Shoulder/arm pain & pins and needles

Discussion in 'Limb Problems' started by ali_jane1123, Feb 8, 2008.

  1. ali_jane1123

    ali_jane1123
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2005
    Messages:
    134
    Likes Received:
    0
    Can anyone give me an idea of what this is?

    About 4 weeks ago I started having sharp shooting pains in my right shoulder (along side of spine roughly level with middle/lower scapula). It wasn't there constantly but there'd be a sharp pain when moving sometimes, though I haven't been able to pin down exactly which movements cause it. Sometimes stretching as if reaching for something, other times I've been sat at my desk and just moved my head to the left and it's happened.

    I assumed it was just one of those things and that it would go away. It wasn't bothering me that much.

    I am currently exercising regularly with a personal trainer and discussed it with her. We agreed that as none of the exercises I was doing was painful that it was probably ok to continue, but that I would stop any exercise that caused the pain - none did.

    Last week the pain started to get more constant, more of a constant awareness of the pain still with the sharp pains sometimes when moving. Then I noticed that my right arm has started to ache and from the tip of my little finger down to the wrist was permanently tingly with a slight numbness.

    My GP moved my arm around a lot and said it wasn't that bad cos I still have a lot of movement, though I pointed out that it's not that I can't move, it's that it's painful when I do. He suggested it might be tendonitis and said take regular Ibuprofen for 2 weeks.

    The next day I saw a sports/remedial massage therapist who did a lot of work round my shoulder and arm and it was very painful. The next two days I was really sore and the whole area was tender to touch - I couldn't even drive because the seatbelt touching my shoulder was too painful. I was (and am) still taking the Ibuprofen but it wasn't touching the pain. Today the soreness has gone but the original pain is still definitely there. Plus I've noticed today that as well as my little finger and side of the hand being tingly/numb, it's spreading to the next finger too.

    My colleagues (nurses) say it sounds more like a trapped nerve than tendonitis. The massage therapist said she didn't find anything obvious during the treatment. I've stopped doing any exercising that involves the arms just to be on the safe side.

    Any suggestions?

    Thanks

    Ali
     
  2. biggazfromlincoln

    biggazfromlincoln
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,648
    Likes Received:
    10
    will reply later, just going out but interested in this post,
    regards
    Gaz
     
  3. Blackcrow

    Blackcrow
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    Messages:
    1,134
    Likes Received:
    0
    :hug: aLI jANE,

    it sounds like you have got a trapped nerve to me, i have trouble with my shoulder through a road traffic accident i was in, i went to phisio for 7 months, but nothing worked, i was sent for an x ray which showed i had a hook on my shoulder joint, through the accident that is pressing on my nerve or the muscle, i have to go for an mri scan to find out, im getting a lot of the symptoms that you are getting.

    take care
     
  4. Vegan Soul

    Vegan Soul
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2004
    Messages:
    378
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hiya Ali,

    my right shoulder and arm have had similar symptoms recently. I have no idea how it came about, but over one weekend about 4 months ago, my shoulder (shoulder blade, front part of shoulder) and all of my arm started unbelievably aching. I was taking codeine, pararcetomol and ibuprofen just so that I could get some sleep (the first weekend I had no sleep) and be a bit more comfortable during the day. I had pins and needles through my lower arm, wrist and hand (particularly around my thumb and forefinger). The walk-in centre and GP didn't really help much at all, just suggested it could be a trapped nerve. It did ease off a lot after a couple of weeks.

    But it came back again (worse to be honest as I had pain and numbess throught the right side of my chest and breast as well having disturbed motor control over my right arm) when I had breast surgery over christmas. Again, that has eased off for the most part. I have changed my mouse for a trackball on my computer at home and the same at work as I work on computers all day long. My shoulder still feels very nervy and almost feels like it's going to fall out of socket (I know it's not), if that makes sense.

    I just had to go the painkiller route and keep using it as much as possible.

