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Thread: Shoulder Pain

  1. #1
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    Nov 2011
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    Shoulder Pain

    My daughter was recently diagnosed with idiopathic scoliosis and began wearing a brace. The scoliosis came to our attention because of a muscle knot and pain in her left shoulder. The muscle between her shoulder blades (trapezius muscle), is very hard. The muscle is much larger on her left side and seems normal on the right. The right should is much lower. We try to massage the muscle to make it feel better, but nothing seems to work. My daughter went to 6 weeks of Physical Therapy last year to try to resolve the shoulder pain. Since P/T wasn't working, we were sent to the Orthopedic Doctor who diagnosed the scoliosis.

    Has anyone experienced shoulder pain with scoliosis? I am assuming the curve in the back is causing a muscular problem in the shoulder. The Orthopedic Doctor told us there is nothing we can do -- he thought thatphysical therapy would not help. Does anyone have any other suggestions?

    Thanks,
    Linda

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by LMB123 View Post
    My daughter was recently diagnosed with idiopathic scoliosis and began wearing a brace. The scoliosis came to our attention because of a muscle knot and pain in her left shoulder. The muscle between her shoulder blades (trapezius muscle), is very hard. The muscle is much larger on her left side and seems normal on the right. The right should is much lower. We try to massage the muscle to make it feel better, but nothing seems to work. My daughter went to 6 weeks of Physical Therapy last year to try to resolve the shoulder pain. Since P/T wasn't working, we were sent to the Orthopedic Doctor who diagnosed the scoliosis.

    Has anyone experienced shoulder pain with scoliosis? I am assuming the curve in the back is causing a muscular problem in the shoulder. The Orthopedic Doctor told us there is nothing we can do -- he thought thatphysical therapy would not help. Does anyone have any other suggestions?

    Thanks,
    Linda
    My bone daughter has pain in the area of the shoulder blade but I think that was due to her curve moving so quickly. It persisted after she was fused for several weeks and then went away for good. That wouldn't apply to your daughter who has a smaller curve that is not progressing if I am remembering correctly.

    Is the curve very high and impinging on the should blade in any way? Is it a left T curve? If so, I am sure your surgeon suggested more imaging as that is not usual and may be associated with other things.

    Scoliosis can cause back pain. The old view that it doesn't is simply wrong. I posted a blog form a surgeon who was talking about this. I will try to find that.
    Sharon, mother of identical twin girls with scoliosis

    No island of sanity.

    Question: What do you call alternative medicine that works?
    Answer: Medicine


    "We are all African."

  3. #3
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    This is one thread on this issue. I think I started another which i will have to find.

    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/showt...have-back-pain
    Sharon, mother of identical twin girls with scoliosis

    No island of sanity.

    Question: What do you call alternative medicine that works?
    Answer: Medicine


    "We are all African."

  4. #4
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    Here is the other thread on back pain in kids...

    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/showt...ids&highlight=
    Sharon, mother of identical twin girls with scoliosis

    No island of sanity.

    Question: What do you call alternative medicine that works?
    Answer: Medicine


    "We are all African."

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    Welcome, Linda.

    I don't know how bad your daughter's scoliosis is, but I definitely have shoulder and neck pain associated with mine. I also have radiculopathy down my left arm and now my right side is starting to bother me as well. I've had an elevated left shoulder due to an unusual curve type of a very high left thoracic curve. My right thoracic compensatory curve is progressing pretty steadily and has dropped my left shoulder and made me look more balanced, but now the right shoulder is starting to hurt, too. The muscle spasms are very hard to deal with, but unfortunately come with the territory. I get trigger point injections in mine to break them up, but they only last for a little over a month. They have never been able to break up the knotted upper left trapezius. It feels like bone and my doctor has dulled several needles trying to break it up, without success. He's still trying to figure out what to do about that one. But it has been painful and knotted for over 30 years, so I might be stuck with it. I also take two different muscle relaxant medications on a regular basis to help, which it does help but definitely not a cure. By the way I'm a 43 y/o female.

    I'm not trying to scare you. Hopefully, your daughter is young enough that you can get the spasm problem under control now so she doesn't end up like me later. Best wishes for finding the help you need.

    Rohrer01

  6. #6
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    Oct 2011
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    East Central FL
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    Son had bad shoulder pain that kept worsening over several months (he didn't tell us it actually , then he was diagnosed w scoliosis & lordosis. Once he started physical therapy specifically to strengthen his rhomboid in preparation for surgery, he found immediate reduction in the pain level. No further pain in his right shoulder since surgery, ironically it's switched to the right, I assume as everything continues to shift around. Have you discussed further pt or looked into another facility? How old is your daughter and where/how severe are her curves? It's so tough to see your own child in pain, my sympathy to you both.
    Last edited by LSKOCH5; 01-22-2012 at 05:20 PM.
    Mom of 14yo son diagnosed Oct 2011
    Surgery 1/3/12 w Dr. Geof Cronen,
    Tampa General Hospital T3 to L1
    Jacob's pre surg curves: T58 & L31 12/28/11
    photos & xrays in "First-Time Surgery" thread "Before & After"

  7. #7
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    Nov 2011
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    8

    Thank You for the Feedback

    My daughter has a 26 degree curve in the mid thorasic region. Compensatory is low 20s. I hope this is not a permanent condition; but when I think about it she has complained of a knot in her shoulder for more than two years. Physical therapy did not help and cost us a lot of money. I'm going to try yoga shoulder stretches and exercise for now.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by LMB123 View Post
    My daughter has a 26 degree curve in the mid thorasic region. Compensatory is low 20s. I hope this is not a permanent condition; but when I think about it she has complained of a knot in her shoulder for more than two years. Physical therapy did not help and cost us a lot of money. I'm going to try yoga shoulder stretches and exercise for now.
    I don't know how old she is, so don't know if trigger point injections would be an option. I go to a physiatrist in the Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation / Neurology section of my hospital. They can do them with or without steroids (IF they did them, I would guess it would be without steroid). They aren't painful, but may be scary for a child because they do feel like shots, but they numb you up with the shots and then do the needling, so it doesn't hurt. You are sore for a day or two afterwards, but then get quite substantial relief for quite some time. I really don't know if they will do this for kids, though.

    More realistically, here is a less invasive way to treat muscle spasms: warm compresses and pressure point therapy. This you can do at home. You find the muscle spasm and put gentle pressure on it, so as not to hurt. Have her take a deep breath every minute or so, and as you feel the muscle release (you'll feel the muscle actually twitch and relax - usually on exhale) then you increase the pressure a little. You keep doing this. You will be surprised at how much pressure you can put on a muscle this way with NO pain. Then you put a warm compress on it. It can help with acute muscle pain. I do it to myself all of the time. I wish I had known about this as a child.

  9. #9
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    Mar 2012
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    Carson City, NV
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    Know your concern

    We are still learning a lot every day, but my daughter has quite a bit of pain in her shoulders and in her back, doctor says it shouldn't hurt, but it does...I give her massages and advil and just try to wait it out with her until the next appointment.

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