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HepC and shoulder pain?
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HepC and shoulder pain?

I have a problem with advanced osteo-arthritis, it's in my upper back and neck.  The last couple of months it has gotten alot worse.  I saw this movie on youtube and it mentioned shoulder pain as a symptom.  Does anyone here suffer from the symptom of shoulder pain?  If so, could you elaborate a little?  What do I do now, for the pain?  I'm open to almost all suggestions, in other words I know about drugs and we don't need to go there.  Do any exercises  make you feel better?  thanks

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J4TCo-qVoKk
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23 Comments Post a Comment
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253566_tn?1219683299
Woke up one day last year with terrible shoulder pain. After a couple visits to the GP & them realizing that I had lost range of motion was given an MRI.

I was diagnosed with tendinosis NOT tendinitis as they couldnt figure out where the tear was coming from as I had not had any surgery or accidents in that area while in bed that nite...

The thing that worked, other than vicodin, has been a TENS unit. It wasnt available for me with my insurance but mom decided to try (it was offered to her for her issues but she declined) to get one for me.

It has helped a lot. Physical therapy helped for a month then went back to its original state.

good luck in your care,
frank
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi there- i am labelled hep c positive by the authorities-did treament once didnt get a SVR-  
doing chines herbal regimin now-good results as far as overall well being is concerned-
I got really bad right shoulder pains a few months back-like the pain was in the middle of the bone-usually worse at night lying on that side-
weekly accupuncture sessions from a good chinese accupuncturist has certainly lessened the pain to almost zero- havin said that the accupuncture was quite painful but it did the job!!!
do you play guitar?  I do right handed-- hence vulnerablity in right shoulder from all that playing for 20 yrs!!
well wishes
Rob in ireland
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408795_tn?1324939275
Yeah I do play guitar, fortunately it's more of a passion and isn't the way I make money, but I've had to play less and less as the pain persists.  I do have a tens unit and I've recently brought it out for use.  It's really strange that the pain has intensified so much, as I really don't think it's HepC related but who knows.  I was seeing a message therapist monthly for around half a year but I've put that idea on hold.  With the tens unit and pain meds I get by and I'm also now incorporating exercise into the mix.  thanks  
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Avatar_n_tn
If you search my past posts, you will find quite a bit of comment on the ongoing shoulder and neck pain that I have dealt with from HCV and possibly also from the long tx'es.  I am almost five years SVR, and suffer worse shoulder problems than ever in the past, and have a very hard time sleeping on either side, because my shoulder feels like it is going to explode in pain.  I have done the MRI's and everything else, with no really definitive diagnosis.

I believe that HCV is very much associated with chronic neck pain, and the shoulder problems are probably directly related as well.  Who knows what the mechanism for the problem is....it might be the cytokine reactions to the HCV (more immune system driven), or direct damage from the virus (cellular or nerve tissue damage), and with the interferon therapy, you have another very powerful and damaging force, that may cause long term physical changes ranging from immune system modulation and regulation, to direct nerve damage!  All in all, the problems are really difficult to sort out, and more difficult to treat.  I have no really good answers, and worry about what I will feel like ten or twenty more years down the road!!!  And I am SVR!  You would think there would be a few really nice benefits from being SVR, not a compounding of the prior problems.  Its frustrating and a detriment to normal functioning.

I still think that HCV does far more damage than most people currently realize.  I think our entire system suffers in many ways, including lymphatic, cardiovascular, spinal and joints, brain, connective tissue, salivary system, gastric, etc.   It does many different things to people, without being identified as the real culprit.  Much of the damage is subtle until decades have passed, then it shows up as diabetes, stroke, brain hemorrhage, lymphoma, autoimmune disease, and of course liver failure.  

Read the old posts, and you will find lots of discussion on this subject.

DoubleDose
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253566_tn?1219683299
Hi DoubleDose, I would also hope that being SVR bring all of us some positive benefits and that our liver gurus understand that HCV and the therapies to treat cause much damage.

What amazes me is that all my GPs, their nurses, liver nurses all believe it is HCV and treatment that has messed us up then you get to the liver gurus and they say NO, NO, NO... sending us here and there instead of studying the issues.

take care all,
frank
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475300_tn?1312426726
I am dumbfounded reading about neck & shoulder pain associated with this disease.  Mine started about 9 years ago & my pcp sent me for therapy (made it worse) x-rays (found nothing) artheritis bloodwork (nothing) fibromialgia (fibromyalgia) (don't think so).  He always prescribed soma along with vicodan, talk about a zombie.  Didn't like the vicodan at all but can function on the soma.  I even went to a pain clinic where they injected some mixture into my neck, felt like I had a bowling ball on my shoulders with nothing connecting them.  I have every massager available, don't help much.  Then we figured a hot tub would be the answer, not really.  I finally found a really good chiropractor after 2 not so good ones.  The new chiro has given me the most relief for a few days and the soma as needed seem to help the most.  My hope was that after this was all over (5 weeks now) the muscle pain would go away.  It doesn't sound like it will after much reading in the archives.  Even during tx I had a really, really bad left arm / shoulder pain....felt like I broke something but nothing showed on am mri.  It all makes sense now.

