Arm pain, been dealing with this for a little over a year. please help.

by Josh
(Hickory, NC USA)

Arm pain

I have been experiencing pain in the front of my shoulder, and the rear of my shoulder. Also sometimes, i'll have pain in the upper front of my shoulder and it feels like maybe it's in the joint area, not sure though.

But it's been happening in both at different times. Never hurt at the same time. Sometimes one shoulder won't even hurt throughout the day.

I've also had middle bicep pain. Not upper, not lower, in the middle. that also can be in both. And i've had middle/upper tricep pain, but that's pretty rare.

I also, nearly almost everyday have elbow pain. In the olecranon area. Like sometimes where maybe the tricep inserts, sometimes on the tip of the olecranon, sometimes on the inner side of the olecranon, and sometimes about a centimeter down the olecranon along the ulna bone.
I've had this pain in both, but it's most of the time in my left.

That's pretty generalised, Josh. Frankly it could be quite a lot of things.

I'd start by looking to see if I could reproduce the pain, firstly by range of motion of the shoulder and elbow, and then the neck.

Then I'd do resisted isometric testing of the muscles to see if it's a muscular problem.

A good thorough examination of your neck is important, because the source of arm pain quite often lies in the cervical spine, the thoracic outlet or the first rib.

The Upper limb tension test will tell if it's a pinched nerve.

I'm afraid there's no short cut. A good thorough examination is what is needed. Start looking for a chiropractor who is interested in sports injuries, perhaps one with a FICS qualification. Call your state chiropractic association.

I hope this has contributed.

I also have occasional wrist pain, like where the wrist inserts into my hand, that's the right wrist.

And i have some occasional knee pain, most of the time in right, but can be in left.

My joints get stiff if i've left them in a position for about 30 mins without moving. and they pop pretty loud, (elbows mostly, shoulders somewhat).

i have not worked out since January, but back from about end november to end december, i was doing starting strength, and about the time the shoulder pain started coming on, i was doing pretty heavy lifts, but nothing i couldn't ever complete 5 reps of. The elbow pain had been bothering me since february of last year when i done some heavy barbell curls. It bothered me off and on afterwards, and eventually i got tennis elbow, but i haven't had that in forever.

I have seen two docs, orthopiedic and family doctor, had the right wrist x-rayed over the summer when it was bothering me, x-ray showed nothing, i've been taking Animal Flex and Super Cissus which just seems to manage the symptoms to minor and moderate. I've been physically tested by docs, and mostly i have no evidence signs. When i seen my family doc, he blood tested me like 5 times, and made the comment that i had no signs of an auto immune disease setting in, that was over the summer when the x-ray took place. I've been in therapy in march, focussed on shoulders, and it slightly helped, but didn't cure it.

I'm just in terrible shape. I want to workout, but why workout if something hurts you know?
If you have any advice, please pass it along.

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Interesting challenges of the day

1. Mr S is a 76 year old man with neck pain of some 9 months duration. Luckily, most of the discomfort is upper cervical which is only rarely arthritic; his lower cervical spine is a degenerative mess that I have left alone. After seven treatments his pain and stiffness is 50 percent better, and he is happy in the circumstances. He can sleep through the night now and that makes a huge difference.

2. Mr P is 32 year old man with very severe lower back pain radiating to the big toe which is 30 percent numb. He had an episode three weeks ago, took anti-inflammatories and was soon better as is typical of the medial disc herniation. But before it healed, after a trivia it came roaring back, much worse. The characteristic crossed sign was evident; sitting in a chair, straightening the right leg provoked severe left back pain and tingling in the leg. He is doing well.

3. Severe lower back pain is scary; just ask Mrs P. Just watching her get out of the car I she was in trouble; she had a slipped disc at L4 making her lean towards the opposite side; luckily she had no pain in the leg. Despite family pressure that this was far too severe for a chiropractor, she persevered. Within five days she was standing upright, and after two weeks almost pain-free. 

Despite a hectic job, she wisely took my advice and stayed home for what I call exercising bed rest.

4. Mr S has had lower back, groin and back of thigh and calf pain for fourth months.

He has a pincer deformity in the hip causing the stabs in the groin, and a degenerative facet causing the sciatica. Both are responding well to chiropractic and he is well pleased; sixty-five percent better after three treatments.

5. Mr T is a wise man; he has taken a warning TIA seriously and has lost 15 pounds, and has at least as much again to lose. A change to a low starch diet and half hour daily stroll has made the difference; but the walking is making his foot and back miserable. The expensive orthotic is hopeless; luckily his hips and back are fine, but he needs a simple heel lift; he has a short leg.

6. I too have had serious lower back issues, luckily fixed by my own chiropractor; so I too have to do my exercises, take care when lifting supers full of honey, gardening and using the chainsaw. Regaining the function of your spine is just as important as the pain.

7. My own granddaughter, only 7 is hypermobile giving her pelvic, knee and ankle issues. X-rays show a mildly dysplastic hip. Years ago we would have called it growing pains. She too regularly needs chiropractic care and luckily responds well. Increased range of motion is more difficult than too stiff in my opinion. Our care is for kids too.

8. This 65-year old lady is a serious gardener; every day she is bending, lifting and digging for 2 to 3 hours a day. It regularly catches her in the sacroiliac joint, so she has a treatment once a month that sorts it out. She does her lower back exercises faithfully.

9. This 88-year old lady is an inspiration; every day she is busy in the community. With a nasty scoliosis she manages very well with a chiropractic adjustment every six weeks and exercises faithfully done. 

10. Mr X is a 71-year old retired man who wants to continue with maintenance care every six to eight weeks; he had suffered from two years of lower back pain when he first came a few months ago. He has no discomfort now after 8 chiropractic treatments, but is aware that danger lurks.

11. Mrs C has been having severe headaches, and taking a lot of analgesics. It is a non-complicated upper cervical facet syndrome, and she is doing well.

12. Mr D is a 38-year old year man with chronic shoulder pain after a rotator cuff tear playing cricket. It responded well to treatment, but he knows he must do his exercises every day; for two years he could not sleep on that shoulder.

13. Mr D, a 71-year old man, has a severe ache in the shoulder and midback since working above his head. Trapped nerve tests are negative but he has advanced degenerative joints of Luschka; after just two treatments he is 50 percent better. Can we reach 90?

And so the day goes; chiropractors should not be treating the elderly most medical sites state but that is so much bunkum.

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