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Quit smoking. X-ray normal. Experiencing back pain and shoulder pain. Feeling dizzy. What to do?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2005
Answered : 2585 Questions
Hi doc
24 years,male,
non smoking - quit before four,months
had chest about a month ago did a xray and ct it came back normal.
I have been experiencing back pain below my shoulder blade and most of my mid back region. Yesterday while at work suddenly I experienced pain a inch or two below my left arm pit in the ribs. It has subsided now . But I get pain when I try to get up from bed. Or change sides while sleeping. I also feel slightly dizzy.
Posted Thu, 25 Jul 2013 in Lung and Chest disorders
Answered by Dr. Prasad 36 minutes later

First, congratulations for successfully quitting smoking. You would be an inspiration to many of my patients who find it difficult to quit. Keep that up!!!

Now the chest pain that you describe does not concern me. It looks to be related to muscular strain. The fact that the pain occurs when you turn and you do not have cough/breathing difficulties, many of the serious pathologies related to lung and heart are ruled out.

Dizziness is most likely incidental. If it persists and disturbs your daily activities you can try betahistine tablets for a few days and that should take care of it.

I feel you will be better in the next couple of days. Avoid strenuous physical exercise which can impair the time of recovery. If needed, you can use topical pain balms/cream/spray on the affected areas; I suggest diclofenac sprays to my patient. Your pharmacist will know about this medication. Warm compresses using water bags can provide additional benefits.

I hope you will be fine very soon. Let me know if you need any other assistance.

All the best!!
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Follow-up: Quit smoking. X-ray normal. Experiencing back pain and shoulder pain. Feeling dizzy. What to do? 26 hours later
Hi doc, as per your instructions I have been using diclofenac spray and tablets .
Although the pain under my armpits have subsided a lot. There is still significant pain under my left scapula and left mid back area. The diziness is still present.
I can sometimes feel pain in my neck. What should I do??
Answered by Dr. Prasad 1 hour later

Muscular sprains recovery in 2-3 days time; however it can sometimes remain for a week or two. I do not recommend use of diclofenac tablets for prolonged use; perhaps for 2-3 days is ok.

As the pain is better than yesterday, you seem to be heading in the right direction. Please continue diclofenac sprays over the affected areas twice or three times a day. Apply warm compresses and rest well. If pain remains after a weeks time, you would need to consult an orthopedic for close examination and advice.

If the dizziness is severe and troubling your daily activities, (as suggested earlier) you can try betahistine under the guidance of your local doctor.

Wish you a speedy recovery...

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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