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Diabetic. Developed intense pain in neck and shoulder. Diagnosed with pinched nerve associated to diabetes and arthritis. Guide?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2001
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I have developed a very intense pain rear lower left of my neck, in the area between my neck and shoulder. The pain then radiates from there down my left arm and into my 1st and 2nd fingers. The intensity changes with different positioning of my arm. My fingers are feeling numb. I am a 67 year old male with type 2 diabetes.
I have seen a doctor and been diagnosed with a pinched nerve associated to my diabetes and arthritis. He has prescribed Neproxin.
Would you agree with this diagnosis?
Posted Wed, 26 Jun 2013 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Michelle Gibson James 52 minutes later
HI, thanks for using healthcare magic

The nerve supply to the arm and forearm come from what is known as the brachial plexus.
The brachial plexus is a collection of nerves that form from nerve roots that emerge from the lower cervical ribs in the neck and the first thoracic rib.These nerves proceed through the neck , then the axilla and into the arm.

They are responsible for movement and sensation in the arms and forearms.

Arthritis in the neck or some aspects of the shoulder can possibly compress these nerves as they run through either the neck or the axilla.
The nerves supply different fingers so the fact that it is affecting the 1st and 2nd fingers implies that it is related to these particular nerves.

Diabetes can cause neuropathy if the blood sugar is not controlled, not likely to occur in person where there is adequate control. It is actually one of the most common causes of neuropathy- abnormal pain and sensations.

The medication that you were given is anti inflammatory pain killer and should help.
If it does not there are medications that are used specifically for neuralgia such as amitrptyline, gabapentin or tegretol.
These are commonly used for diabetic neuropathy.

I hope this helps, feel free to ask any other questions
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Diabetic. Developed intense pain in neck and shoulder. Diagnosed with pinched nerve associated to diabetes and arthritis. Guide? 30 minutes later
In addition to the medication that I am taking, is there some form off therapy that would help?
Answered by Dr. Michelle Gibson James 34 minutes later

Physiotherapy may help. It may provide you with exercises that would relieve the stress placed on the nerve .
Your doctor may be able to suggest a good therapist in your area

Please feel free to ask any additional questions
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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