Is this Fibro, Arthritis or something else?

The last few weeks especially I have been having more trouble with my right shoulder. When I have my arm by my side or close to it then it isn’t any worse than normal. But if I raise my arm over my head, say to take a t-shirt off, or reach for something, then I have increased pain. If I try to lift something, even lighter weight like my cane or a plate, then the pain level jumps considerably. At times my shoulder or arm will give out and I will drop whatever I was picking up.

Hello, strugglinginKs! So sorry to hear your shoulder pain! and the dropping - unpredictably - is disconcerting and scary!

Not a doctor - you should call yours -

for me with same symptoms in September 2020, the orthopedist decided tendinitis and sent me home with exercises every day for a month. It hurt but worked and ok since, and no more dropping [really hard on the coffee cups :wink: ]

I didn’t really understand, as he said it was my rotator cuff but the pain was underneath my shoulderblade and spiraling down around my upper arm to the inside of the elbow . . funny how things can move around our bodies . .

there’s a reason I’m not a doctor :wink:

Good Luck and I hope you find an answer and much better by the new year. Sending hopeful wishes, ra49 :turtle:

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This sounds like a visit to the orthopedist may be in order. You may be able to do a telehealth visit even to start with, in order to determine appropriate imaging and/or next steps. I know that when my ac joint became problematic, it was crazy easy for the doctor to diagnose based on specific moves causing me pain. In that case, imaging was just used to rule out any additional problems.

Sharon from ModSupport

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Hi S.K. ! I agree, I would see a doctor. If you wait too long, sometimes you can have irreversible damage. Most likely, they will order imaging. From my experience, physical therapy is ordered to strengthen the muscles unless you have a tear in your rotator cuff. Here’s a little medical tip that applies when seeing a doctor. Sometimes I’ve said, if it was your mother, what would you recommend? It allows a doctor to take a step back and look at your situation from a different perspective. In the end, you are the one to say yes or no. Make sense?


Thanks everyone for the advice. I was afraid you all would tell me that. :confounded: At this point though I guess I will just have to be careful with it. I can’t afford imaging, x-rays and all that. At this point I can’t even swing the office visit so that the doctor will refill my depression meds. :cry:

I wonder if you could go online and look up exercises to strengthen the shoulder (I hesitate to suggest this, b/c you don’t know exactly what’s wrong with it, and you don’t want to damage it further…). You should definitely call your primary care doctor first, and ask if this is a good idea, since you can’t afford x-rays, etc… Maybe try to strengthen the muscles around your shoulder -Your arms, neck, back…and go slow, since it will be new. Just basic exercises that can help your body - Stretching daily helps me tremendously (I’m trying to be better to my body!). And be sure to put ice or heat on it - whichever helps you the most. I like ice. Some people alternate, doing both. In other words, contact your doc and see what you can do for yourself that won’t cost you. I know there are online medical people that will chat with you, but I’ve never tried that, so I can’t make any recommendations.
Don’t give up, and hang in there, sweet friend!!! :purple_heart:

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I got one of those stretchy bands last night from a friend and want to start using it. It had a couple of basic exercises on a paper with it and I want to look for some others.

I just found out that my doctor is no longer with the clinic, he left after being there just under 2 years. So will have to start over if I want a PCP.

I got to wondering with my shoulder if it isn’t at least partly the arthritis worsening and also maybe it getting - I don’t know that weaker is the word I want, but it is all my brain will give me! :roll_eyes: I have had trouble with that shoulder for years - I can dislocate it surprisingly easy. Fortunately, it will fix itself just as easily, though not any less painfully. And while I haven’t dislocated it recently, that is rather what it is reminding me of.

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It is rather bothersome. I have dealt with that with my hands for years and have lost cups, plates and other dishes over the years. This is the first time I have had issues with my shoulder doing it though.

Hi, StrugglinginKs!
I hope you will keep us updated. Having arthritis (and other issues) with my shoulders, I can definitely sympathize! :hugs: And the fibro magnifies the pain! So, whatever the issue, it’s pretty certain that your FMS is making it feel even worse!