Ataxia UK
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Has anyone experienced a sharp ache like pain from their shoulder that stetches right down their arm?

This pain lasted for about an hour. Later in the day I experienced the same kind of pain at the side of my head which seemed to trigger the same pain I had before down my arm from my shoulder to my hands causing slight weakness! This was all on my right side. Don't think this is ataxia related but not sure?

10 Replies

Hello Iain

I have all sorts of pain. I get a head and neck pain that effects my arm on the right side The right side seems to be affected. It goes away after a while. You should see your GP because it could be a trapped nerve or something.

Take care



Hi Iain

It doesn't sound directly ataxia related although you might have developed some problem in your shoulder related to your posture and using walking aids because of having ataxia. Or indeed it could be something completely independent of ataxia. I absolutely agree with Fifa about seeing your GP.

Apart from this pain you are getting, I hope everything else is OK.



Thanks Carol and Harriet. I feel absolutely fine now. Very possible Harriet that it could be related to my shoulder. Prior to the problem I mentioned I have on occasions experienced mild pain in my right shoulder. I don't want to bother the doctor at the moment but if It happens again I will. Thanks again


Hi Iain25

I have this pain always. I was diagnosed with Ataxia about 20 yrs ago, I did'nt have this pain then. A few years later I developed this pain and was told it was Dystonia. I don't take pills for Ataxia but take some to help Dystonia (muscle spasms in my neck), I used to have injections of Botullinum Toxin in my upper shoulder. I moved to Spain and feel that the sunny weather, healthy diet & easy lifestyle help me. There is a Dystonia society, I did'nt get the chance to contact them but maybe they have some useful information to help you. Good luck, hope you don't suffer needlessly.

Keep well



I had a pain like that, I ignored it and eventually it was there all the time, from my shoulder to the pad on my thumb. I had an MRI scan which showed that the nerve shaft in my neck was damaged. Don't ignore it, go and see someone asap. Stress and tension don't help at all, or long shifts on the computer.

Regards :)


Thanks Berejena and Zhez for your comments. I'll look into the Dystonia society site you mention Berejena. I do get a stiff neck quite often. Thanks again both.


It was interesting to read your post..... I have EA2 & FHM and use a wheelchair most of the time.... but do use 2 sticks to get to car on drive etc.... no more than a few steps....

I have developed a pain similar to what you describe..... it's a sharp pain from my left shoulder to the pad of my thumb...... sometimes I just get it for no reason... other times I get it it I use the arm eg. to open a door.... the pain in really sharp & VERY painful..... GP referred me to physio which I start next week.....

My fingers on both hands have also started to spasm and lock.... especially if using them ie eating & holding cutlery or trying to get toothpaste from the tube.... not sure if these are connected both have a real sharp pain..... Hope you get sorted...


hi Tynckas, the pain and direction you describe to the pad of your thumb is exactly the same. It's a direct nerve path apparently so normal medication won't relieve it. I have to take gabapentin now as the damage is done. Take care :)


hi,when i first stated using a walking stick after a short while i was told by my doctor i i had a frozen shoulder and he sent me to physio and the physio checked the height of my stick and it was to long,never had that problem since,also i have spondylosis which from time to time affects my right arm trapped nerve so see your doc ok and good luck


I though maybe the pain I experienced was the start of a shoulder problem but thankfully I've not had a repeat! The sharp pain in my head at the same side which happened at the same time was bothering me most. Fingers crossed there will be no repeat!


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