shoulder/arm pain

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Hello~Kitty
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 610
   Posted 4/6/2011 2:06 AM (GMT -6)   
Hey everyone, sorry I have been gone for so long. My internet is still out then my computer and laptop both broke and I got a g-tab for my birthday and I have been spending the last few weeks learning how to use it and my neighbor is letting me use her internet, but I don't get the best signal.

Anyhow,about six weeks ago I did something to my left shoulder that I have no idea what happened, but my upper back, my left shoulder, back of my upper left arm, hurts like crazy. And the lower arm and my hand is always numb and tingling. My shoulder and back has aching and sometimes stabbing pain and the back of my upper arm feels like the skin is burning. I went to the emergencyroom about a month ago, my doctor can't see me (which is a whole other issue that makes me angry) and he said the muscles where messed up and their was alot of swelling. He gave me an arm sling to wear for a few days, but that just made it worse having my arm in that position.....I can't sleep,I can't get comfortable, and it isn't getting any better. I do ice and heat, soft stretches, take ibuprofen and cylebrex and methacarbanol which I got from the er, but I'm almost out. They didn't do any xrays but the doctor said it seems to be muscle related and not bones....

And my favorite gp doctor left last September and the doctor that took over has no idea what he's doing and I can never get an appointment with him, they keep saying to call back In two weeks, for six weeks straight. They supposedly don't scheadule more then so many weeks out. And because of my stupid medical government insurance wont let me find anyone else, and even if they did, theirs only two clinics that take Medicaid and the other one I was with for years and they where even worse, and now this clinic I'm going to is turning into the other Clinic that I left. So no where else to go for now.

Also my doctor that I see for my subutex scripts has a me on cymbalta for over three years and he upped it to 120 mg at our last appt. But my insurace wont pay for it. So he called in the generic for effexor er 150mgs. And he expected me to just switch, he assured me that this was fine, but I don't see how....has anyone here ever jumped from one high dose
antidepressant to another?? I took the cymbalta in hopes that it would help my pain, and it has controlled my severe migraines, I'm scared of cymbalta withdrawals even if taking the effexor....

Sorry for all my whinnying, nobody I know wants to listen, they think my shoulder issue should be gone by now, so they think I'm lying. Most of my chronic issues are in my lower back and legs, so this is a whole new problem for me. I'm more worried about the numbness in my hands, like they're always alseep, but its 24/7. Does anyone here have problems that sound like this and have a diagnosis, so I can research it, and IF I ever get in to see my doctor I can have him check for it or send me to a specialist that can test it nd diagnose it?? I don't know where to start, I'm new to this shoulder issue. Could it be coming from my upper back???

Thanks,
kittyy
DX-Pancreatic Divisum, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Fibromyalgia, Myofascial Syndrome, Migraines, Allergies W/Asthma, Depression W/Anxiety/Panic disorder, Lower back Disc issues

Betsey Ross
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2011
Total Posts : 1056
   Posted 4/6/2011 2:54 AM (GMT -6)   
Kitty Kitty

I am so sorry to hear about your issuses. that is so frustrating. I have no suggestions fot you but I am just letting you know i am here for you. Keep us posted when you can Numbness in your hand comes from shoulder issues. Pinched nerves or something. That is all I can help you with. Sorry. Hang in there.

Soft Hugs

Betsey
crushed lower knee and vertical fx of yibia/external fixator placed/plates and screws and tried to place big pieces of cartiledge under knee cap/tremendous pain in affected legcontinously without improving/allergic to metal in left leg/leg isnt straight/need metal removed in July/wait 6 months for healing/then toatal knee replacement/straighten out leg/more phsyxical therapy/take opana er

billyf27
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2010
Total Posts : 38
   Posted 4/6/2011 4:44 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi, It could be TOS ( Thoracic Output Syndrome). I have it.
 
