Pain in upper arms

My symptoms have settled down a bit after taking a 3 week dose of prednisone. During a bad flare I have extreme pain in my upper arms. It does not feel like it is in the shoulder joint. It is so bad I can't sleep and I cannot even brush my hair. I mentioned it to my doc, but he seemed baffled. What could this be? I am on 10 tabs metho, paquenil(?), folic acid and I take Aleve.

12 Replies

  • Wow, sounds like me. I'm sure it's muscler too. Lately my R/A has been driving me nuts with flare-ups, pain, stiffness etc. along with taking Enbrel and pain meds I've added 800 Motrin and hitting the hot tub twice a day and I'm still in a lot of pain. It all helps a little, but I'm still not where I think I should be. Just gotta find the right meds, but until then it's pain and suffering. I'd try methotrexate injections and then find maybe a good quick acting anti inflammatory medicine like indocin or something equal to it, and yes a good pain med too. Blessings.

  • Good Morning, christsh ... I've experienced something similiar, although not as severe as yours appears to be. It doesn't feel muscular, nor in the shoulder joint itself. I have read though that RA can impact tendons and ligaments ... and am guessing that's what happening with me. I intend to discuss the possibility at my next appt. you may want to do that as well.

    May I ask what your blood type is?

  • Interesting. Thanks! I will do some research.

    Amazingly, I don't remember my blood type. I think it is the most common one?

  • Why do you ask about blood type?

  • christsh ...I'm a fan of Dr. Peter D'Adamo who's written 3-4 (very readable!) books on blood types, their origins and how the four different types can have different impacts on how our bodies process various foods. I'm a blood type B Positive ... and have just been taking an informal poll of participants here to see how many other type Bs are participating. That's why I asked.

    I was hooked when I read D'Adamo's explanation of how the blood types evolved ... in his first book, "Eat Right 4 Your Type". His explanation was fascinating and fit perfectly with my Eastern European ancestry.

    Understand please ... he's not peddling any weight loss diet! He just "talks" about the different ways different foods affect us differently and has recommendations relative to foods I should avoid, those which he call "neutral" and those he contends are particularly good for each blood type. AND he seems to go out of his way to explain ... nothing is 100%.

    But, directionally, I've found his recommendations helpful. So has my wife (a type "O") ... and particularly for her brother (a type "A"). D'Adamo's recommendation for type A's to avoid red meat was spot on with issues her brother had been having.

    He touches on RA in one of the books (can't recall which), but nothing more specific to RA than what we already know about avoiding sugar and highly processed foods.

    Unfortunately, I have yet to find a physician familiar with the possibility that blood type could be a factor in ANYTHING dietary. But, then again, diet, nutrition, or any type of holistic medicine are not typically areas of focus in medical school.

    To my mind, the very fact THAT WE HAVE 4 different blood types ... begs two questions (1) Why? and (2) what specific impact could that have on my life?

    We rely on our doc's ... and we should! But, that doesn't mean a little research and application of common sense can't also be helpful.

    Hope that helps.

  • Thanks for that info! I am going to look into this.

  • I am A RH(-)

  • I had the same thing. My rheumatologist gave me shots in all 4 joints of my shoulder an the pain went away. I am on .60 methotrexate by injection 1x a week, 400mg of plaquenil a day an folic acid. It felt like my torn rotator cuff felt like but it was just this ugly RA. Hope u get to feeling better😊🙏

  • Thanks! I will ask my doc about that.

  • I have tears in my muscles, similar to rotator cuff..I too can't sleep on either them!!! Prednisone does help but how long can I use it?

  • I don't like to use it very often or for too long. Are the torn muscles related to RA?

  • I have pain in my both my biceps, is that where your pain is? The steroids helped with that but before the steroids I actually slept with 2 ice bags on my arms. My rheum doc said it was part of the RA. Be careful with the steroids though, make your doc do a diabetes blood test, I just found out that I have steroid induced diabetes type 2. I had never heard of it, I wish someone would have told me about this. I am on the same meds as you except I can't take Aleve right now because the metho is starting to hurt my kidneys, not enough for them to take me off of it, but they will have to if the numbers go any higher on my kidney labs. You will feel better but it takes a little time. Try the ice packs when you are sitting around and see if that helps, it did me :).

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