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Can a sore throat cause shoulder bone pain?

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Practicing since : 2001
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Hello, I am a 48-year-old woman, 70 KG, 154 cm tall. I have not been well for nearly three weeks. It started with a sore throat, followed by nasal congestion and coughing. That was nearly gone, now the sore throat is coming back and for about 5 days I have had sharp pains in both shoulders and collarbones. COuld this be referred pain from the diaphragm? I take ERFA thyroid and have suffered from insomnia and exhaustion with v low ferritin (18) , which is being treated with iron injections, for some time.
Posted Thu, 26 Apr 2012 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Rakhi Tayal 3 hours later

Thanks for writing to us.

Sore throat and nasal congestion are least likely to cause a shoulder and collar bone pains.

The pain you are having may be referred from diaphragm, in case the cough is very severe and continuous. Usually the pain referred from diaphragm involves only the shoulder and not the collar bone. The pain in collar bone may be due repeated stress by neck muscles during coughing.

There can be other reasons also like frozen shoulder considering your age. An orthopaedic surgeon after complete examination can make the diagnosis.

Till then you can follow some simple measures for relief-
1. For cough, take repeated steam inhalations and do gargles with warm saline solution.
2. You can use steroid based sprays after a prescription from your doctor.
3. Take some mild pain killers like acetaminophen or ibuprofen for shoulder pain.
4. Avoid lifting heavy weights
5. Applying hot compresses and local analgesic gel in that area- shoulder and collar bone.

I hope you have found my recommendations both adequate and helpful. Should you have additional questions I am available to address them.

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