Left shoulder pain after eating or drinking

Posted by jrofri @jrofri, Dec 5, 2017

Has anyone experienced severe left shoulder pain, down the upper arm, up the neck to the ear, approximately 15 mins after eating. This pain usually lasts for three hours after eating a meal.

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I could really use some ideas here, my doctors so far have no ideas.

Symptoms over the past few months:
– unintentional/unexplainable weight loss
– pain under left shoulder blade (sometimes worse laying down)
– stool issues (undigested food and light, clay-colored greasy stools that float)
– severe burning pain in back after eating too much fat
– fatigue and malaise that do not ease with rest and sleep
– brusing easily and not healing as quickly
– slightly higher blood sugar than normal despite eating well
– slightly high cholestorol despite eating well
– slightly high bilirubin somtimes

History
I was diagnosed with lynch syndrome so decided to undergo my routine testing. I'd like to note that before any of this I had no pain or digestive issues.
1/17 – Colonoscopy/endoscopy, found gastritis and few ulcers
– Started 40mg pantoprazole 1 a day and 10ml Sucralfate 2x a day that week.
2/1 – I can't stress enough how much that this initial presentation seems to be the beginning of all of this, and may or may not be related to the colonoscopy/endoscopy. I've had theories that this was maybe a reaction to the PPI, and infection/complication from my procedure, or even a covid infection.
– Dull pain under my right rib, increasing with severity throughout the week
– Occasional pain on the left lower quadrant
– End of week, pain in specific points in chest, back and neck, (I can't stress enough how this must have been lymph node pain, but what initial presentation would have lymph nodes all over hurt like this? Would an initial cancer spread into lymph nodes make your body react like this?)
– Angina-like heart pain and pain under right rib occasionally severe
– A few sharp shooting pains up right side and continuing pain in middle left back and under right ribs
– No cough, fever, sniffling
3/1 – Heart pain faded slowly while sometimes wrapping around to back
– Fullness like pain under both ribs sometimes
– Dull pain consistently below left shoulder blade
– Later in month, episodes of sever burning in back after eating high fat foods
– Ultrasound unremarkable
4/5 – ER visit
– Portable ultrasound, CT scan and bloodwork unremarkable
4/25 – MRCP unremarkable
4/29 – HIDA scan – 26% (33% is low range of normal)
5/6 – Follow-up endoscopy showed ulcer healed and stomach acid lowered

Concerns
– Cancer (want to rule out due to Lynch syndrome diagnosis just to be sure), something small that wouldn't show up on CT like neuroendocrine
– Colonoscopy complications – infection/gut biome upset
– Other intenstinal issues/blockages
– Pancreas-related issues: pancreatitis, partial blockage, etc.
– Gallbladder-related issues: gravelley stones or sludge not picked up on scans (The 26 percent definatly falls into biliary dyskinesia territory, but would a malfunctioning GB cause this many issues? It didn't show up inflamed in any of the imaging but I've heard of people getting the surgery and afterwards finding out it was diseased. Would a GB attack make your lymph nodes go crazy though? That seems out of place.

I've been tapering off the PPI and have felt slightly better in some ways, but overall feel very weak, and my stool seems greasy and falls part. Sometimes I've had floating stool, sometimes it's darker, but mostly lighter.

The only bloodwork I did close to the initial presentation was an iron test a week after, which showed transferrin saturation percentage was at 60 (anything over 50 is considered iron overload, so what would that mean??)

I started taking probiotics and I'm getting another ultrasound monday, but I don't know what other tests to really ask for, I'm considering going to Mayo Clinic or Cleveland because if this is something serious but hard to find I feel like the clock has already been ticking for months.

REPLY

I have had extreme left shoulder pain about 10 minutes after beginning to eat, at nearly every meal for 2 years. In Dec of 2020 I had hiatal hernia surgery ( second time in about 12 years.) Had to repair because, from reading these posts, my stomach was “sliding” up behind my heart, the dr said. He also repaired a Nissan I had way back then when a carcinoid tumor was removed (benign).
When the pain continued, after 2020 surgery, gastro and every dr since just looks blankly and then orders another test. I have had ct scan, mri, upper endoscopy, colonoscopy and no positive results for anything…just test results online. Each of these have been many montHs apart. All the comments are that this has nothing to do with the chronic diarrhea I am also experiencing and some bowel incontinence. I’m sure that’s true but can’t seem to get anyone to look at the whole picture. They just suggest a gastroparesis diet for the rest of my life. Not sure that would even help. One prescribed Metamucil and miralax every day. Did that faithfully for 3 months and then concluded it was making things worse, so I quit…
I am 72 and take no prescribed medicine and really don’t have any other health issues.
Any ideas on where to go with this?

REPLY
@bottlexcap

I could really use some ideas here, my doctors so far have no ideas.

