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Strange back pain

256 Views 6 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  pollianna
I wonder if this sounds familiar to anyone because it's nothing like I've ever experienced or read about before....

I've been having this pain in my upper back on the left side. It's kind of a dull and sharp pain at the same time, if that makes sense. At first it felt like muscle tension, but in the last several days, it has gotten much, much worse. It's mainly in the left upper back in the shoulder blade area, but it also goes up into the base of my neck.

What's strange is that even though some of the pains have felt like muscle spasms, muscle relaxers have had no effect whatsoever (I've tried 3 different kinds and different strengths). Narcotic pain meds help take the edge off, but I'm still miserable. And another strange thing is that the pain has spread to my upper arm and under the arm, and sometimes in and under both arms.

Of course, I don't expect anyone here to diagnose it :lol: but just wonder if it sounds familiar to anyone and if you can give me your thoughts. I've seen my primary doctor twice about it — she prescribed the muscle relaxers and pain pills but is leaving the investigation up to my rheumatologist who I'm scheduled to see the first week in March.

I wondered about pleurisy, but there is no pain with breathing...just with everything else! :(
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Sorry to hear you are in so much pain.

My first thought when I read your post was pluerisy as well. As an "expert" on plueratic pain now for five years, what you are describing is classic symptoms. Does the pain get worse when you bend over or go to lay down? Pericarditis can cause chest/back pain as well.

We don't always fit neatly into every box. I am guessing that your doctor has checked for pluerisy as well. If you have not gotten a chest xray, I certainly would push for that.

Keep us posted as to what transpires, and give yourself plenty of rest. Pain is so draining, as we all know.
Thanks for that info. It doesn't seem like what I imagined pleurisy to be like (I've never had it before), but it certainly isn't responding to the muscle relaxers at all. And yes, it does feel worse when I lean over even slightly, which I assumed to be the muscles tightening up and going into spasms.

There have been no x-rays or anything, just the prescriptions by my primary doc (she's treating for muscle spasms since that's what I told her it felt like). But I'm sure the rheumatologist will do more testing, I hope!! Just wish I didn't have to live with this until I see her...the appointment is less than 2 weeks away, but right now that seems like a long time.
Have you ever tried Myofascial Release? I was in extreme pain very similar to that over the summer and my doctor felt it was related to my lupus but that meds probably wouldn't help. He sent me to a doctor that specializes in it. The doctor I went to was a D.O and had a chiropractic office but doesn't due chiropracty on Lupus patients. Basically I got some sort of electrotherapy which loosened things up and then he would massage my back. I had to go 3times a week but within 2-3 weeks I felt so much better. Now I go once a month to just keep everything loose.
Just a thought.
I've never tried myofascial release, but that definitely sounds like something my insurance wouldn't cover if it's done by a chiropractor. Thanks for that suggestion, though. I will keep it in mind.

I broke down and called my rheumatologist's office today. The doctor wasn't there, but they moved my appointment up a couple of days, so at least there's two less days of this before I can hopefully get some answers and treatment. I'm hardly able to sleep at all because the pain goes to my arm and armpit at night, and it feels like something's about to explode in there. During the day when I'm up, it moves back around to the upper back and neck. So strange...
Yes, it does sound like something I have but mine is lower back most of the time. I would ask if you have considered going to a chiropractor? It is possible that you could have something pinched. It might be your body telling you that it is out of wack. Anyway thought I would ask about the chiro and it can't hurt to see if one can help while waiting to see the rhuemy right. Let us know how things are going with you.
Sounds familiar to me too. I think mine was tension in the back/shoulder blades but it felt kind of crampy. Nothing touched it and it was so weard a place. Good tht the appointment was moved forward. You seem to have a good rheumie :)
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