A Pinched Nerve From Painting?…What Is The Underlying Cause?

Jim, a 65 year-old business owner, was painting a room in his house when he started to notice a tight cramping feeling in his neck and shoulder.  At first he wasn’t too concerned, but later on in the week, he continued to feel the pain which now started moving down into his right arm.  Occasionally, he even noticed some tingling.  He took some Aleve which seemed to help.  He tried stretching his neck and shoulder; it felt good at the time, but the tight aching feeling soon returned.  When the pain still didn’t subside, he grew concerned that he may have pinched a nerve.  He decided to visit a local chiropractor to have it checked out.

After a thorough orthopedic and neurological exam, his doctor told him he didn’t have a pinched nerve.  When the doctor pushed on certain muscles in his neck and shoulder, the pain and tingling in his arm got worse.  The pain was actually being caused by trigger points in a condition called myofascial pain syndrome.  Jim was then treated with light stretching, heat therapy, massage, and joint mobilizations to help the muscles relax and the trigger points to subside.  After a few painless treatments and some specific at-home stretches, Jim’s pain and tingling had completely disappeared.  He was then released from care.

Myofascial pain syndrome is a condition that affects the muscle and the connective tissue that surrounds it.  In some cases, the area where a person experiences the pain may not be where the pain generator is located.  The actual site of the injury prompts the development of a trigger point that, in turn, causes pain in other areas.  This situation is known as referred pain.  Hence, Jim’s arm pain was actually caused by a neck and shoulder injury.

Many conditions in the neck can cause similar symptoms, so it is important to have your doctor examine you to rule out other serious conditions.

Advanced Spine & Rehab is an integrated clinic specializing in treating senior patients with conservative therapies like chiropractic care, acupuncture, and physiotherapy.  These doctors practice in a professional, gentle, and pressure-free atmosphere. A large portion of their base includes satisfied Medicare patients.  Call us if you have any questions at 435-656-3266 or visit for more info.

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