Shoulder pain

I get very strong pain in my left shoulder that travels down my left arm I've lost strength as well my muscle has detrated the pain has traveled across my shoulders to right side and sometimes into my right arm the amount of painkillers I'm prescribed only dulls the pain at the moment it's permanent there and gets stronger till it's unbearable I'm wonder does anyone suffering this pain have any idea what can I do too aid pain relief please

17 Replies

  • I had the same thing, using paracetamol, ibrufen and codeine for almost a year. Had a mri on my neck and have a few issues with that. I'm not saying that's the case for you just giving you my case. What has your gp said and have you had a tests? Xx

  • I have had the same thing and it also affected my neck. Extremely painful. What seemed to work are daily stretches, strenghtening, massage, acuapuncture. Also beware of posture if sitting a desk. It can be the culprit of all the pain.

  • Hi Keith69, I do hope things improve for you. This may sound very tame considering what you're going through but whe I'm like that I have a hot bath with a teacupful of Epsom Salts and soak for ten minutes and I feel tons better. It's the only thing I know that gives immediate relief. Why not give it a try, you've nothing to lose. Best wishes

  • Hi Keith,

    I have cervical spondylosis but the pain I have is in my left shoulder and has now travelled to the right. It doesnt go away. Matrifen patches dulled it slightly but nothing else.

    I have just been told about Actipatches which have been advertised on TV apparently (I don't watch TV so I wouldn't know) but last night I ordered a free patch (not totally free as you have to pay £4.95 post and packing) but I'm assured this will work.

    I'm not sure how it will work, just hoping it does. You're the first person I've heard suffers from the same pain.

    I had physio, but exercise aggravated it because spondylosis is bone spurs gradually growing and touching the nerves. Ouch, it even SOUNDS painful.

    I'm being referred to Rheumatology and may find out more there, but in the meantime, I'm giving this Actipatch a go.

    I wish you pain free shoulders very soon.


  • I have the same as you and have used acti-patch. They do work, only thing I found is the area they cover is not enough for the areas of the pain x

  • Hi Keith69, I get shoulder pain due to past injury and it can radiate across and down arms, but you need to know it is from the shoulder not your spine in the neck region to enable the correct treatment. All the above ideas can help, I find heat applied to the neck and shoulder helps, worth a try. Hope you find whats best for you as painkillers have their problems too with long term use. Best Wishes and Good luck in your search for releif.

  • Hi, If it's any help I have shoulder pain which then goes down my right arm. It was diagnosed as a trapped nerve. Painkillers don't really do a great deal, but the consultant said the best thing was to alternate between hot and cold to the shoulder area - find standing under hot shower really helps. Also suggested that stretching exercises to help with pain and to slowly get the body to naturally release it. BUT don't do what I have done - felt really better then overdid it. Take it slowly. Unfortunately it doesn't repair itself overnights. Take care and I hope the information is of use to you.

  • It might be an idea to have a MRI on yr neck as I have a bone spur and bulging disc c4/c5 causing similar symptoms

  • Thanks everyone for your time to reply I've had a MRI now my c7is compressed and bulging out they say that is where my pain is coming from and will get worse but i don't understand why my muscle is reducing down so fast but they will find out hopefully, Thankyou everyone for your reply's hope you find relief for yourselves.

  • Hi Keith

    Muscle wastage is common following spine / nerve issues because for one thing it hurts so you avoid using it and another if the nerve that activates the muscle in question is not functioning as it should (such as through pressure from a bulging disc) it can lead to an inability to activate the muscle which in turn means it doesn't get used.

    I have had that issue with my lower torso following multiple disc problems.


  • Thankyou for that info Ade I hope you get well from your problem with multiple discs it sounds a lot worse than mine hope you recover well and soon

  • Thank you Keith, I only mention my own issues as it demonstrates that I speak from a position of experience! I also understand how painful shoulders can get through having RA (and consequently a knackered shoulder).

    Our own problems are always the most important ones to us...

    I won't frighten / bore you with any more of my own history but one thing I would say is that if you do see a physio and they recommend exercise / stretching or whatever - do it! Seeing a personal trainer and spending a lot of time in the gym has been very beneficial for me and i now, finally understand why you will hear that exercise / yoga / Pilates etc are really, really important. And once you have started having spine problems strengthening the muscles that support it can help to avoid further ones

    Good luck, I hope it resolves with minimal lasting effects.

  • They may recommend physio to help with your muscle wastage. That in itself is supposed to cause more pain. That's where I'm at now for the time being xx

  • Well the physio took a look at my MRI and said they could do nothing at the moment.

    I hope it's helping you out get well soon.xx

  • Hi there Keith96, shoulders have a very complex muscle system and nerve supply. This is because of what the shoulders actually do. Both shoulder girdles one on each side of the spinal chord can cause catastrophic pain in different places, deferred pain. You have a rotator cuff muscles on each side and if this becomes inflamed for some reason it effects movement. Sometimes referred as a frozen shoulder and can take months to heal up. It you are an older person and have osteoarthritis you might need a op to remove some of the boney tissue and free up the rotator cuff muscles. Those muscles have a very hard job to do, they help you twist your body, reach out and catch a ball, allows free movement of your neck and head and are attached to the muscles of breathing. Pain relief medication is not supposed to stop all the pain because pain is there for a reason. Pain and something is not quite right. Its the only way your body can tell you. So the injured part sends a message via the nervous system to the brain saying it needs help to heal itself. The brain then responds by sending back a signal to the nerve endings in the injured part saying Pain. As I have posted before that if you did not feel pain at any one time you would be unconscious. Any pain can be reduced by fooling the brain into sending a different signal such as an itch or a warm feeling. You are describing to me that you want all the pain to go away and because you are thinking that the pain is going to get worse the brain says ok lets give him more pain. It is a vicious circle to get out of. Training the brain is possible because you can change what you are thinking. Look at pain from a different angle, look at the way you can think of something else when you feel the pain getting worse. Don't think it will get to 10 out of 10. Before that happens your brain needs your help to change what you and it are thinking right now.

    If the muscle has started to reduce and get softer than the other, the reason is that the body is not using that part as the other side. Gentle movement is the key to keeping those muscles strong as they should be. Nothing hard, sitting or standing in a comfortable position and tensing the muscle as if you are using a weight. It also helps the muscular system cope with the injury. I can remember when it was the norm for someone who had a bad pain in the back to take to their bed for about 6 weeks doing nothing apart from getting very stiff and extremely bored.

    I just hope I have put a different perspective to the way you are dealing with your particular problem. I must finish with these last words of wisdom. Keith69 I am sorry that I put 96 at the end of your name but there was a reason. You are unique, there is no one in this world who feels your pain, feelings, desires or your illnesses. People might think that they have the same condition as you but each disease, syndrome, signs and symptoms and outcome will be 100% different to yours. Best regards Oldman1952.

  • Thankyou for that info and your apology for the age I do feel from time to time but only 48 yet I will try my best to heed your info to the best of my ability Thankyou very much.

  • I'm also having the pain. I couldn't any remedy. I'm suffering very much.

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