Denise

Denise
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Avatar_f_tn
I often have shoulder pain and I too have arthritis and Osteo.  My pain comes if I carry a purse over my should, or wear a bra too long.
when I get home from anywhere...Off come the bra!    The straps kill me.  I have found if I stop carrying thins on my shoulder or do not lift anything over a few pounds I do alright.   Lifted a bag of garden mulch the other day and mt neck aand shoulder was killing me.
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113932_tn?1189759424
I treated a year and a half ago. I had been experiencing left shoulder pain that came and went for a few years before treating and then during treatment the pain became severe. It got to the point that I went to a doctor. I had x-rays with and without the contrasting dye, physical therpay and finally an MRI. The MRI showed that I had extensive damage and needed surgery. The MRI showed that my shoulder had been dislocated several times, but that was not the case. I had a fairly long wild streak during my younger years but I am pretty sure that I'd have remembered a dislocation. I don't know if treatment, or the disease has some effect on shoulders, but I've seen questions specifically about left shoulder pain many times on these boards. Makes a believer out of me that the two are somehow related. Kathy
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149675_tn?1257636570
I find all of this interesting. I also have had pain in my shoulder and neck for years. I have had to do physical therapy twice for my neck and was diagnosed with cervical radiculopathy. My arm would go numb on me when it really flared up bad. I also have morton's neuroma (which is in my foot) and very painful. It causes my toe to go numb and sometimes wakes me up at night out of a deep sleep with intense pain in my foot. It has been injected twice which has not helped. I have asked my GI doc a few times and he says none of this is from the HCV. I am treatment naive but high VL. I have been convinced for a few years that they are all related somehow. I agree with DD that I think this is systemic and that they do not know enough about it yet. I am 46 and should not feel like I am 86, which I do.
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Avatar_n_tn
In summary, I think that the issue of chronic neck and shoulder pain, and its connection to HCV, should continue to be discussed, by those affected, on the forum, and should receive attention in the research and medical community if only for them to acknowledge that indeed these are common extrahepatic manifestations of HCV.  Many people would benefit from understanding early on in their HCV progression that much of the arthritic problems that they experience, especially in the neck and shoulder areas, are likely due to little understood actions of the virus.  It would save a lot of time and expense chasing around for diagnoses, and treatments that might not even relate to the underlying problem.

I hope that other forum members who have had similar experiences with neck and shoulder problems will share their histories and opinions in this thread, and also will feel free to ask questions, or comment about their other extrahepatic symptoms.  We all need to understand which symptoms are commonplace, and cause problems for a large segment of the HCV (and post-HCV) population, and which might not be common or related to the HCV.  By doing this we may be able to fill in many of the gaps that the doctors and researchers have not adequately addressed yet.

By the same token, I would like to hear from those who have never experienced the arthritic symptoms as a result of their HCV.  Maybe they are a different subset of the HCV population, and may respond differently to the virus.  Maybe the immune system operates differently in different individuals.  I would also like to know how common it is to have no extrahepatic symptoms.

DoubleDose
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408795_tn?1324939275
I'll be checking out your previous posts, I've learned alot off everyone's posts.  I did a google search and there's quite a bit of information, which brings up even more questions.  Here's one link that I thought was very interesting even tho it's from 94', looks like it's from a researcher from across the globe.  I'm sure there's newer stuff as well, but I've quoted the part that I particularly liked reading.  I guess I will find out soon enough whether or not my osteo, gets better or worse with tx.   later

http://www.asm.org/Media/index.asp?bid=31134

"The best treatment for this patients would be a combination of the treatment for chronic hepatitis C virus infection (PEG-interferon + Ribavirin) plus any of the treatments for their chronic arthritis. Many times these patients having a peripheral chronic inflammatory arhtritis associated with hepatitis C virus infection, improve just with the treatment against the hepatitis C virus".
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Avatar_f_tn
I treated in 2007 for HCV with interferon and ribavirin for Geno 2b; last July I was UND, and in October UND, and January 08 UND, or now doctor says SVR.  It seems I've always had some shoulder/neck discomfort.  Since last Sept. it has gotten worse, but it affects the left side of body more. My arm area (rotator cuff area) feels discomfort now. I've had massages but that does not eliminate.  I don't know if the HCV is a culprit to this but I do know that if I get exercise, it seems to help.  Some days are worse than other days too.  
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Avatar_m_tn
are you  currently  taking any prescription  pain meds foe your pain? i feel for ya vince
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408795_tn?1324939275
Yes, I have two things going on with my back, but only one thing now and it's the osteoarthritis.  I get methadone to treat the pain, I also have a first degree spondylolisthesis.  thanks
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149675_tn?1257636570
I know you have posted about this kind of stuff for quite some time as I read a lot of your posts over time. I just wanted to add to what I mentioned earlier. I said I know this is a systemic disease and not just one that effects the liver. That is pretty much established in the medical journals. I mentioned about the Morton's neuroma in my earlier post. I had asked the doctors a few times if the pain in my foot is  neuropathy and they (GI and Podiatrist) told me no. I have had my foot injected with cortisone twice and bought expensive orthodics (insurance won't pay for them) and nothing has really helped it a lot. it gets a little better but not completely until it is back to waking me up at night. To make a long story short I just had a MRI done before they injected a 3rd time because I asked if we can stop treating the symptom and find the cause. My doctor called me today and said the MRI shows no Morton's Neuroma. My doctor said he is not sure what it is. I am not an expert or a hypochondriac but i have been convinced this is a result of my HCV. I have many other joint pains and stuff that make me feel much older than I am. I am convinced there is a relationship with all of this.
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315996_tn?1321809719
Sleeping habits? Change type of pillow? I have a crink in my neck and it helps to stretch my neck before bedtime. Looking out a bus/train window only on one side? Did I already mention sleeping habits? I was getting elbowitis and found that it was caused with sleeping with my hand under my head. Did I mention stretching?
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408795_tn?1324939275
You could be absolutely right with your thinking.  So I'm curious as to how long you've been HepC positive and if you ever plan on tx?  As my pain intensifies, I've come to realize that I don't have much to lose, but all this painful misery.  Of course I still think what am I up against here?  HepC is still such an enigma especially in terms of tx, sx, length of tx etc.?  Especially since I had infectious hep as a teenager and was out of school for a couple of months.  It's possible that it doesn't have any bearing on my tx, however I've been wondering how many relapsers or non-responders had infectious hep as a youth?  Anyone?  later

