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Trapezius/pinched nerve?
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Trapezius/pinched nerve?

Many years ago when I was a young woman, a group of friends and I used to target practice with a bow and arrow. One of my friends brought a compound bow to practice and I tried using it.  The initial resistances on the pull of the bow is very tight but once you get past that point the string pulls very loose.  When I used it and got past the resistance I felt a pop and a shooting pain under my right shoulder blade towards the spine. I went to an orthopedic doctor and he said I injured a large deep muscle that extends from the neck to the waist.  He gave me instructions on how to treat it.  Well, this muscle has waned off and on for years, especially if I over worked it.  

Now I am in my 50's and I have several other things going on.  The pain under the shoulder blade is almost constant now.  I have a desk job with heavy computer work and these last few years I am having problems with numbness in my right arm.  Sometimes it feels like it is coming from my elbow and sometimes my neck.  I awaken in the morning and my arm is numb from my elbow to my fingers.  I have to shake it or keep it hanging at my side until it goes away.  Periodically through the day, especially while using the mouse, all of my right fingers and thumb will go numb and the injury to the shoulder muscle will begin to stab me.  Then my neck gets involved (burning).  Once my neck starts bothering me, the pain under the shoulder blade is intense.  I have to get up from my desk and move around until the numbness and pain is relieved, only to have it start up again once I sit back down.  My question is:  Could the bow injury still be a problem and causing of of this after all these years, or does it sound like I have a new set of problems?
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Dear Jan:

Sorry to hear about your right arm/hand problem.  It is difficult to tell you specifically what the etiology of your problem.  You initial problem sounded more like a muscle problem while your latest problem sounds more nerve(s).  The distribution of the whole hand is a bit unusual.  It tell me that it is likely not something like carpel tunnel, unless you have severe carpel tunnel (waking up at night with hand pain, thumb and first two fingers with numbness and pain initially, shaking your hand relieves the numbness and pain, heavy day of repetitive use of the hand makes your symptoms worse, etc).  I think the best thing to do is to see a neurologist and get a good examination.  Maybe a MRI of your cervical spine might show something.  Based on the exam, one can begin to pinpoint where the problem lies.

Sorry I can't answer your question more completely.

Sincerely,

CCF Neuro MD
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