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does anyone have pain radiating down both arms?

My daughter is 17 and I have been trying to get her an mri, but so far only had x rays that don't show anything, so we don't know exactly whats wrong. She wasn't in an accident, literally woke up one day with pain in her arm, and then neck pain, for months that would come and go, and for the past 6 months she has had pain in both her arms and into her fingers that comes and goes. Her doctors haven't ordered her an mri because they believe its muscular, but the way she describes it, it sounds like radiculopathy from her neck. She also is now having back problems and sciatica going down both legs. I'm really worried and so is she because its in both arms when usually neck problems only seem to affect one side, and she is so young to be having these kinds of pain. Any help is appreciated


  • At first I started to ask if she has been checked for carpal tunnel, but both arms at once seems different. That is your child. I would take her back to the doctor and demand an MRI or better yet, go to ER you will get one then.
    Connie daniel
  • I have taken her to the er, yesterday i did because her sciatica moved to the left leg when it used to only be on one side, and i also told them about her neck pain and how it goes into both arms, and still no mri. They gave her an x ray, which we have already done before, and it came back with nothing wrong. She has another appointment with her doctor soon but there is no.guarantee that her insurance will accept the mri request. They denied it before.  
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  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,385
    I may have missed it, but I'm not sure how long your daughter has been suffering....?
    You may be interested in reading****Chronic Pain Step by Step****.....and you can find by using search, upper right on page.

    Search is also useful for any of your concerns. You may be led to current or older discussions.
    You may be led to medical side.
    The main site has all the formal medical articles and videos for you to research on.

    Much of what you read and see may suggest or remind you of things to mention to doctor.

    I am having difficult time understanding why insurance will not cover MRI...or do you mean they will not cover it at this time?
    Do they want more conservative measures taken first?

    My PCP tried to care for my pain about two years before referring me to pain management doctor.
    That was best thing for me!
    PM doctor did variety of tests not mentioned to me previously.
    The EMG was very revealing to me and PM doctor..and as you mentioned...re radiculopathy.

    On right side of page is FAQs. Under ...Medical Information....there are helpful readings in talking with doctor.
    Some of them are titled for pain management, surgeon...but in reading all of them, I found much information to be overlapping and useful in speaking to any of my doctors.

    It is not easy to see our  children suffer. It is not easy to stay strong as advocate for our child, but when there is suffering, there is no choice.
    I continued to tell my story repeatedly until someone was able to help me. For me that was pain management.
    Prior to PM, I spent more than a few times in the ER trying to get relief from pain.

    As you have already, please continue to report any change or worsening of symptoms...additional symptoms.
    Chronic pain can often times be accompanied by depression and sleep disorders.
    They are symptoms that can be treated and doctor should know about.
    My PM doctor did a sleep study on me as my pain caused me to be awake for days and sleep deprivation was crazy making experience.

    Have you thought of getting a second opinion?
    Honorary Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  •  She really needs an MRI. I have pain down both arms, neck pain, and headaches which is worse on the left. It is important your daughter gets diagnosed soon because it sounds like there is nerve compression. I only speak from my experience with these issues. It is possible to have leg pain stemming from a cervical spine problem. A spine specialist would be a good idea. 
    Ol' Spiney..Micro-D L4-L5, TLIF L4-S1 -post op central HNP L4-S1,stenosis, retrolisthesis, EF, facet arthropathy, lumbar& cervical DDD. FBSS- Medtronic pain pump & SCS
  • Sorry I can't seem to figure out how to reply directly to someone else's comment lol, but I have taken to her 2 doctors regarding her neck and arm pain and they really thought nothing of it. One doctor ordered an mri, but the insurance denied it, they even denied a cream for her acne a couple years ago, I don't really know why. Now that she has gotten an x ray she is more likely to be accepted for an mri, but it will still take a number of weeks. She has an appointment soon, hopefully he will order an mri. It just blows my mind that this is taking so long to have a doctor take us seriously, they think because she is young she can't possibly be in any pain. Thank you for the replies. 
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  • First and foremost as parent I am sorry for the pain your daughter is in having had to deal with a similar situation. Be a strong advocate for her. An MRI should reveal any cervical issues. 

    I have had pain down both arms beginning from back of shoulder area. As mentioned previously it was diagnosed as radiculpathy both the exact cause has been undiagnosed. I have C3-4 stenosis which the neurosurgeon has offered surgery for. Pain management doctor says it could be c6-7 but also ulnar nerve compression (nerve that runs down from neck into arms). I have had two MRIs and an xray with another MRI to be scheduled in order for them to find origin of pain. I will be having an epidural as well which will be used as a diagnostic tool as well. So I am in the same boat as drs try to figure what is going on.


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