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Undiagnosed neck and shoulder pain, plz help!

ajs87aajs87 Posts: 2
edited 01/21/2015 - 1:11 PM in Neck Pain: Cervical
Hi! Im a healthy 27 year old female, and since October I have had terrible pain in my neck, shoulder on the right side. When this whole ordeal started I also had numbness in my last two digits in my right hand. From what I can remember this injury either happened after lifting a box while in the process of moving or during work (I am a labor and delivery nurse). I do recall having a sticking sensation in my shoulder the first few days after the initial onset of the pain.
At first the physician thought it was just a muscle strain and put me on muscle relaxants and told me to come back a week later. After the week went by and there was not change i went back to the doctor who now thought that I had a pinched nerve and sent me for an EMG as well as recommended that I start seeing a physiotherapist which I did. The EMG came back negative but the neurologist said he thought that there was a pinched nerve somewhere. the neurologist also switched me to Lyrica at that time which i have been taking since and I am now on 150mg twice daily.
I have been going to a physiotherapist twice a week since the end of October and still have terrible pain in my neck and shoulder. I have had a cervical MRI which came back negative as well as a shoulder x-ray which showed nothing. I am awaiting a shoulder MRI which I will have in Feb.
I saw an Orthopedic surgeon yesterday and he told me in his medical opinion that it is not a shoulder problem and that I should disregard anything that may show on the MRI. He also recommended I go to nuclear medicine to get a bone scan. He also said that I may never find the cause of my pain and that I should just learn to live with it.
Does anybody have any recommendations as to what it could be or what I could do as all the doctors I have seen don't seen to have any answers.


  • I would hold out for the shoulder mri'. I don't like the comment your doctor said "live with it" that's very un-professional. Does the lyrica help??? For temporary drug free relief I use a heating pad, get massages and soak in my hot tub. Good luck :)
    2005-ACDF with Corpectomy at C3-C-5.
    2006-L4-L5 diskectomy.
    2009-Cervical laminectomy at C3.
    Steroid injections series x 4.
  • the thing is I'm not sure its the lyrica thats working as I'm on a large dose of dilaudid as well. I try heating pads they work while they are on but when I remove them the pain returns. wish I had a hot tub to try lol. I have also had a cortisone injection in my shoulder which only made the pain 100% worse and I couldn't move for three days.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,859
    If it is in the shoulder, the X-Ray would be the best way to identify IF it was arthritis in nature. That would be one of the reasons for doing a bone scan. It can identify the masses in joints which generally indicate arthritis.

    The MRI of the shoulder might show some other tears along the tendons and such.

    Never accept the answer that you just have to live with it... Yes, there might be situations where there is no apparent problem, nothing aggressive to treat, so conservative treatments are the best option. You may have pain, but there should always be

    When I had problems with my cervical area, one of the first symptoms was in my fingers. Numbness, tingling and loss of strength. That always showed up as a result of a herniation in on of the cervical discs. I have had C4/C5/C6/C7 fused and plated together.
    That was back in 1994 and 2000, and I still have not had any neck issues.
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
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