Symptoms over the past few months:
– unintentional/unexplainable weight loss
– pain under left shoulder blade (sometimes worse laying down)
– stool issues (undigested food and light, clay-colored greasy stools that float)
– severe burning pain in back after eating too much fat
– fatigue and malaise that do not ease with rest and sleep
– brusing easily and not healing as quickly
– slightly higher blood sugar than normal despite eating well
– slightly high cholestorol despite eating well
– slightly high bilirubin somtimes

History
I was diagnosed with lynch syndrome so decided to undergo my routine testing. I'd like to note that before any of this I had no pain or digestive issues.
1/17 – Colonoscopy/endoscopy, found gastritis and few ulcers
– Started 40mg pantoprazole 1 a day and 10ml Sucralfate 2x a day that week.
2/1 – I can't stress enough how much that this initial presentation seems to be the beginning of all of this, and may or may not be related to the colonoscopy/endoscopy. I've had theories that this was maybe a reaction to the PPI, and infection/complication from my procedure, or even a covid infection.
– Dull pain under my right rib, increasing with severity throughout the week
– Occasional pain on the left lower quadrant
– End of week, pain in specific points in chest, back and neck, (I can't stress enough how this must have been lymph node pain, but what initial presentation would have lymph nodes all over hurt like this? Would an initial cancer spread into lymph nodes make your body react like this?)
– Angina-like heart pain and pain under right rib occasionally severe
– A few sharp shooting pains up right side and continuing pain in middle left back and under right ribs
– No cough, fever, sniffling
3/1 – Heart pain faded slowly while sometimes wrapping around to back
– Fullness like pain under both ribs sometimes
– Dull pain consistently below left shoulder blade
– Later in month, episodes of sever burning in back after eating high fat foods
– Ultrasound unremarkable
4/5 – ER visit
– Portable ultrasound, CT scan and bloodwork unremarkable
4/25 – MRCP unremarkable
4/29 – HIDA scan – 26% (33% is low range of normal)
5/6 – Follow-up endoscopy showed ulcer healed and stomach acid lowered

Concerns
– Cancer (want to rule out due to Lynch syndrome diagnosis just to be sure), something small that wouldn't show up on CT like neuroendocrine
– Colonoscopy complications – infection/gut biome upset
– Other intenstinal issues/blockages
– Pancreas-related issues: pancreatitis, partial blockage, etc.
– Gallbladder-related issues: gravelley stones or sludge not picked up on scans (The 26 percent definatly falls into biliary dyskinesia territory, but would a malfunctioning GB cause this many issues? It didn't show up inflamed in any of the imaging but I've heard of people getting the surgery and afterwards finding out it was diseased. Would a GB attack make your lymph nodes go crazy though? That seems out of place.

I've been tapering off the PPI and have felt slightly better in some ways, but overall feel very weak, and my stool seems greasy and falls part. Sometimes I've had floating stool, sometimes it's darker, but mostly lighter.

The only bloodwork I did close to the initial presentation was an iron test a week after, which showed transferrin saturation percentage was at 60 (anything over 50 is considered iron overload, so what would that mean??)

I started taking probiotics and I'm getting another ultrasound monday, but I don't know what other tests to really ask for, I'm considering going to Mayo Clinic or Cleveland because if this is something serious but hard to find I feel like the clock has already been ticking for months.

Jump to this post

My daughter had some of these same symptoms and was diagnosed with Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency. You might ask about that.

REPLY
@sharth

I have had extreme left shoulder pain about 10 minutes after beginning to eat, at nearly every meal for 2 years. In Dec of 2020 I had hiatal hernia surgery ( second time in about 12 years.) Had to repair because, from reading these posts, my stomach was “sliding” up behind my heart, the dr said. He also repaired a Nissan I had way back then when a carcinoid tumor was removed (benign).
When the pain continued, after 2020 surgery, gastro and every dr since just looks blankly and then orders another test. I have had ct scan, mri, upper endoscopy, colonoscopy and no positive results for anything…just test results online. Each of these have been many montHs apart. All the comments are that this has nothing to do with the chronic diarrhea I am also experiencing and some bowel incontinence. I’m sure that’s true but can’t seem to get anyone to look at the whole picture. They just suggest a gastroparesis diet for the rest of my life. Not sure that would even help. One prescribed Metamucil and miralax every day. Did that faithfully for 3 months and then concluded it was making things worse, so I quit…
I am 72 and take no prescribed medicine and really don’t have any other health issues.
Any ideas on where to go with this?

Jump to this post

Hi @sharth and welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. Your issues definitely sound similar to the other members here. Have you had a chance to go through the 11 pages of comments to see if other members have gotten answers?
Also, have you considered contacting Mayo Clinic to get a second opinion where all the specialist are under one roof?

REPLY
@amandaa

Hi @sharth and welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. Your issues definitely sound similar to the other members here. Have you had a chance to go through the 11 pages of comments to see if other members have gotten answers?
Also, have you considered contacting Mayo Clinic to get a second opinion where all the specialist are under one roof?

Jump to this post

I have read the comments. And,it helps to know what others have done. I have considered contacting Mayo because there seems to be no path forward here. I really don't know how to make that happen. Do I just call…who?

REPLY
@sharth

I have read the comments. And,it helps to know what others have done. I have considered contacting Mayo because there seems to be no path forward here. I really don't know how to make that happen. Do I just call…who?

Jump to this post

When I said "no path here" I was referring to my local doctors. Sure am happy to find this site. Do I need to get a referral to go to Mayo Clinic?

REPLY
@sharth

When I said "no path here" I was referring to my local doctors. Sure am happy to find this site. Do I need to get a referral to go to Mayo Clinic?

Jump to this post

Technically as a Medicare beneficiary you shouldn't, but as a safe bet you might consider trying to obtain one from your PCP.

REPLY
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