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What causes right-sided pain in chest and dull ache in right shoulder?

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Posted on Fri, 29 May 2015
Question: I fell asleep on the couch and woke up with pain in the right side of my chest. It felt more like I'd swallowed an air bubble, but now there's a dull ache running down my right arm and dull pain in my right shoulder. I work with heavy equipment so that could be the cause of the pain in my arm/shoulder.
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Answered by Dr. T Chandrakant (1 hour later)
Brief Answer:
Yes, it may be a contributory factor.

Detailed Answer:
Hi.
Thanks for your query and an elucidate history.
Read and understood your Medical history about low blood sugar levels, heartburn at 11, obesity which you connect to the family; Known allergies and Current Medications of Bayer Aspirin and Aleve for serious cramps and headaches.

To recapitulate the present problem: Female/22 - works with heavy equipment - slept on couch - woke up with pain in right chest like swallowed an air bubble - now dull ache running down the right arm and right shoulder - Wants to know whether working with heavy equipment caused this.

First of all I would request you to never take Aspirin since you had a history of damaged esophagus in the past.

Secondly, coming back to your question of pain:
Yes, working with heavy equipment can be the reason for such pains which develop on odd-sleeping stretching or contracting the already ailing muscles of the neck. These go into spasm and can cause pain like radiculopathy originating from the spine but felt in the arm, shoulder and chest.

I would suggest you the following:
- First of all go for a clinical evaluation by a Doctor and get an ECG / EKG of the heart although the pain is right sided.; get an X-ray of the neck in the lateral and AP position to see for the cervical spine changes (not expected much as you are just 22 years old)
- Always take a PPI like Omeprazole or Pantoprazole whenever you are taking any medicines.
- You may need a Rubrafacient liniment to be applied to the neck to give warmth and relaxation to the muscles and may be sufficient in some cases.
- Anti-inflammatory medicines with painkiller properties and still better in your case the painkillers to reduce the pain and spasms.
- A doctor can help you the most, if he does a clinical evaluation, actual examination and investigations if needed, and also you get a valid prescription as most of the medicines need prescription.

May I please know the exact nature of the work with heavy equipment you are doing? Any vibratory effects too?

I hope this answer helps you with some precautions that you must take, for proper diagnosis and management.

Please feel free to ask relevant queries if you need to or if you feel that there is a gap-of-communication.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Prasad
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Answered by
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Dr. T Chandrakant

General Surgeon

Practicing since :1984

Answered : 19459 Questions

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What causes right-sided pain in chest and dull ache in right shoulder?

Brief Answer: Yes, it may be a contributory factor. Detailed Answer: Hi. Thanks for your query and an elucidate history. Read and understood your Medical history about low blood sugar levels, heartburn at 11, obesity which you connect to the family; Known allergies and Current Medications of Bayer Aspirin and Aleve for serious cramps and headaches. To recapitulate the present problem: Female/22 - works with heavy equipment - slept on couch - woke up with pain in right chest like swallowed an air bubble - now dull ache running down the right arm and right shoulder - Wants to know whether working with heavy equipment caused this. First of all I would request you to never take Aspirin since you had a history of damaged esophagus in the past. Secondly, coming back to your question of pain: Yes, working with heavy equipment can be the reason for such pains which develop on odd-sleeping stretching or contracting the already ailing muscles of the neck. These go into spasm and can cause pain like radiculopathy originating from the spine but felt in the arm, shoulder and chest. I would suggest you the following: - First of all go for a clinical evaluation by a Doctor and get an ECG / EKG of the heart although the pain is right sided.; get an X-ray of the neck in the lateral and AP position to see for the cervical spine changes (not expected much as you are just 22 years old) - Always take a PPI like Omeprazole or Pantoprazole whenever you are taking any medicines. - You may need a Rubrafacient liniment to be applied to the neck to give warmth and relaxation to the muscles and may be sufficient in some cases. - Anti-inflammatory medicines with painkiller properties and still better in your case the painkillers to reduce the pain and spasms. - A doctor can help you the most, if he does a clinical evaluation, actual examination and investigations if needed, and also you get a valid prescription as most of the medicines need prescription. May I please know the exact nature of the work with heavy equipment you are doing? Any vibratory effects too? I hope this answer helps you with some precautions that you must take, for proper diagnosis and management. Please feel free to ask relevant queries if you need to or if you feel that there is a gap-of-communication.