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Thread: Terribly sore shoulders from using power chair - how can I help?

  1. #1
    Senior Member zillazangel's Avatar
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    May 2004
    North Carolina, USA

    Terribly sore shoulders from using power chair - how can I help?

    My s.o. has a ribbon switch in his headrest that he has to use to change modes on his chair (e.g. to park, recline, move forward/backward, etc). He uses it constantly and has for 16+ years. But in the last few days, the muscles in his right shoulder, the side he uses to flick the ribbon switch with his head, is MASSIVELY painful and seized up. His muscles there are just one great big huge knot, and I mean a knot. I tried like heck to rub out the knots two nights ago and only succeeded (I think) in making it worse! It was so painful later than night that he was awake all night in pain (despite strong painkillers) and had to miss work the next day because of no sleep and the pain.

    Any advice out there on what I/we can do to loosen up his shoulders? We put heating packs on it all day yesterday and he said that helped some, but I think he's still in alot more pain than he is letting on. I feel so helpless because I'm afraid that massaging it out will cause it to seize up more like it did the other night.

    Suggestions, ideas?

    Zillazangel, I am an able bodied significant other of a C4/5 quadriplegic man

  2. #2
    I have alot of neck problems due to a car accident when I was a kid and my neck does this once or twice a year. The only thing that helps me is going to the doctor and getting muscle relaxers (Soma is the one I take) and pain killers and it loosens everything up. When it's in spasm that bad massaging it can make it spasm even worse so be careful there. It gets better alot faster and makes it more tolerable in the meantime.

    Hope this helps.


  3. #3
    You might want to post this in the Care forum also.

    C5/6 incomplete, injured Aug. 2000

  4. #4
    See his physiatrist and get an Rx for PT or OT massage/trigger point therapy if he/she agrees.

    I am locking this here. Please reply further on the duplicate post on the Care forum.


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