No diagnosis


I have chronic pain in my neck, shoulders and upper back. Disturbs my sleep. Usually wears off once I've been up about half an hour. Lately pain during day now too. Started 14 yrs ago just at my shoulder blade and has increased over the years. Sometimes down my arms and into hands. I can't get anywhere with doctors except blood tests and naproxin. At my wits end now.



  • chrisb
    chrisb Moderator Posts: 663

    Hi @Georgia (Susan), 

    Welcome to the versus arthritis forum. 

    You suffer with pain in your neck, shoulders and upper back which is causing issue with sleeping. This started many years ago and periodically also affects your arms and hands. It sounds like you’d appreciate input from others who have found themselves in a similar situation. 

    Well you’ve definitely come to the right place to share your situation and I hope that forum members can offer you some advice based upon their own experiences. 

    In the interim, these links to our website may be of interest:

    Just a thought, but if your advice to date has been from your GP then it might be appropriate to ask him/her to refer you to a rheumatologist. 

    I hope you receive some useful feedback. 

    Best Wishes

    ChrisB (Moderator)

    Need more help - call our Helpline on 0800 5200 520 Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm

  • Hi@Georgia

    Thanks for your post to the Helpline. If you are looking for investigations to diagnose what's going on, then you might ask the GP if they would refer you to a musculoskeletal clinic (MSK). Typically a senior physio will do a triage and often they can order an x-ray or whatever investigations to look into the matter.

    During a diagnosis limbo it's worth focussing on the things which are helpful for all types of arthritis - and they are daily physio routines and having plenty of gentle exercise, as well as healthy eating to keep your weight down.

    Back pain | Causes, exercises, treatments | Versus Arthritis

    Arthritis | Causes, symptoms, treatment | Versus Arthritis

    Do ring us for some support. 0800 5200520 Mon-Fri 9am-6pm

    all the best

    Guy Helpline Team

  • Hi, I understand what Susan is going through, similar to me, my GP (when I can get an appointment,) does not appear to understand about my pain, or maybe I’m not saying the right things. I am sore and stiff when I get up, usually after a bad nights sleep. Am going to try and see my GP this week see if I can at least get a blood test.

  • Brynmor
    Brynmor Member Posts: 1,755

    Hi @Edenrose12 welcome to the online Community.

    It is quite difficult to get other people to understand the pain you experience and then finding the right words that conveys that information. One idea you might try is keeping a pain diary: this not only helps record your pain levels on a daily basis but also is useful to show the GP when you have a consultation.

    We have a great section on the web site on the subject of pain management which includes ideas for sleeping better:

    I also experience painful stiffness in the mornings and have now tried out some of the stretching exercises that you can find in the Morning Stretching Routines video:

    Please do join in across the Community and come back to say how you get on with the GP appointment. You will be most welcome.

    All best wishes