T Nation

Question about My Mother:


My mother's in her mid 40s and has been suffering from pain and stiffness in her shoulder and neck for about a year. When driving, or working over a counter, she gets a numbness and tingling in her shoulder. Previously she would get tingling or numbness sometimes radiating down her arm.

She's gone to chiropractors and is currently seeing an acupuncturist. I'd like to figure out something more permanent so she's not living with the discomfort all the time. I'm not sure if she needs some exercise or supplement to strengthen and heal things, or what.

Any ideas/advice is appreciated.


When I was 13/14 I had something very like this.
I had the numbness and tingling down my arm and often I would not be able to feel my little finger.

I turned out to be a small cyst on my shoulder that was pressing down on a vein and impeding proper blood flow.

My cyst showed as a small bump at the back (upper trap area)of my shoulder.
Got it removed with a surgery(~45 min) and that solved it.

Alternatively, it could be a frozen shoulder, which comes from a drastic, sudden reduction in physical activity. (mom got it when she stopped spending time picking up heavy stuff at work)


I am biased. Look up a physical therapist in your area that practices McKenzie at www.mckenziemdt.org.


My friend's father had all of those same symptoms, minus the numbness and tingling. MRI revealed rotator cuff tears and mild shoulder impingement. He's 73 and surgery is not advisable.

Cortisone injection, NSAIDS, physical therapy (focusing on scapular strengthening) and rest were prescribed. Also, ordered to "stop injuring himself". He falls occasionally and stops himself with his arms, and that worsens the condition.

Took one year to heal with this treatment.

In most cases, pain radiating down the arm originates in the shoulder, and is called "referred" pain from a shoulder injury.

If your mother has poor posture (rounded upper back, shoulders "flopped" forward) this contributes to shoulder problems.

As for the numbness - I've heard about impingement conditions compressing a nerve and causing such sensations.