    Lisa x
     
  5. sunanda

    sunanda
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2003
    Messages:
    7,630
    Likes Received:
    2
    LOL. As so often with these problems, one person posts and we all pop out of the woodwork!:) I too have been experiencing pain in my right arm, shoulder to wrist. I'm pretty sure it's repetitive strain injury from using my laptop too much. (No work so playing with the computer all day!) Trouble is that I sit with it on my lap because I don't have a workstation and wires, plugs etc don't give me much leeway for moving. I've now got it on my lap but raised on two cushions. Haven't been anywhere yet to have it checked - don't think the GP will help and am saving my money before forking out on acupuncture, chiropractic etc. Trouble is that it doesn't hurt while I'm actually on the computer but when i'm off it I definitely have less mobility in my arm - for example reaching up my back to fasten my bra is now difficult and painful. I'm determined not to give in to it though.
    But isn't it strange that there are so many of us having problems with out right arms? I shall be following this thread with interest.

    xxx
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  6. ali_jane1123

    ali_jane1123
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2005
    Messages:
    134
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'm sorry to hear so many others are suffering similar problems.

    Yesterday I went to the pharmacy and got some Ibuprofen with Codeine to see if that would help with the pain, but no luck so far. Also got some biofreeze, which is quite nice, but not achieving much.

    Just going for a walk this morning was painful: most of the time it was ok, but sometimes, I don't know if I stepped awkwardly or something, but a pain would shoot through my shoulder. Also sometimes if I take a deep breath. And I'm not sure if I'm imagining it, but the pins and needles feeling in my little finger and partly in my ring finger makes it feel like I can't grip things properly. I can hold things, but it feels like I can't squeeze, like I haven't got enough power there.

    I'm going to give it a couple more days then make another GP appointment to ask for a physio referral.

    Ali
     
  7. biggazfromlincoln

    biggazfromlincoln
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,648
    Likes Received:
    10
    Hi all,
    this is nowgoing to be a generalised response as so many of you are experienceing trouble, most symptoms tend to be indicative of some kind of impingment, which is a way of saying that there is some trapping of the soft tissue whhen movement occurs at the shoulder joint.
    As I have over 25 years experience of shoulder injuries I can from personal experience tell you that despite their best efforts, seeing an nhs physio will not in the majority of cases work, for these reasons, too long before appointment, too infrequent appointments, generalised generic exercise programme.
    You each need an individual approach because you will each respon differently to treatment protocols, but heres wher you start, gradually increase all ranges of movement at the shoulder joint AND shoulder girdle.

    you may have to step outside your comfort zone to achieve this so a therapist of suitable qualification would be an advantage,

    heres your first exercise,
    lay on your side with injured shoulder uppermost, put other arm under head and use it as support/pillow, next place hand with fingers pointing towards top of bed/ mat/ head end approx level with chest, your elbow and shoulder should be at 90 degrees............. now imiagine your ball/socket joint is in the centre of a clock face, move joint to 12 and six o clock and back to centre, do this at least 7 times , partner or therapsit to see movement occurs in true line between 12-6, after 7 times decrease each movement until you are back in centre, now go between 3-9 o clock same number of times, same perfect line, i bet your lines go from 2-8 o clock or similar off target lines.
    when this is complete ensure you go 7 times anticlockwise then clockwise 7 times ensuring good circular movements round clock face, i bet here you are angular in your circle movements, persist these daily before you get out of bed and when you get into bed for 1 week, try same exercise whilst you are sitting and standing . use clock face principle to do these again 2-3 extra times a day.
    ensure you can move your head, keeping your eyes horizontal a full 90 degrees each side without elevating your shoulders or twisting torso at all.
    I will post next weeks exercises ......er .......next week.
    feedback if you like and let us know how you are getting on.

    all we are trying to do here is re balance muscle length in shoulder neck area,
    obviously desist if it makes you worse, normal exercise considerations regarding health and safety are advised.
    regards
    Gaz
     
  8. sunanda

    sunanda
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2003
    Messages:
    7,630
    Likes Received:
    2
    You're very kind, gaz. If I lived nearer to you I'd book an appointment and pay you for your time! I think I'll need a little while to work out your instructions. I'll come back to you in a bit. Incidentally, if I may bring up one thing with regard to my own personal problem, there is one spot - smaller than a penny coin which is really sore when pressed hard with a finger. Seems to be the key point. it's midway between my shoulder and elbow, on the outer side of my upper arm - must be a meridian I would think. My instinct is to massage it - again with my finger tip - it's sore but not unbearable.

