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Sore throat, back pain, shoulder pain. On elavil, gabapentin. What can be done?

Hi, my daughter is a healthy 11 yr old. She is a competetive dancer and dances about 20 plus hours a week. The first week of December she was home with a sore throat and just not feeling well.She started complaining with left side back pain . It escalated fast to her screaming and crying with the pain.We ended up at Vanderbilt E.R. Long story short: She is still suffering with the pain. Shes had blood work and urine tests and xrays. Nothing showing up. Nothing has helped the pain except morephine at the e.r. She is currently taking Elavil 10mg, and just started taking Gabapentin 100 mg and aleve . So far none of this has helped her pain. She is not a complainer or a whiner. She has missed about 4 weeks of school and is currently off her dance team due to this. I m at my wits end with this. She begs me to take her back to the e.r. so she can get some relief. Her pediatrician doesn t think that pain meds will help her.The only explanation my daughter gives of her pain is that it just hurts non stop from the top of her panty line to the top of her left shoulder . It is only straight up and down the left side. I understand the seriousness of pain meds but I can t take much more of watching her suffer. I would love to hear your response. We are just praying for answers. This is my first time doing anything like this, so I appreciate any help we can get. Thanks, Midge
Asked On : Thu, 17 Jan 2013
Answers:  1 Views:  70
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General & Family Physician 's  Response
Dec 2012

Welcome and thanks for posting on HCM

Your daughter is likely suffering from neuralgic type pain given your description. But the cause of this pain needs to be absolutely determined in order to treat the cause and not the symptom. Pain killers will just improve the pain but will not cure the illness. She is presently on gabapentin ( which is an antineuralgic med) and elavil ( which is an antidepressant and also has pain killer effects especially of neuralgic onset).
I will such an MRI of the spine and soft tissues running along the line of pain. This can determine if they are any organic causes ( i.e presence of somatic defects causing the nerves to be paining such as tumor, infection, lesion etc). The pain could be idiopatic or of unknown cause and will need to be managed with pain killers and physiotherapy until the pain subsides and she can go back to her sporting activities.
Just pay a visit to a neurologist or neurosurgeon for further assessment and proper management.

hope this helps and wish your daughter a quick recovery

Dr Nsah
Answered: Fri, 18 Jan 2013
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