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Dr. Arun Phophalia
Dr. Arun Phophalia, Doctor (MD)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 34667
Experience:  MBBS, MS (General Surgery), Fellowship in Sports Medicine
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I have been having right shoulder and neck pain for three days,

Resolved Question:

I have been having right shoulder and neck pain for three days, I am also having a hard time taking deep breathes. I am 32, obese and a smoker.
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Dr. Arun Phophalia replied 8 years ago.



Is there any specific tender point on chest?


Are the neck movements and shoulder movements painful?


Are you on any kind of medications?


Any past history of injury, accident or any significant surgical or medical illness?


Dr. Arun

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
My chest does hurt a little bit when I take a deep breathe or yawn, that is right in the center, where it goes from bone to stomach. It does hurt to turn my head, and lift my shoulder. I have MS and take copaxone for that, I also take prevacid and BCP's.
Expert:  Dr. Arun Phophalia replied 8 years ago.



Let me first handle the shoulder and neck pain. This is likely to be muscle sprain. The shoulder and neck have common muscles to act. So one affects the other. Following would be helpful;


1) Neck care in the activities of daily living.

a) No working on computer for more than half an hour in a single stretch. Same for TV.

b) Monitors and televisions exactly in front (180 degrees).

c) Contour pillow: Should fill the hollow when lying on back or straight. Available over the counter.


2) Cervical brace; a rolled towel can give you support.


3) Anti-inflammatory analgesics


4) Physical therapy: gradually increasing exercises from passive stretching to active against resistance regime.


Since your chest tightness was better by inhaler, I feel there is an association with the 3-4 things;


1) An associated gastroesophageal reflux


2) Problems due to smoking


3) An association with the neck problem. A pinched nerves in the neck can give rise pain to shoulder and chest. In this case, cervical traction and deep electrotherapy would be added to the other measures. This can explain all the three, neck, shoulder and chest problem by a single pathology.


4) Costochondritis, which is an inflammation at the junctions of rib and cartilage or with the breast bone. Anti-inflammatory analgesics (Ibuprofen), local analgesic ointment, or spray, chest brace and warm compresses are helpful in this.


Still any chest pain needs high index of suspicion. So getting a chest x-ray would be prudent to concretely rule out any lung pathology. With the risk factors you have (obesity and smoking) a physician examination is mandatory. A physical exam give the concrete clues to the diagnosis.


Read about the costochondritis, in this resource;


Please feel free for your follow up questions.


Dr. Arun

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