    xxx
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  9. biggazfromlincoln

    biggazfromlincoln
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,648
    Likes Received:
    10
    sounds like the insertion point for deltoid, called deltoid tuberosity, indicative of dysfunction in deltoid muscle,regards

    Gaz
     
  10. BIA

    BIA
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2007
    Messages:
    292
    Likes Received:
    0
    It would sound to me like either TOS or a cervical disk - I believe there are other threads with advice for either complaint.

    Basically the advice is to go and see the appropriate therapist (chiro/osteo, maybe physio) and get the right diagnosis, and the treatment plan from there. Don't be at all surprised if they need an MRI scan to confirm the diagnosis (and you can't treat without a diagnosis).

    If it IS either of those options, they're both perfectly treatable by the right professional, the wrong therapy may well cause more harm though, so be careful, and go straight to the expert.

    I'm also just off out, so I'll try to remember to have a look at the other posts in more detail tomorrow
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  11. biggazfromlincoln

    biggazfromlincoln
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,648
    Likes Received:
    10
    from experience a highish proportion of MRI scans are inconclusive, the exercises I suggested are primarily to regain full control of range of movement and muscle acitivty, As BIA says its important to get some kind of diagnosis, but again from personal experience I once saw a highly recommended Chiro, who treated me and after 2 sleeples nights in agony went to A+E , had xray and had 2 fractures of humeral head, I know its a one off but just goes to show there is good and bad in every profession.
    any updates yet Sunanda,
    Gaz
     
  12. sunanda

    sunanda
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2003
    Messages:
    7,630
    Likes Received:
    2
    Sorry, Gaz, no. Just realised I'd forgotten to try out your exercises. Will do so now and come back to you.
    BIA - I've no idea what TOS or cervical disk means but I know this is RSI from using my keyboard. I could feel it travelling from the tip of my index finger up my arm. I just dont want to go to the doctor if I can avoid it.

    xx
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  13. sunanda

    sunanda
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2003
    Messages:
    7,630
    Likes Received:
    2
    Gaz
    I tried this but, without someone to tell me I was doing it correctly, I really wasn't sure I understood what to do. There are so many possible variations: for instance, 'elbow and shoulder joint at 90 degrees' - to what?
    To the floor? Where is the elbow pointing? Out, up, down? And then with the clock face, where is 12? My head's on the floor, the side of my head resting on my bottom arm. My eyes are looking straight ahead. So where is 12? I don't want to do the exercise wrong and hurt myself. Difficult isn't it?

    xxx
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  14. ali_jane1123

    ali_jane1123
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2005
    Messages:
    134
    Likes Received:
    0
    I appreciate the info you gave on the exercises, Gaz, but like Sunanda I didn't quite work out how to do it. I'm sure it's really straight forward if I saw it demonstrated, but having it written in words I'm a bit lost.

    I found out on Monday that my Occupational Health dept can do a fastrack referral to physio for staff, so I have got a physio appt booked for next week and I'll see how that goes.

    Ali
     
  15. biggazfromlincoln

    biggazfromlincoln
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,648
    Likes Received:
    10
    appreciate that its difficult to follow.......upper arm should be 90 degrees from torso, elbow bent and flat of palm on bed,couch, 12 oclock is towards your ear, 6 oclock towards hip bone, 3oclock is closing shoulder blades together and 9 oclock towards chest, the point is that we should be able to carry out all these movements, and the circular movements should be............er .........circular it means we can use our muscles in isolation through their full range and in co-contraction again thru' full range, i use these daily and now suffer far less migraine, and my 25 year shoulder injury is manageable without anit inflammatories, pain killers, muscle relaxants etc.
    regards
    Gaz
     