 

Tirzah
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 2317
   Posted 4/6/2011 9:43 AM (GMT -6)   
Have you tried seeing an osteopath? Or a good napropath? That's helped me. They've done traction -- which helps a lot -- and massage and on rare occasions ultrasound on my shoulder. Also, you might try picking up one of those soft cervical collars at a medical supply. But really, the traction is what helped the most for me.
Oh, one other thing. You can try ducktaping 2 tennis balls together & you place them right at that bone at the bottom of your neck/top of your shoulders in the center. Just lie there for 2 minutes (you can increase it to 5 if you can take it). Sometimes I will also move the balls down to the space between my shoulder blades & that helps.

Beyond those basic tips, one other thing that I know sometimes causes me horrible pain in my shoulder, shoulder blades, neck, base of skull, upper back is somehow related to my hand/wrist. I had one doc dx me with tendinitis in my thumb. I don't understand it except that the nerves are connected b/c my wrist/hand/thumb doesn't hurt. But when I put on a wrist guard, miraculously my shoulder & upper back feels better. So weird.

I sure hope they figure out something to help you!!!

blessings,
Tirzah

Rhaevin
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 230
   Posted 4/7/2011 1:08 AM (GMT -6)   
Kitty, have they done MRI's and x-rays to confirm muscles, ligaments, tendons, and bones are all still normal? If that's the case you might want to see a pain specialist and let them begin the process of elemination.
 
Another option is a chiropractor, provided x-rays and MRI's are clean. Let him/her know of any pre-exsisting spinal conditions -- bulging discs, spine issues, neck injuries, etc. Frequently they will do an x-ray as well to check the area before working there. Sometimes numbness and tingling in one or both hands can be pinched nerves, and it also explains a measure of the arm pain.
 
However I had something similar. I had hurt my arm at work, my wrist. They thought it was just tendonitis, put me in a splint, gave me drugs, and eventually sent me to physical therapy. But the physical therapy made the pain worse. All tests came up clean, yet my arm was in intense pain, and I was having bouts of numbness in my hands. I know one doctor was concerned which fingers were experiencing the issues more as sometimes it can signal heart issues. However in my case, and it took several different doctors and two years, before I finally found someone who could figure out what I had/have.
 
I have CRPS, formerly known as RSD. It's a nerve disorder that you can look up easily on the internet. Mine started in my hand and wrist and over the years has spread to include my entire right arm and parts of my neck now. I would be more then happy to tell more, but lately my hand has gotten worse and typing is starting to become an issue for me.
 
Typical disclaimer: I am in no way shape or form a medical doctor or nurse. I do not claim to be such. I do not make diagnosis', I am merely pointing out a similarity in symptoms. Only a trained professional has the ability to make an honest diagnosis.
 
Originally injured 10/26/2007 - Initial diagnosis; Tendonitis
Spent next year seeing specialist after specialist; Bone, Muscle, Hand, Neurologist, Chriopractor, Physical Therapist...
Went through a battery of tests, multiple MRI's
11/16/09 I was finally diagnosed CRPS - Stage 2
Permanently disabled, on Percoset.
February 2011 successful SCSU trial
No surgeon willing to do my SCSU Implant

Hello~Kitty
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 610
   Posted 4/7/2011 2:26 AM (GMT -6)   
Thank you so much for the replies and ideas!!!! Its always so wonderful to know that I'm not the only one who suffers with things like this, that I'm not alone. I'm going to look into everything you guys mentioned. The tennis balls thing sounds interesting, I'll have to buy me some tennis balls next time I go to the store. I find the burning feeling on the back of my upper arm very weird, could this be some type of nerve issue also like the hand numbness??

I was hoping at first that this issue would be something simple, and would go away fast, like maybe I slept wrong or something, but after more then six weeks with the pain not getting any better, if not worse, this maybe a chronic issue, like I needed another chronic health issue. I guess my body decided the other million of issues wasn't enough....

I don't know how to get my GP's office to make me an appointment, I really wish my old doctor was still there. But my friend just told me today that my old doctor has a new office and takes Medicaid, so I'm gonna call tomorrow to her new office and my insurance and see if she can see me. Wish me luck, cause I know she will get to the bottom of this.

