly useless. Nobody even knows what it is. At first touch they think it is bone because it is as hard as bone. Then they just recommend a bunch of crap that doesn't work.
It is scary. Sometimes I think one of my nerves is just going to pop, or tear, or suddenly I will lose the ability to lift my arm! Neck pain and tension cause stress and headaches. It is an absolute nightmare.
Usually when I read other people's stories, they talk about having one small knot for a year or less. Imagine major hardening of the entire area over 10 years with almost constant discomfort and at times full on pain, with shooting pain in certain positions. I don't even know what to call what I have to research it for myself.
So please do share any resources you may find. Good luck to you.
I am a 35 yr. old female, fit and healthy otherwise. And I do not take pain medication, I just suffer with it.

azbaby1
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2011
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 10/6/2011 12:50 PM (GMT -7)   
I have a huge not in the same place. My right arm goes numb all the time when I am at work typing. I have had deep tissue massages and they worked for a little while for about a week and a half then a week and then it did not help at all. So, I started acupuncture. It also works for about two weeks at a time but I need a permanent solution. I am loosing alot of sleep with the pain. Any idea's.

almost medfree
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 1783
   Posted 10/6/2011 1:02 PM (GMT -7)   
I've had knots and what worked for me was a good physical therapist. I went to one that did a poor job for a time, they made me worse. My physical therapist is really good at getting my knots out.

Good luck.
Fibromyalgia, CFS, multiple chemical sensivity, herniated disks, spinal stenosis, osteoarthritis, ADD, and sleep apnea. I am happy to say the only medication I take is ibuprofen at night to sleep along with my supplements for sleeping. I am on a regiment of different supplements, I eat very nutritiously, and ever since my injury years ago I have been doing my prescribed stretches x2 daily.

Michael Scoop
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2011
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 10/6/2011 1:19 PM (GMT -7)   
bd777 - please email me:

I seem to have EXACTLY the same thing and would love to talk to someone who is experiencing the same issues.

Many thanks,
Michael
 
Michael, I took your email out of the post.  Anyone that uses a computer all around the world can get it that way and could spell trouble for you.  But, if you put your email address in your profile, only HealingWell people will see it.  Bd can get it that way. 
 
By the way, welcome!  I hope bd contacts you.
 
Sherrine

Post Edited By Moderator (Sherrine) : 10/6/2011 4:13:22 PM (GMT-6)


hmm213
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2011
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 10/7/2011 12:18 AM (GMT -7)   
hi, I am 37 female, with the same shoulder knot, numb arms, etc, i had mri, sleep study, all of it, my nuerologist, likes to order pricey tests then order more pricey therapies, i see nuero because my neck pain causes serious chronic migraines & tension headaches, I have vicodin, ativan, tramadol, and triptans to deal with the headaches, then have done psych therapy to try to reduce cognitive pain and sleep better, tried chiro (which I did 3x a week for the last 10 years, but insurance doesnt cover like it used to, so I cant afford it) , physical therapy, tried too but way too exspensive, I went on disability for a couple months last year, but that caused too much financial strain. Yesterday, I went to my reg doc, who prescribed me cymbalta and soma, I told him I think I am immune to the other drugs, they dont even scratch the surface of the shoulder stuff, I think at this point I willing to do anything, I was thinking of trying one of those massage places like Massage envy that do long massages, they are membership based but, the bang for my buck, might be worth it because the chiro is too short of time, I feel like I need long massages to make a difference. Doc did say that I wont notice cymbalta working for a while, I am very curious and hoping it works. I have those store bought massagers and use heat pads a few times a day, seriously, I just dont know what else to do, what else is there? I am now carrying myself so differently because of the shoulder pain that it caused my rt rib cage to be in knots now, yikes, I feel like I am 100 years old:(

hypervee
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 75
   Posted 10/7/2011 5:11 AM (GMT -7)   
I'm not saying your problem is the same as mine, meaning that I'm not going to tell you that testing isn't necessary.

I'll just say that, don't be surprised if it turns out to be just fibro. I have so many problems with my neck/shoulders, that I haven't been able to wear a bra in years, and I even have to be careful what kind of collars I wear.

I also have nasty knots between my spine and shoulder blades. One chiropractor did manage to get them out, but they would come right back a few hours later. :(

I think this sort of thing is the nature of the beast, but it never hurts to be tested, just in case.

PAINPAL
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2011
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 10/9/2011 6:58 AM (GMT -7)   
Hello everyone! I just signed up and I am new to the form. Let me chime in with my history of ailments. My issue is almost identical to the ones on this site. Left side is worse than right. Waking in the morning is the worse. I do have knots all over and massage does not get rid of them.

I belong to massage envy whjich gives some minor relief but at times the next day is worse. I've had MRIs on every part of my upper back and neck. The findings are only slight abnormalities which are probably due to aging. I'm 55 years old. I've tried physical therapy, heat and icing, about a dozen steroid injections both in the office and under day surgery, every type of cream imaginable, anti-inflammatories you get the picture.

Financially I have no issues trying new things so I can tell you I've been there done that. The worst part of the day is waking up. At one time I thought it was my neck position on my pillow but I tried different positions and different pillows with no real difference. I've tried a temper PX pillow top and that was comfortable but no help.

I do take Lortab's four times a day for about 10 years and that's the only saving grace. For me the medication does help and is a mood elevator so it's a win-win. Not everybody feels the same way about this drug. As long as my liver is not being adversely affected there's no way I would stop these pills. You can get some medication called Norco that has less acetaminophen which is the medicine that affects your liver. Opiates do not affect your liver and you can live a full life without issues. It's what they use with the opiates that can harm your liver. They do this on purpose so that a person does not misuse the opiates. Like I said Norco has the least amount of secondary drugs of all pain relievers so you can take more of them without the same concern about your liver.

Some of you might try Voltaren Gel which is an anti-inflammatory and does work a little bit. Do not add water to this as it will give you a rash. You straight out of the tube.

I can tell you I took an anti-inflammatory for about three years every day called Feldene and it really helped to the point of no pain but it ruined my stomach and didn't know about until later. Now a very very careful on any anti-inflammatories that are taken orally.

I do have a Jacuzzi and I feel makes things worse so I might try one of the other posters and just emerge my lower half of my body. Just as a sidenote I had cancer 27 years ago and had radiation therapy on my neck area and upper torso. I always thought this had something to do with it.

Anyway, this seems to be a helpful site to find just anyone that has almost identical symptoms of mine. I will be checking in. Good luck to everyone!

Michael Scoop
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2011
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 2/19/2012 9:39 AM (GMT -7)   
bd777?

Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 15613
   Posted 2/19/2012 10:38 AM (GMT -7)   
Michael, if you look further up in this thread you will see a member named bd777.  Obviously you wanted them to contact you. 
 
Sherrine
Forum Moderator/Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Diabetes, Osteoporosis, Glaucoma, Scoliosis
************************
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7

Michael Scoop
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2011
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 2/19/2012 11:08 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi,

I did yes but unfortunately cannot contact directly as no email is available nor is there a private messaging system available.

Plus, if not subscribed to replies, bd777 will not receive an email to notify of replies.

Is there any alternative solution?


Kind regards
Michael

Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 15613
   Posted 2/19/2012 12:35 PM (GMT -7)   
Not that I know of.  Plus, this member has only been on that one day and only had that one post...so they definitely are not active.
 
Sherrine
Forum Moderator/Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Diabetes, Osteoporosis, Glaucoma, Scoliosis
************************
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7
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