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A Question For Those With Previous Shoulder Problems #46751 08/24/06 01:54 PM
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jennyintexas Offline OP
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For the last month my shoulder has been hurting more and more. Yesterday the pain got so bad, at times, I was unable to lift my arm more than a few inches. It is most painful where the head of the humerus meets my clavicle and shoulder blade. Right in the joint!! If I put any pressure on it at all it hurts. It gets worse if I don't relieve the pressure (I can';t sleep on my left side).

So what do you guys think. Joint? Ligament? Tendons? Should I call my rheumy about this or make an appointment with an orthopedist?


No I am not a doctor, I only play one on the internet. Seriously, I'm only as reliable as your next door neighbor. My views are not necessarily the views of SAA or its' members.
Re: A Question For Those With Previous Shoulder Problems #46752 08/24/06 02:37 PM
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Ryan's mom Offline
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I am not certain that my should problem was all AS, but it was definitely arthritis. My problems just came on instantly. Lots of pain ... no sleeping in bed ... if I laid on my back, my shoulder would roll back causing pain; if I laid on my left side (right shoulder was the problem) and my shoulder rolled forward, it caused a lot of pain. I slept in a recliner for most of 18-20 months. I had shot after shot after shot ... finally the doctor (orthopedist specializing in shoulders, arms, hands) said there was no option but surgery. He removed lots of junk from around the joint (arthritis he said) and took part of the collar bone. It was no fun and a reasonably slow recuperation, but well worth it. I've since had my thumb joint replaced in my left hand (same doc). That was arthritis as well ... virtually no joint left at all. Best of luck to you ... I do think I'd recommend an orthopedist as opposed to your rheumy.

Re: A Question For Those With Previous Shoulder Problems #46753 08/24/06 02:58 PM
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Anonymous
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Hi Jenny,

AS can and does often affect the shoulder area. For reference, you can click on the diagram at the top of this page:

Complications - Inflammation diagram

Regards,

Chris

Re: A Question For Those With Previous Shoulder Problems #46754 08/24/06 03:04 PM
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LadyofSteele Offline
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My shoulder seems to finally be giving me relief. It started about two, two and a half years ago. (I remember the day it started, I was having an MRI and it was hurting so bad, I could barely lie still for the MRI, not that I can ever lie still for one of them anyways, Got off subject there)

Anywho, I found ONE position I could sleep on. That was on that shoulder side, with my arm completely stretch out. If I bent it at the elbow during sleep, I was awake within minutes. The pain was so wierd. To this day, I still have trouble pinpointing it. It hurts the worst in the front, around that tendon. I had several injections by the orthopedic and they usually only lasted a few weeks. I woke at 3 am one morning during college and was in so much pain that I called home after two hours of thinking it would go away (I tried everything to make it stop hurting, but it wasn't working). That was the worst pain ever. I couldn't lift it but a few inches from my side and when I did lift it, it felt like there was a softball in the back of my shoulder.

I ended up in the orthopedic's office that morning (my mom works for one, so that was life saver!) and went for x-rays and MRI. MRI showed a large amount of fluid in and around the joint, and a SMALL tear in the rotator cuff. Doc injected the shoulder AGAIN and forbid me from using it for three days. I felt like an idiot walking around campus with my arm in a sling because I had tendonitis/bursitis. Good thing I had my hubby.

I wish I could say that was the last time I had problems with it, but for the last two years or so, it's just been an alternating cycle with my shoulders. After that injection, the opposite one started giving me problems, though not as severe as the other one. They've slacked off the last 6 months though.

I'm sorry I'm so long winded! I agree with Ryan's mom about seeing an Orthopedic. Alot of times they help you with specific joint pain more than your rhuemy can and sometimes, they're alot easier to get an appointment with.


Don't take life too seriously-No one gets out alive!
Re: A Question For Those With Previous Shoulder Problems #46755 08/24/06 03:05 PM
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LadyofSteele Offline
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My shoulder seems to finally be giving me relief. It started about two, two and a half years ago. (I remember the day it started, I was having an MRI and it was hurting so bad, I could barely lie still for the MRI, not that I can ever lie still for one of them anyways, Got off subject there)

Anywho, I found ONE position I could sleep on. That was on that shoulder side, with my arm completely stretch out. If I bent it at the elbow during sleep, I was awake within minutes. The pain was so wierd. To this day, I still have trouble pinpointing it. It hurts the worst in the front, around that tendon. I had several injections by the orthopedic and they usually only lasted a few weeks. I woke at 3 am one morning during college and was in so much pain that I called home after two hours of thinking it would go away (I tried everything to make it stop hurting, but it wasn't working). That was the worst pain ever. I couldn't lift it but a few inches from my side and when I did lift it, it felt like there was a softball in the back of my shoulder.

