Re: Sciatica in left leg now in left arm !!
just a wee lil FYI here tony, but it really is impossible to actually have real 'sciatica' in any area BUT the lower extremities only because it simply IS what is called the "sciatic nerve' that causes it, and that S nerve only runs from inner buttock area/kinda out to the hip on down, on the backside of the legs(you have a sciatic nerve running down each leg) that generates true sciatica, but i DO 'get' what you mean by what you are saying.
what you just 'could' have there may involve your c spine in some way, which would be called having 'radiculopathic symptoms", not sciatic symptoms, just so you know? but one OTHER possible here too esp since you stated you are NOT having ANY real numbness or tingling could be an actual rotator cuff problem within your shoulder too? when the rotator is simply involved in some way, believe me, since all the actual c spine nerves just have to run thru that very same area, it CAN 'mimic' c spine involvement, which it did to me too.
all my L sided "radiculopathic symptoms", which were mostly alot of pain running to just barely down my L arm, over my shoulder area TO/down the arm then stopped and soreness i simply attributed to my messed up c spine and severe stenosis on my c 5 6 on the L too(no actual numbness or tingling then either) but given the absolute mess we found in my R rotator later, my ortho thinks my L rot is probably pretty bad too. but later on, my R side went even MORE crazy and i also have had other more severe R sided c spine related problems(herniations degenerative processes and two seperate c spine surgeries) that i honestly assumed was more related to just some of the ongoing DDD i had among other actual "still there' c spine problems, but also just the basic 'residual crap" we tend to feel post op with most any surgery and sometimes for many years. so i did kind of blow it off? it was not til my very TOP tendon called the supraspinatus simply totally 'snapped in half' one fine morning(all i did was lift like a maybe 7 lb purse off the very top of my fridge and this happened) and i immediately lost my lift ROM(had to just drop that purse in mid lift) along with very sudden and immediate pain just killing that whole top thru upper arm area too that i finally saw my primary who upon 'trying to" run me thru ROMS which either did NOT go that way anymore, or created soo much pain, he just sent me for the needed MRI which showed ALOT of overall wear and tear and a very snapped in half and retracted supra too. it seriously was a real mess in there of a TON of abuse from things i did for my jobs and a ton of years of sports too, namely softball..
that very top tendon in our rotator cuff areas simply takes a TON of ongoing wear and tear and a daily basis just using it at all(its also THE MOST commonly torn of ALL the rotator tendons just from the ongoing lifetime abuse that hits THAT tendon first with most movements we do). but if you ever played, or even still play ANY types of sports that require the whole entire use of that shoulder, or repetitive movements that you just can feel any level of real soreness or inflammation from AFTER that particular "task' gets done, or even during it(like in having to just stop and kind of shake it off or even just massage your arm or anything else that stops what you are doing), the chances of this actually being rotator related just goes wayy up too.
any 'good" orthosurgeon CAN tell if you just have any actual mechanical deficiencies/loss of ROMs by doing a very indepth type of hands on, move in ALL the many many ROMS that our shoulders simply 'do, that would be able to tell whether or not this IS a possible rotator involved issue. at least somewhat ruling this in or out and pointing more towards your possible c spine levels instead. but most types of rotator issues, which i never knew this either, actually have NO numbess or even some tingling, esp down to fingers(but depending upon depth of injury, some just can/do just a little) when it IS a rotator problem as opposed to what the usual radiculopathic types of real c spine issues will tend to 'present like WITH some tingling which can lead to total numbness over time and progression, but both 'issues DO include pain. but radicu from spinal generally is more of a 'running down at least part of arm or even to fingers pain, and with possilbe electrical zingers or other 'feelings', while rotator is more mostly all invloved 'within' that shoulder level area with a ton of soreness and generalized pain and hypersensitivity to touch along with losses of partial losses of ROMs depending upon how much or what real tendon(among other structures that also allow us movement that can become damaged or torn too) are being impacted or torn over time too. but your symptoms sound like they stay more within that area and NOT radiate down and without any numbing either.
but looking at this 'as a c spine possible' there 'could be an issue up there too that had not yet fully shown itself with any real level of nerve entrapment from stenosis or herniation/bone spurring, which just are kind of the more commonly seen things that will impact any level of real nerve, and would eventually generate numbness and tingling when it gets impacted enough over time.
but the only REAL way, esp with no numbeness or even tingling going on there, to really tell what just may be the main real generator here would take at the VERY LEAST, some type of in depth scanning to see whats going on inside your body in both areas. even a CT done on that rotator cuff FIRST would be very helpful in just seeing the inner structures and would NOT require a full on MRI, where trying to obtain the very BEST inside down to the cord look at your c spine would have to be with an MRI right now. if you had ANY numbness here, it at least could be(the involved nerves) tracked back to the generator with whats called an EMG/NCV. this will ONLY work really if there just IS a really heavy level of numbing or posistional at the time of test numbness or possible deeper tingling. that is why even getting that CT on that rotator would either rule THAT in or out as what is generating your very 'closed in' types of ongoing symptoms up there. it just would be more likely based upon what you stared that this just 'could be' more of a possible rotator than c spine, at THIS particular point anyways.
this IS of course my own opinion, simply having had both severe ongoing c spine crappy stuff along with also having very damaged/involved rotator cuff involvement too that did require a rather impactful surgery to fix, only becasue i allowed that supra to snap in half just thinking that what i had been feeling in THAT soecific area HAD to be only my c spine stuff, again, when it was sooo not. but i WOULD see the ortho about this and if at all possible, simply get even a good contrasted CT done on the rotator on that pain side. it needs ruling in or out as the generator of what sounds like pretty common/classic rotator cuff type pain more than c spine to me anyways. tho people can present differently with any given type of body issue/damage. you just really need to be certain as to whether this is c spine or rotator right now just based upon symptoms. just speak with your ortho about this other possible here and see what he feels AFTER and only after he does whats needed by running you thru ALL of the many different ROMS of that rotator for YOUR response to each one, or if you can even just 'do" a particular one at all too. this just sounds more like one thing than the other to me tony. and like i said above? mimicing certain symptoms just becasue particular nerves 'happen to' also run thru an area does not mean that they ARE generating FROM the base in the spinal too. i hope this helped you and did not confuse you more,lol. i HAVE done that in the past. just get on top of your ortho and DO please keep me posted. marcia
11-20-01,placement of hardware for failed fusion
9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.