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Diagnosis for Pain in Upper Arms...while SLEEPING?
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Diagnosis for Pain in Upper Arms...while SLEEPING?

This is really weird and I can't seem to find an answer anywhere on the internet....so I thought I would try here.  Anytime I am lying down, going to sleep, or sleeping... I have this intense pain in my upper arms.  It only happens while I am lying down or asleep.  It is like an aching pain with some numbness.  It is so intense, it keeps me from falling asleep.  I have been taking some old pain meds, from an unrelated uterus surgery a year ago...and even those do not help.  

The weird thing is... if I unfold my arms and lay with them ...straight out to my side horizontal like...the pain eases and sometimes goes away (though not completely...just enough to sleep).  However, if they are bent/folded in any kind of way or vertical to my body...it is very painful.  I can also find some relief if I put them over my head while lying there.  I also find myself shaking them..vigorously...just to get the pain to subside.  It is in both arms and I do not understand!

I also now have been having a little of neck pain lately...though not as intense.  It just feels like there's a crick in my neck.  The biggest thing is the ache and pain in my arms at night/lying down. I have not had any prior problems or trauma.  This started in my right arm (I am right handed).  It then stopped for a few months...but is now happening in both arms.  It keeps me from sleeping because the pain is soooo intense!  Any help would be greatly appreciated!

BTW... I am a full time student and only work part time at the college.  I don't do anything repetitive, drive long hours, or participate in any sports.  I exercise about 2x a month on the treadmill.  Hopes this helps!
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2 Comments
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563773_tn?1374250139
Hello,

Your symptoms are suggestive of thoracic outlet syndrome. Thoracic Outlet Syndrome symptoms are generally caused by compression of the soft tissues at the side of the neck.Nerve bundle called the brachial plexus passes through this area and their compression or entrapment in a certain posture of the body causes pain. This condition called “Brachial Neuritis”, or “Brachial Neuralgia” is a part and parcel of thoracic outlet syndrome.

Aches or pains may be constant, or may occur only when moving parts of the upper body, or holding those body parts in certain positions. Sleeping can bring on increased symptoms due to the compression of the nerve plexus or blood vessels when lying down.

Thoracic outlet syndrome can occur as a result of spinal stenosis,spinal herniation or prolapse of the disc at the level of C7 or thoracic levels of spinal cord.

I sincerely advise you to get CT/mRI neck and upper spine done and consult a neurologist and discuss this problem with him. If you have Thoracic Outlet Syndrome it is essential that you correct any posture imbalances that you may have, whether in a sitting posture or in a standing posture. It is also very important to make sure that the pillow you use under your head is the correct size and thickness for your body.Avoid stretching of shoulders and apply warm compresses on the part.More severe cases may need steroid injections.

Hope I have provided you with sufficient information. In case, you need any more you are most welcome to ask.

Take care and God bless
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351246_tn?1379685732
Hi
I am so sorry to learn about your symptoms and equally sorry to tell you that the pain in your arms is probably due to your cervical nerves (which supply your arms and originate in the neck) being compressed. The nerve compression could be due to wrong posture while sitting, lying down or due to early spondolytic changes. You need to consult a good orthopedic consultant for this. Maybe you will need to undergo X-rays, CT scans or MRI for this.
I am giving you a good link that explains your condition well. Please go through it and let me know if you have any questions.
http://www.apta.org/AM/Template.cfm?Section=Search&template=/CM/HTMLDisplay.cfm&ContentID=24761
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