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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Have shoulder, arm and elbow pain. Severe weakness, unable to stretch hand. What could this be?

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Dr. Saurabh Gupta

Orthopaedic Surgeon, Joint Replacement

Practicing since :2004

Answered : 5930 Questions

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Posted on Fri, 6 Dec 2013 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Question: Right shoulder, arm and elbow pain. Severe weekmess, umable to reach behind or up!!! What could this be? Have tried the round arm brace worn just below elbow and has on worsened, forearm outside is swollen and big knot on elbow!!
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Answered by Dr. Saurabh Gupta 2 hours later
Brief Answer: Compression of nerve in cervical [neck area] spine Detailed Answer: Hello, Thanks for your query. According to your symptoms it looks like there is compression of nerve in cervical [neck area] spine due to degenerative disc disease. This leads pain, weakness and loss of strength in right upper limb. An MRI scan of the cervical spine will help in establishing the proper diagnosis. I suggest you not make any delay in approaching a doctor. The treatment for your problem will depend on the condition diagnosed. Generally, with early diagnosis and early treatment, one can expect favourable outcome after treatment. Temporarily, please follow the below mentioned measures to get some symptomatic relief - - avoid any movements that produces pain - do not use bulky pillow underneath your head while sleeping as this position will produce more compression of the nerves - Use a Soft collar which allow the muscles of the neck to rest and limit neck motion. This can help decrease pinching of nerve roots with movement. Soft collars should only be worn for short periods of time, because long-term wear can decrease the strength of neck muscles. Round arm brace is not required in your case. - Analgesic (diclofenac & lornoxicam) and muscle relaxant (thiocolchicoside) combination medicines will provide symptomatic relief from pain & muscle spasm. Neurotropic vitamins like METHYLCOBALAMINE (activated Vit B12) or PREGABALIN will help in alleviating the neuropathic pain. I suggest you to consult an orthopaedic surgeon with good reputation, for a detailed clinical evaluation, diagnosis of your condition and for further management. I do hope that you have found something helpful and I will be glad to answer any further query. Regards.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Follow up: Dr. Saurabh Gupta 20 hours later
I have had a cervical fusion. I also know I indeed have 3 bulges at the cervical. However, the pain all of the sudden in the top of my shoulder, unable to move arm up or back, and the swelling in my elbow and forearm has me thinking after a fall I could have rotator cuff issues??? Could you possibly advise your opinion?? Sincere regards and thanks!!!
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Answered by Dr. Saurabh Gupta 14 hours later
Brief Answer: Could be due to rotator cuff tear or tendonitis. Detailed Answer: Hi, Pain in shoulder, weakness and unable to move arm up or back, could be due to rotator cuff tear or tendonitis. I suggest you to go for MRI after consulting your orthopaedician. MRI may show swelling or a tear in the rotator cuff. Hope this helps you. Take care.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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