Home » Case Studies » Arm Pain

Background

  • The client is a 46-year old woman with right arm pain related to a fall on the ice.
  • She indicates that she injured her upper arm (points to the deltoid) and feels tension in her upper left shoulder and neck.
  • The arm injury affects her ability to sleep through the night comfortably without waking.
  • She also experiences numbness, tingling, and occasional swelling in both hands and fingers.

Observations

 

  • Soft tissue manipulation reveals significant tension noted in the soft tissue at the base of the occiput, posterior neck muscles, with restrictions noted in the upper trapezius, supraspinatus, levator scapula, and splenius capitus on the left side.
  • Erector spinae group is extremely tight on both sides of the back, with trigger points palpated near BL15 on both sides. Adhesions are noted in the right bicep, at the proximal attachment points, as well as in the belly of the muscle.
  • Trigger points are noted in conjunction with these adhesions and pressing and holding these trigger points causes significant discomfort.
  • A cluster of trigger points is also noted in conjunction with HT1 at the armpit.p is normalized.
  • The client will continue with maintenance work every 4-6 weeks as needed.

Treatment

 

  • The client begins with four 90-minute sessions, to include work on the back with a focus on the right upper arm.
  • Chinese medical massage pressing, pushing, kneading, grasping and rolling is performed on the neck, back, and right arm, along with deep tissue stripping and frictioning along individual muscle fibers.
  • Stationary cups are placed at LU2 and ashi points (points where adhesions are noted) along the bicep for 10-15 minutes.
  • Acupressure points focused on for arm/shoulder pain include: LU2, LI4, SI11, SI6.

Outcome

  • Following the first session, the client reports feeling improvement in the range of motion in her right shoulder and in her ability to sleep at night without pain.
  • Following the second session, the client reports significant improvement in the discomfort in her right arm and shoulder.
  • She is now able to sleep on her right side without discomfort and waking up at night.
  • Following the third session, the arm pain is minimal, numbness and tingling in the fingers and hands has resolved, and sleep is normalized.
  • The client will continue with maintenance work every 4-6 weeks as needed.