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Having on and off swelling and pain in shoulder and hands. On antibiotic. Concerned

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Orthopaedic Surgeon
Practicing since : 1994
Answered : 10371 Questions
I have had a swollen shoulder off and on for about 3 weeks. I think it my lymh nodes by my collar bone. On the side as my shoulder my breast also aches me. They really flare up when I drink any alcohol. These symtoms started two weeks after my hand mysteriously swelled up. The hospital gave me antibotics for the hand and I considering going back for the shoulder and breast.
Posted Fri, 27 Jul 2012 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 3 hours later
Thanks for posting your query.
A swelling in the hand and shoulder can cause supraclavicular lymph node swelling. Such swellings are due to local infections and once the infection is controlled, the lymph node swelling subsides.
The flaring up of pain after drinking alcohol is suggestive of a pain due to neural cause. Such symptoms are usually relieved on stopping alcohol and taking vitamin B 12 supplements.
These neural pains are a challenging thing to treat as careful examination is needed to ascertain the level of nerve involvement. You can take some anti-inflammatory pain killer like acetaminophen till you consult your neurophysician.
I hope this answers your query.
In case you have additional questions or doubts, you can forward them to me, and I shall be glad to help you out.
Please accept my answer in case you do not have further queries.
Wishing you good health.
Dr. Praveen Tayal.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Having on and off swelling and pain in shoulder and hands. On antibiotic. Concerned 13 minutes later
I have taken 3 rounds of antibotics. I use a hot water bottle during the day to help with the pain and swelling. I have taken up to 800 mg of ibuprofen and still when I wake up the swelling in my shoulder is still there. I can't even move my arm some mornings. My hand has been better for weeks. Could this be something serious such as lymphoma or does this seem normal following the hand infection (which is a mystery because I never cut it or anything). Even if it (shoulder/collar swelling) goes away for a couple of days it comes back.
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 11 minutes later
Thanks for writing again.
Your symptoms are more likely to be due to an inflammatory cause. An MRI scan of shoulder will help in detecting the pathology. Lymphoma is not likely.
Hope my answer is helpful.
Do accept my answer in case there are no further queries.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Having on and off swelling and pain in shoulder and hands. On antibiotic. Concerned 9 minutes later
Thanks for the advice. I did want to mention that when the lymph node began swelling, my hand was completely healed. I just don't know what it causing the current swelling since there are no other signs of infection. So I have one aching breast and a swollen lymph node in the collar area. Is it possible to have an infection still without any other symtoms other than a very painful shoulder/
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 5 hours later
Lymph node swellings are often persistent even after the infection has subsided or may be due to a minor viral infection. A detailed examination and investigations are needed to know the cause.
You also need to self examine the breast for the presence of any lumps in the area.
Take care.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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