  16. sunanda

    sunanda
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2003
    Messages:
    7,630
    Likes Received:
    2
    Hi Gaz
    I think I'm getting there! But is upper ground parallel to floor with lower arm and elbow on floor, or is elbow up in the air? Am I right in thinking that it's the shoulder making these circular movements (they are therefore small movements, right?) or is it the elbow?
    I too really appreciate all your trouble. I'm now identifying a line of soreness from about 3 inches above my elbow, up the outside of my arm to that spot about 3 inches below my shoulder. In line with the outside point of my elbow. Movement of my upper arm is possible but slightly impeded, as for example when I undo my bra. (Sorry - that's the only example I can think of where you can picture me bending my elbow and trying to put my hand behind my back and up towards my shoulder blades. The left hand goes much further up.) I guess in the end I'm going to have to start with the see the doctor routine and take it from there....but it's so very difficult to get to see a doctor at my practice.

    xx
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  17. BIA

    BIA
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2007
    Messages:
    292
    Likes Received:
    0
    Sorry; I've discussed it on a couple of threads already; here's the most recent.

    My thought on TOS was for ali_jane's 1st post however. For yourself I wouldn't like to comment without a full history and examination; but that doesn't sound like a typical RSI (which should hurt whilst doing the repetitive action).

    To Ali_Jane, having read your 2nd post now; I'd say it sounds most like a C7-8 disk injury with C8 radiculopathy. Chiro/Osteo/physio should all be able to help, but physio will rely on being seen often enough, and them being willing to do things to you, not just giving you exercises.

    To Gaz, sounds like a freak misdiagnosis; but as you say, diagnosis isn't an exact science, and there's good and bad in any profession. I won't comment further on that one, because I don't know if there were any indicators to suspect a broken bone.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  18. ali_jane1123

    ali_jane1123
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2005
    Messages:
    134
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks for info, BIA. I will take a printout of your post to the Physio when I see them.

    Yesterday shoulder/middle of back gave sharp pains while sitting at my desk and twisting round to pick up something over to the side. I then found it painful to move my upper back at all, particularly twisting movements. Dr who I work with said it sounded like it's seizing up. Certainly continues to be more painful since then, but if I rest and do nothing there's no pain, just the pins and needles and ache in my arm.

    Out of interest, could the exercising I've been doing have caused this? I am overweight and unfit, but have been exercising under supervision of a personal trainer and feel I haven't been doing anything that's been too difficult. The only exercise I've done that works the area where the pain started is called the cobra, where you work the muscles in the middle of the upper back by pulling the arms backwards. I did this exercise regularly for several weeks before the pain started, and continued it afterwards as it didn't hurt while I did the exercise.

    I also sit at a computer all day for work, and I don't have a good posture, so that might be a factor too.

    If I knew what the possible causes were then I might be able to avoid them in the future.

    Ali
     
  19. biggazfromlincoln

    biggazfromlincoln
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,648
    Likes Received:
    10
    Hi Ali,
    the cobra is an exercise to strengthen your rhomboids and middle trapezius, it can be a protective adaptation if you start using these muscles in the same way it would make your legs ache if you went for a ten mile run with no previous training, its important no to increase your activity by more that 10% per week that will prevent too much aching and any compensation from other muscle groups.
    Hi sunanda, elbow should be inthe air, tightness in the internal rotators sounds likely if you cant fasten your bra behind, its actually a question in my consultation for the ladies with shoulder discomfort.
    Back to Ali,
    I think your posture is the cause, as it is with the majority of my clients who experince this kind of discomfort.
    in the last 30 years we have gone form a labour intensive workforce in manufcturing and agriculture to a sedentry computer based workforce, it is not a coincidence that we suffer more stress related injuries, RSI, carpal tunnel, migraines etc
    best regards
    Gaz
     
  20. Swordfish

    Swordfish
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2006
    Messages:
    990
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hello Everyone,

    All very interesting and detailed. From my point of view there is an underlying metaphysical experience going on for those of you who are experiencing pain in your shoulder/arms etc. You are experiencing a burden and manifesting the pain for your individual reasons.

    My belief is that what was once nothing can go back to nothing with a change of thinking pattern and thought process.

    All the best to all of you
    Cheers
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature

Share This Page

Copyright © 2016 HealthyPages
Website by HealthHosts