I ended up in the orthopedic's office that morning (my mom works for one, so that was life saver!) and went for x-rays and MRI. MRI showed a large amount of fluid in and around the joint, and a SMALL tear in the rotator cuff. Doc injected the shoulder AGAIN and forbid me from using it for three days. I felt like an idiot walking around campus with my arm in a sling because I had tendonitis/bursitis. Good thing I had my hubby.

I wish I could say that was the last time I had problems with it, but for the last two years or so, it's just been an alternating cycle with my shoulders. After that injection, the opposite one started giving me problems, though not as severe as the other one. They've slacked off the last 6 months though.

I'm sorry I'm so long winded! I agree with Ryan's mom about seeing an Orthopedic. Alot of times they help you with specific joint pain more than your rhuemy can and sometimes, they're alot easier to get an appointment with.


Don't take life too seriously-No one gets out alive!
Re: A Question For Those With Previous Shoulder Problems #46756 08/24/06 03:20 PM
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Yup, if it's that painful and you stop using it it may become "frozen".

I had capsulitis one time and that was THE most painful thing I had. I could not move my shoulder without pain. I did however move it and prevented further problems like frozen shoulder. With PT the capsulitis wa resolved.

Seeing a doctor is the best advice, either an Ortho or your Rhumy, they can both order the initial tests and/or PT and give steroid shots. (My rhumy was better at the steroid shots).

I did have surgery on my shoulder after a car accident, I have a partial tear in the rotator cuff. My ortho did not repair the tear, but cleaned up my shoulder and shaved the acromium, (the bone that comes over the top of the shoulder) as mine was causing impingement.

When my other shoulder started causing pain, I opted for conservative. I had x-rays to make sure there was no problem then had deep tissue massage from PT. It worked.



As you slide down the bannister of life...May the splinters never point the wrong way.
Re: A Question For Those With Previous Shoulder Problems #46757 08/24/06 03:38 PM
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Ive had shoulder pain. Awhile ago it was BAD. Got a cortizone shot and it helped alot! Its been bothering me again the last couple weeks. I have some physical therapy excercises that help. I just assume its one of those things that go with me and whatever I have.
Hugs,
Leme


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Re: A Question For Those With Previous Shoulder Problems #46758 08/24/06 04:15 PM
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janice Offline
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Hi Jennyintexas,I have an "impinged shoulder" boy does it hurt !but elf is right if it becomes frozen you will go thro hell with the physio,I'm sure my physio made mine worse!.This has been going on 2yrs so I think it needs an m.r.i.,a cortisone shot brings great relief albeit temporary,I think you should at least have an ultrasound to make sure there is no tear before a physio gets hold of it.I found before I had the shot that, ice helped,rubbing arthritis cream,and hanging it down by your side and gently swinging it,just to keep it mobile,don't do anything that makes it more painful eek These are only things that helped me ,make sure you see a doctor!love,Jan. smile

Re: A Question For Those With Previous Shoulder Problems #46759 08/24/06 07:55 PM
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Rob H Offline
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My left shoulder is one of the worst places for me whenever I 'flare'... The pain is very much like you described it, can hardly use my left arm at all without extreme pain. The only thing that helped me was trigger point injections into the shoulder joint itself. The shots themselves hurt like hell, but after a day or two I felt quite a bit better. X-rays showed a little bit of 'bone-spurring' in the shoulder joint which my rheumy said was most likely the cause of the initial pain - inflammation caused the rest. Plus she said the nerves in my shoulder were just 'raw' from the pain, which just excacerbated the issue. I hope this helps!

Rob



Always remember, E=mc2 is a Localized phenomenon. Oh, and never forget where your towel is.
Re: A Question For Those With Previous Shoulder Problems #46760 08/24/06 07:59 PM
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Sara S-C Offline
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Hi Jenny!
My shoulder pain (and shoulder related problems which wound up yanking the joint right out of the darn socket!) turned out to be a problem emanating from my cervical spine, not my shoulder. My advice - Call your Rheumy and Get it checked! With this stuff it's never straightforward. (By the way, my shoulder improved 100% and I now have full range of motion after LOTS and LOTS of Physical Therapy although my cervical spine is still a mess.)
Good Luck!
Sara S-C

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