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Endometriosis UK
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Shoulder and neck pain during period time is this all linked or is it just a coincidence?

Hello everyone,

I'm currently lying in bed with the most horrendous period pains. I am also suffering with really bad pain in my left shoulder and down the side of my neck.

This pain is so bad I can't move my head to the left. I have had this problem on and off for a while now. I originally thought it was to do with lifting stuff as I have my own horse. But restently I have noticed I only ever get this pain when I'm on my period and when I get flear ups in my tummy.

I have had a lap with a general gynea and no endometriosis was found. So I have changed Drs who is doing further tests because it is taking over my life!

I am currently on the pill which I take continuously for 3 months before having a break to help with my cycle. But when I do have a break my periods are awful and my shoulder and neck pain is becoming unbearable. Just wanderd if anyone els suffers with shoulder and neck pain? Or is this just a different problem altogether?

Any advice and other people's experience would be much appreciated. xxx

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How long ago did you have the lap? Did you get any shoulder and neck pain after the lap? I’m wondering if you have residual gas (co2) from the lap which is causing referred pain from your diaphragm up along your phrenic nerve. People typically get it in the first couple of days but I suddenly had it out of the blue 3 weeks after my hysterectomy. From what I have read some people have it for months. I got it when I was very bloated due to constipation and wind. Taking meds to get the wind out and get the bowels moving helped me.

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Thank you for your reply. That's interesting I did get mild pain in my shoulders after but it was no where near as bad as this.

I had my lap in June last year so it's been nearly a year.

That's a good point as well because I have had bowl trouble as well. I also have hypothyroidism which I was told can upset my bowls so I'm taking medication for that as well so I'vejust gotta wait and see. X

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Hi, I get pain in my shoulders, my chest and under my ribs every month without fail and have for the last 2 years or so now. Sometimes it's just niggling pains, other times it's awful and hurts to move. I didn't notice the link for a while but eventually noticed it comes the same time as my period. Usually the pain comes on more towards the end of my period. I am also currently lay in bed and have pain in my right shoulder and it hurts.

Hope you're ok x

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That's the same as me with the pain it's towards the end.

You poor thing I hope you are feeling better now x

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I had exactly the same pains like you but with extreme severity. I would land up in emergency every month due to extreme pain. No amount of pain killers helped me. Docs took a lot of time to realize I had stage 4 Endo. It Had formed a bridge of 12 cms around my pelvis.

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Hi Suzileverell ,

I also had severe shoulder pain during my period. Like u, My periods are pretty bad and now I am on back to back pills to help regulate my periods. I have stage 4 endometriosis and waiting to get a lap done for it. From what you have mentioned, It sounds like hidden endometriosis to me. I believe shoulder pain comes when one has adhesions on diaphragm. My shoulder pain subsided after the first lap but other horrifying symptoms still persist.

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That's interesting you say adhesions come with that because although no endo was found they told me the had to unstic my ovary from my pelvic floor wall. But because they found no endo they sent me home and said they don't know what caused it to stick.

I hope your lap goes okay I really feel for you x

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That’s strange !!! May be the docs missed your endo or may be what you have is a low grade endo coz organs sticking to each other is a symptom of endo.

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The hospital did say it's a symptom of endo but told me I didn't have it because they couldn't find any. I was then sent home with no follow up. I went back to my Drs and they gave me the notes from the hospital and it said I don't have endo and now they have moved my ovary back I'll be pain free so no need for a follow up. To be honest I wasn't impressed with the hospital at all. Which is why I've changed Drs because no one seemed to take me seriously about all of the pain I'mgetting because nothing was found. :/

I'm still quite convinced I have endo and it was missed during my lap because it's the only logical reason for all of my symptoms.

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What Koolcatt said about adhesions on the diaphragm sounds feasible. If the diaphragm is irritated you can get pain anywhere up the phrenic nerves which go up the side of the chest and into the neck and shoulders. It can also cause shortness of breath.

Note that there are other things that can cause phrenic nerve pain such as neck and spinal injuries.

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That's very interesting. I'm going to mention shoulder pain to my Dr when I next go back.

I did wander if I had done myself some kind of injury while working with the horses as it would make sence. It just seems very random how the pain comes back while I'm on my period x

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