shoulder pain with limited use of arm

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For the past 14 weeks Ive had constant pain in my shoulder which in turn affected my arm which now has limited movement. x-ray showed some wear & tear to rotator cuff annd some arthritis in the collar bone. My GP gave me a steroid injection in the back of my shoulder which helped in that area. However, the pain in my shoulder joint and down my arm is brutal. I cannot raise my arm to dress without pain neither can I lift it to the side. I'm taking Dihydrocodeine and pregabalin. I have been referred to physio and am now awaiting  an ultrasound scan which is next week. The appointment arrived today but also enclosed was an information sheet for ultrasound led steroid injection into shoulder. I wondered if this is what is planned for that day. I'm hoping that is the case because I cant stand this pain much longer. I dont believe anyone should be in constant pain this day and age. 

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  • Posted

    Exactly this happened to me as I had frozen shoulder for over four years plus Fibromyalgia for over ten years. I then discovered after two steroid injections not working ,still in horrible pain with very limited movement that I had a full tendon tear in my right shoulder so had to have shoulder surgery. I am now 16 months post surgery and in far less pain
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    • Posted

      Thanks for your reply. Glad to know youre in much less pain now.

      Im hoping something will be clarified with the U/S scan and praying they intend to give me an injection into the joint the same day seeing as they sent me the info sheet with the appointment. Anything for some sort of relief. This pain just came on in October and i was taking ibuprofen and all sorts of gels and sprays but realised after two weeks the pain needed attention. I will update when Ive had the scan and hopefully the steroid pain relief. Im having physio at the end of the month but I can barely move my arm for pain,

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  • Posted


    What would you like to know? Sounds like you have something more than will be fixed by a steroid injection.

    Sounds like you have a bone spur under your acromion that needs removing (a procedure called sub-acromial decompression). It's surgery, but very simple and recovery is a few weeks.

    Steroid injections are done as a precursor as it may settle without surgery, but from what you've described, I'd venture you are a surgery case.

    The ultrasound should show if there is a bone spur under your acromion or not. Otherwise, ask for an MRI scan.

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    • Posted

      Hi and thanks for your reply. Ive had an xray which just showed some wear and tear to rotator cuff and some arthritis to collar bone. My GP originally thought it was something to do with calcification?and/or supraspinatus? something like that.  Im now having the U/S and with the appointment was an info sheet re steroid injection and Im querying if that is what I can expect at the appointment? Any sort of relief would be welcome. Im claustrophobic so an MRI is not an option for me as Im also epileptic (controlled) Im presently relying on family to cook and cut my food! help me dress most days, Im getting quite down with it all. Sorry to sound awful, I just cant understand why so many people are being sort of "left" in continuous pain these days.

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    • Posted

      Hi, I had a similar problem.  I fell on a wet floor in 2013 and it was 18 months later that I started having severe pain in my right shoulder, like you.  I had X-rays which showed some wear and tear to the rotator cuff.  I was offered a Ultrasound guided cortizone injection and it was during this procedure I was told I had a 25mm tear in my supraspinatus.  I had two of these injections which was quite effective for a while. 

      The surgeon recommended a course of intensive physio, and that if this didnt work, would be offered a surgery which I have decided against.

      My physiotherapist has set quite a few exercises to stretch and strengthen the other three muscles.

      It does help but I must keep up with the exercises on a daily basis - unfortunately, I do lapse now and again.  I am 74 and a surgery at my age is not recommended by my physiotherapist.

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    • Posted

      Hi, I had a cortisone injection into the back of my shoulder and I had some relief in that area. The pain in my joint and arm has been constant and unbearable hence the referral for an ultrasound and I am sooo hoping a guided cortisone shot is on the menu at the same time, however temporary the relief.

      Like you, Im cautious about surgery being on the wrong side of 60. I do have a physio referral at the end of the month and Im unsure as to what they could do seeing as any movement sends pain ripping through my shoulder. 

      Keep up your gentle exercises, any relief can only be good.

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  • Posted

    Hi Just to update. Had my ultrasound yesterday with some difficulty as I could not move my shoulder or arm too much. The Radiologist however was able to determine there were no major tears.

    He suggests I have Frozen shoulder and is faxing result asap to my GP as he has offered salt water dilation with cortisone & anaesthetic with imaging guidance once he receives GP referral.

    Ive spoken already to my GP and he is hoping to pick up the fax today and will reply immediately with agreement to this procedure. So, I feel a little more hopeful for some relief in sight. 

    I can then look forward to physiotherapy at the end of this month. 

    Looks like I will be referred back to my Cardiologist also as all the stress from the pain has encouraged my angina to join in the fun. I already had a stent 5 yrs ago and have been pretty ok since.

    I will update on theabove procedure once I hear.

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