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Repetitive Strain Injury/Nasty pain in shoulder area due to trapped nerve


Hi Julie

7 days ago I awoke at 2.00am from pain in the middle of my right deltoid. The pain got worse throughout the night until it was severe. I booked myself into the see my GP first thing the following day. They told me I had a trapped nerve and prescribed Codeine. 7 days later there is no let up, the pain is just as bad. I have trouble lifting my hand higher than my shoulder it feels very weak and painful. The pain has spread down the outside of the upper arm as well.
I think I have Repetitive Strain Injury to my neck muscle which are pinching the nerve than runs through them. The muscles I think are called Scalene and SCM. The nerve comes from c5.
I think RSi because I sit at a PC all day for work and I have also been fitness/strength training quite intensively recently which I think tipped the RSI over the edge.
Also it feels very tender to put pressure on my flesh just abover the collar bone.
I can hardly work in this state so I need to do something about it. Please do you have any suggestions? It is agony!
If I a wrong in what i say please tell me.

many thanks
London, England

Hi Charles,

I think you are absolutely correct, especially about your scalenes.  Another muscle that can be causing this problem is your pectoralis minor because it pulls your shoulder forward (using your mouse and typing) and when it is tight and you are trying to bring your arm back, you put pressure on the nerves that go to your arm and hand, plus you may also have burning pain in the middle of your shoulders. Your biceps can also be causing the problem because the short head of the muscle originates on the same bone as the pectoralis minor, so tight biceps (from keeping your arm bent for hours at a time) will put pressure on the nerves to your arm and hand.

If you go to you can read about each of the muscles by going to the Anatomy Lessons page, and you'll also find out how to learn to self-treat each of the muscles from your neck to your hand. ng.

If you go to you can read why repetitive strain will cause muscle and nerve pain.  I suggest you read the sections titled "Muscles and Pain" and "What Happens Exactly." Two other muscles I'd look at is your subclavius (under your collarbone), and your pectoralis major as it inserts close to where I believe you are describi

I believe you'll be able to eliminate these problems, it's just a matter of knowing exactly which muscles to self-treat and where the exact point is located in the muscle.  It's not hard.

Wishing you well,
   Julie Donnelly

Repetitive Strain Injury

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Julie Donnelly, LMT


I can accept questions that relate to chronic or acute pain caused by muscle spasms and contractions. Repetitive Strain Injury is actually Cumulative Trauma to muscles. Releasing the spasm &/or contraction will relieve the strain that is felt at the insertion point on the bone. I am the co-developer of the unique safe-stretching program "Focused Flexibility Training," which combines easy instruction for self-treating spasms throughout your body with proven yoga stretches. I have recently authored two new books: "The 15 Minute Back Pain Solution," and "The Secret to Your Best Golf Game EVER!


Since 1989 I have been working with endurance athletes and individuals suffering from chronic pain conditions. I have authored seven self-treatment books and three self-treatment DVDs and I have developed the Julstro System for the treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome, Trigger Finger, and other Hand/Wrist pain. I am a national and international presenter at conventions, seminars, and workshops. Principle topics are "Work Shouldn't Hurt," and "The Pain Free Athlete." In 2005 and 2006 I was the massage therapist for ultracyclists competing in the Race Across America (RAAM) 3000+ mile race from San Diego, CA to Atlantic City, NJ. I've taught the Julstro techniques to physical therapists at the Cleveland Clinic, to massage therapists in areas around the USA, and I've taught Julstro self-treatment clinics to dancers at Juilliard School of Performing Arts (NYC),the sprinting team at NC State, and I am working closely with several Olympic-hopeful. We have successfully eliminated the repetitive strain injuries that could keep them out of the Olympic Games, and the best part is they know how to do the self-treatments so they can stay pain-free and flexible.

Triathlete Magazine, Endurance Magazine, multiple national and international trade journals.

Swedish Institute of Allied Health, NY, NY - Initial education in massage therapy Licensed NYS Massage Therapist since 1989. SUNY Empire State College, Saratoga Springs, NY - B.Sc. degree in Interdisciplinary Health Education I was an Associate Professor helping to develop the massage training program for SUNY Rockland Community College

Past/Present Clients
Privacy prevents me from filling in this section without prior consent from my clients. Life Experience: I have been specializing in the treatment of chronic pain and sports injuries since receiving my NY massage license in 1989. A personal bout with carpal tunnel syndrome was the catalyst to my developing a self-treatment that heals the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome quickly and without surgery. My work with endurance athletes was the inspiration to teach people how to self-treat so they could stop pains even during a race or heavy training day. Both of these situations ultimately became the products that are sold on my websites: and I currently treat people in my offices in Sarasota, FL, Cary, NC, or Pearl River, NY

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