Thank you again.
kitty
DX-Pancreatic Divisum, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Fibromyalgia, Myofascial Syndrome, Migraines, Allergies W/Asthma, Depression W/Anxiety/Panic disorder, Lower back Disc issues

Hello~Kitty
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 610
   Posted 4/7/2011 2:26 AM (GMT -6)   
Thank you so much for the replies and ideas!!!! Its always so wonderful to know that I'm not the only one who suffers with things like this, that I'm not alone. I'm going to look into everything you guys mentioned. The tennis balls thing sounds interesting, I'll have to buy me some tennis balls next time I go to the store. I find the burning feeling on the back of my upper arm very weird, could this be some type of nerve issue also like the hand numbness??

I was hoping at first that this issue would be something simple, and would go away fast, like maybe I slept wrong or something, but after more then six weeks with the pain not getting any better, if not worse, this maybe a chronic issue, like I needed another chronic health issue. I guess my body decided the other million of issues wasn't enough....

I don't know how to get my GP's office to make me an appointment, I really wish my old doctor was still there. But my friend just told me today that my old doctor has a new office and takes Medicaid, so I'm gonna call tomorrow to her new office and my insurance and see
if she can see me
DX-Pancreatic Divisum, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Fibromyalgia, Myofascial Syndrome, Migraines, Allergies W/Asthma, Depression W/Anxiety/Panic disorder, Lower back Disc issues

Rhaevin
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 230
   Posted 4/7/2011 7:59 AM (GMT -6)   
Kitty, now that I've had some sleep and some coffee (always a good thing for me) and my morning percoset, my hand is willing to function for a bit longer.

Start by seeing if you can get an MRI done of that area just to confirm that muscles and tendons have healed appropreately. If they come back clean and you're still having pain you might want to see if you can find a pain management or pain specialist, and talk about nerve blocks. The nerve blocks will permit you to help narrow the field of potentials.

If you do end up diagnosed with CRPS there is a small group of us that have found each othere here on the CP forum. But I'm not surprised this isn't a side effect of the Fibro. Unfortuantely to many nerve disorders have "burning pain" as one of their side effects. However I know that I do suffer the ocassional hand numbness, and/or pins and needles sensation. The numbness happens more often, and unlike other issues anti-inflamatories do nothing for it.

Have they tried Celebrex or Lyrica yet? I have heard of alot of people with Fibro have good success with it, and while at the time my Medicaid would not cover it, I have been given Celebrex (very similar to lyrica) for my pain. Unfortunately, because I am at a "Non-Responsive" stage with my CRPS the celebrex didn't do anything except make my heart race. Now I just stick to my percoset and wait to hear whether or not I qualify for my SCS unit.

I would suggest definately starting with the MRI. Remind them they felt messed up muscles and did no x-ray; you want to confirm that everything healed properly and there wasn't another underlying issue. Be firm, be your own advocate, and dont' take no for an answer. I actually argued with a workman's comp doc once about doing a full arm MRI because I was still having pain, and he kept saying I'd had one done of my wrist, and I told him my theory that maybe my wrist pain was caused by something in my neck or shoulder, and given what my chiropractor had discovered with my neck and shoulder.... in the end I won the arguement and he did the full arm MRI; we still found nothing, but at least it was one more thing checked off the list.

The biggest problem with CRPS is that it can start over some of the most innoculous injuries. One gal her twisted her knee while hiking, I hyper-extended my wrist lifting heavy equipment, and the stories go on -- things like simple strains and sprains causing this evil disease to take root in our nerves and cause debeilitating burning pain.

Best of luck to you, Kitty, but please, feel free to ask questions and keep us informed of how things go for you. You should know as a moderator you're always welcome to come by and blow off steam as need be. *hugs*
Originally injured 10/26/2007 - Initial diagnosis; Tendonitis
Spent next year seeing specialist after specialist; Bone, Muscle, Hand, Neurologist, Chriopractor, Physical Therapist...
Went through a battery of tests, multiple MRI's
11/16/09 I was finally diagnosed CRPS - Stage 2
Permanently disabled, on Percoset.
February 2011 successful SCSU trial
No surgeon willing to do my SCSU Implant
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