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Ask Dr. Muneeb Ali Your Own Question
Dr. Muneeb Ali
Dr. Muneeb Ali, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 7425
Experience:  MBBS, MD, MCCM. Currently working in Critical Care Medicine with 10 year experience in Medicine
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I was hoping to speak to someone about a strange pain I've

Customer Question

Hello! I was hoping to speak to someone about a strange pain I've been having in my shoulder for a few days now
JA: How long have you had the pain? What seems to make the pain better or worse?
Customer: I've had it for about two days now (it started Friday afternoon) I seem to notice it more when I'm eating/drinking
JA: Anything else in your medical history you think the doctor should know?
Customer: Nothing that I can think of
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. Muneeb Ali replied 9 months ago.


Welcome to JA and thanks for this question. Im sorry to hear about your symptoms. Can i ask do you have any pain on movement of the shoulder? Is it the right or the left shoulder? Any abdominal pain? Any burning in the chest or abdomen? What is your age and gender?

Expert:  Dr. Muneeb Ali replied 9 months ago.

Since you seem to be offline, ill leave a response here which we can discuss later on. If you have more information about your symptoms or you can answer some of the questions i asked, we can reconsider the possibilities. Let me know if you can give me some more information.

Well from what you are describing there are a number of conditions which can cause pain in the shoulder which worsens on eating or drinking. The first one which comes to mind is that you could have a problem with the stomach such as a stomach ulcer which can sometimes cause radiation of the pain to the shoulder. However in this case you would also have pain in the stomach or atleast burning in the stomach or chest region as well. this would be treated with a clinical examination followed by an endoscopy. But before that drugs like OTC prilosec can be used to treat the problem. Similarly inflammation of the lining of the stomach known as gastritis or even inflammation of the oesophagus (oesophagitis)can cause this problem.

Sometimes inflammation of the gallbladder known as cholecystitis can cause pain which radiates to the tip of the right shoulder and the shoulder blade. This would be diagnosed on an ultrasound of the abdomen. This can also worsen on eating or drinking. The treatment is usually with IV fluids and IV antibiotics.

Now apart from abdominal pathologies it is possible that the pain in the shoulder is due to a pathology which resticted to the shoulder itself. Problems like a simple muscle spasm can cause pain in the shoulder and also restriction of the movement in the shoulder. This would be managed with increased the fluid intake and use of electrolyte rich fluids like gatorade. Using anti inflammatory medications like motrin or aleve would also be useful. Another cause can be a problem like tendinitis which is inflammation of the tendons of the shoulder joint, conditions like adhesive capsulitis can also cause pain. These latter two conditions would also cause restriction of movement in the shoulder joint and well as tenderness in the joint in some cases. A MRI would be diagnostic here. In some cases steroids may be used as well.

I think the best way to determine what is the exact cause would be to have this examined. It is difficult to say without an examination or more information which one of these is the exact cause.

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