"I am not an expert or a hypochondriac but i have been convinced this is a result of my HCV. I have many other joint pains and stuff that make me feel much older than I am. I am convinced there is a relationship with all of this".  




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149675_tn?1257636570
I have had HCV for about 25 years maybe? I am treatment naive. I have geno 1a with high VL. I have researched this disease to death as alot of us have. I have had 2 biopsy's in the last 5 years and both were the same stage 2 grade 2. My enzymes are always in the normal range. This is partially what I have based my not treating on. I figured that being stage 2 and never having any change in biopsy or elevated enzymes I have time to wait for something else to come along. I considered doing a trial for NM 283 about a year ago but changed my mind (trial ended up being stopped). Lately (last couple of years) I have been becoming much more symptomatic. I am beginning to think that I may have to reconsider my delaying of treatment but have not fully decided one way or another. I tend to walk around in denial most of the time about having this. I sort of pretend I am healthy and never think about it Only to have it tap me on the shoulder  saying "hey remember me I am still here". I am not a person who lets this consume me or define me. Hell other than my immediate family no one even knows I have this. I am finding it harder and harder as time goes on as I am feeling it more and more.
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408795_tn?1324939275
Yes I have a similiar diagnosis as yours, my last biopsy was in 2005 and these were the results; grade 1=minimally active, stage 1 to focally 2.  Nobody knows about my status either, just my family and some other friends who I no longer see.  I've chosen to treat b/c my VL is 4 million, that's not very high.  However I'm also 54 so I figure this would be a good time health wise and I also have a young son.  I just started to consider getting tx at the beginning of this year, prior to that I was gonna stay on "watch and wait" till I got to stage 3.  I've already submitted my intake work at a clinical trial site so it's gonna be very interesting to see what they unearth when they do their tests.  I'm going along with the presumption that I will tx and shake this pain along with achieving a SVR.  Of course in tx you never know what the outcome will be so there's more to be revealed, I'm sure.    later    
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Avatar_f_tn
Just wanted to add:

I intermittantly suffer neck and back pain.  I work all day on a computer and then usually come home and spend many hours on my home computer when I'm not doing housework and all the other manual tasks life requires.  I have worked 30 years. I know all the OH&S rules on how one should sit at a computer, lift things etc but at the moment I am sitting stretched out on my chair with one foot up and one stretched out.  Needless to say I don't follow OH&S  rules real well.  A lot of people at work complain about neck, back and shoulder pain (the majority who I could safely bet are not HCV)  The people with these problems are mostly all in my age group of 40+.  I also find that if I have something stressful either my back or neck will "go out" and again I have had non HCV people complain of this.

Perhaps in my case it is the HCV but then again maybe I have just worn myself out over the years and it's a totally separate issue altogether.
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408795_tn?1324939275
Yes I too sit in front of a computer all day processing applications etc.  I developed my osteoarthritis after an accident I had in 1982 so I been dealing with the pain for a very long time.  What bugs me is I don't have any idea what made the pain intensify, sure I'm getting older and I've reduced my meds, but I reduced the meds after the pain intensified.  I can up my dosage back up, but I will feel the pain regardless.  Guess I'll find out more as I get closer to tx.  I also have stressful time periods that send my pain directly to my back and neck.  It's like the stress lodges itself in the worst possible places.  Excercise helps, but somedays are worse than others.   God Bless  
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233616_tn?1312790796
I have to say it depends on what is causing it as to what you can do...and there are ten gd answers. write to me privately if yu want a detailed answer as I cannot d it tonight.
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408795_tn?1324939275
Will do, I'll get back to you soon.  later
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