How Much Is The Shoulder Stiffness Due to Pred. F... - PMRGCAuk


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How Much Is The Shoulder Stiffness Due to Pred. Fat Redistribution?


I feel I have a yoke across my shoulder blades & grinding & crunching sensations at the back of my neck. Burning sometimes too. Minimal stuff compared to real pain but it does affect my judgement on how the tapering is going. Have I hit the buffers again at 15mg? Is this PMR on the way or just typical of GCA. How's it for yourselves? ATB.

16 Replies


That's the Million Dollar question

I have just had a few days when had neck pain and headache GP said try pain meds which I thought on your bike but tried them took two days but pain went .

I have arthritis in my neck and it does grind and crunch sometimes when I put my head back their is more of a lump like feeling than pre pred .

Just wondering if you have a bit of Arthritis and shoulder pain and burning could be caused by tension .

I know when I really think about it I realize how tense I am sometimes

Hollyseden in reply to Rose54

You have exactly described how my neck feels re grinding, crunching and lump like feeling at back of neck when I tilt head back. Had it for ages but comes and goes. So that's arthritis then? Learn something new every day 🤯😊

Rose54 in reply to Hollyseden

I would ask for X Ray to make certain I had some physio and try to do the exercises when I remember .

Tilt head back 10 times forward 10 turn head to side for ten and other side for ten,

Then held to one side looking forward and other side the same .

Also use wheat bag around neck

Hidden in reply to Rose54

Thanks. Rose54. Ah! Tension. Feel it's a human smart state! Arthritis! Now that seems Wooly world at the moment in medical science. Hope you ok yourself.

Sorry to hear you are experiencing this.That sounds almost exactly the first symptoms I had when my PMR began. It progressed to extremely limited mobility in my shoulders, and them the hips started... I lost all of it when I first started on Pre but my Rheumy insisted I taper more quickly ( I was doing quite well on a DSNS routine and had got to 12.5 successfully for the first time) but yesterday (the fifth day of reducing to 11.25, I have all the pain across the shoulders, the crunching and clunking of my muscles and experience tells me it isn’t going to get better so I I’ve gone back up on the Pred for a few days and will try doing a DSNS again to reduce the Pred, whatever my Rheumy thinks.

Now I’m not sure whether it’s steroid reduction flare or the actual PMR not being kept down and I don’t have GCA so can’t advise there. But it’s not right and experience tells me that just because you don’t classify it as real pain now doesnt mean it won’t progress or regress (depending how you look at it). I have OA, it not in my neck and this pain is different.

Sounds like you’ve been at 15mg before. Did you have problems then?

Hidden in reply to peace_lover

Yes. I've tapered 4 times from 20 to15. 20 seems to knock it out. 17.5 ok. 15 after a few weeks seems to build up! Must apply the DSNS taper from now on. Could be something else of course! Thank you.


I think I had that sort of feeling just with PMR - long before pred. Mine was due to the tight muscles due to myofascial pain syndrome - when that is bad, they come back. I get massage and manual mobilisation for that and the targetted treatment means that I need less pred for the PMR.

Hi, I can identify with that. My shoulders got very tight and sore particularly after a reduction in Pred. I recently started a Pilates class which is specifically targeted at people in recovery from illness or injury. It’s gentle but really helps stretch you out. There’s one exercise that I have found very helpful. It is done with a pole (a broom handle would do). Put it across your shoulders behind your head with your hands as close to each end of the pole as possible. Then circle it around your head in front and behind. Does that make sense? It’s a gentle but very thorough stretch and it has increased my mobility immensely, the pain is also much reduced. It might be of help to you.

If I can find a video, I’ll post the link.


Hollyseden in reply to GerriMc

My eyes water at the thought of that exercise. Makes me realise how knackered my shoulders are 😑

DorsetLadyPMRGCAuk volunteer in reply to Hollyseden

With you there. When I go to Pilates and do shoulder exercise my left one creaks and grinds like a broken winded horse ( as the saying goes down here in Dorset!)

I’m always expecting every one else in the class to stop and look, but they don’t so I guess it’s not that bad!

Hidden in reply to GerriMc

Nearly took my head off on that one Gerri. Thank you. I 'll give it a go tomorrow.

GerriMc in reply to Hidden

😱 Maybe work up to it slowly. Fingertips on shoulders and circle your elbows for a bit until things loosen up.

Maybe an X- Ray is in order. I’ve got Cervical Spondylosis and those audible symptoms are familiar. As we lower our Prednisalone dose old symptoms pop up and say “ remember me?”.

God it’s no fun is it?

Hidden in reply to SheffieldJane

Jane. Sure we do our best. Diagnosis! Does that help? Dunno! It's what they can do to help? Medical branding maybe rules the day!

I think a return of PMR symptoms from tapering.

Shoulder pain was one of my major pain areas on diagnosis.

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