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Upper Arm Muscle Pain

Medha Godbole
Pain in the upper arm is a common problem faced by a lot of people all over the world. But it is nothing to worry about, as with a little bit of care, stretching and medication, this condition can be effectively dealt with.
If you ask what are the most common areas where pain is experienced by us, one of them has to be the arm. There too, it is the upper arm where most of the time, pain is felt.
There is nothing shocking or surprising about this fact, considering the amount of strain our arms have to withstand consciously or subconsciously, be it lugging the grocery, to exercising or any physical activity or pushing or pulling something that is very heavy; no wonder it leads to exertion of the arm eventually leading to excruciating pain.


The given symptoms may differ or vary slightly, depending on the severity of the injury or the cause. Nevertheless, there are some common symptoms to affirm if there is pain in the upper arm muscles.
  • Dull ache to a sharp, burning sensation lasting for at least 2 days.
  • Swelling of arm and if there is an injury, there is prominence of bruises.
  • Difficulty in flexing or moving your arm.
  • The pain is persistent and worsens if you try to lift anything or exercise.
  • Significant loss of strength is observed.
  • If the pain is in the left arm and is coupled with shortness of breath and chest pain, it could be a heart attack.



Indulging excessively in exercise that strain your arms, can lead to soreness and severe pain. Also, if you do not warm up properly before playing a sport or undergoing strenuous workout, that focuses on hands and arms, it could lead to a muscle pull and sometimes to ligament and muscle tear.


Falling on your arm or getting hit by something, can definitely cause muscle pain. In addition to that if you lift something really heavy, it can lead to injury. Fractures for instance, cause pain for several months in spite of healing.

Muscle Disorders:

Tendonitis, myalgia, and a few other problems can surely lead to arm pain. In some cases, peripheral neuropathy, brachial plexus injury and heartburn can lead to upper right arm pain. Sometimes, compression of blood vessels of arm neck and shoulder can cause and aggravate the pain.

Heart Attack:

If you are experiencing pain which is not due to the above mentioned reasons, consult your physician; and if the pain is accompanied by feeling of nausea, chest pain or breathlessness, then rush to ER immediately.


Higher and Higher:

Elevating your upper arm will do the trick. While you are resting it, raise it to the level of your chest. Prop up your hand on a couple of fluffy pillows if you are sitting on a couch.

Cool it:

For any kind of muscle or joint pain, ice compress always works and so does a heating pad. Apply an ice pack and keep it on the injured area for around 10 to 15 minutes. Do this through the day, at regular intervals.

Go Slow:

You obviously cannot stop all the activities but you can surely spread the task out. Take breaks in between and do not put too much strain on your arm.

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If there is no deformity and the pain is not severe, just resting that arm will do the needful. This is the easiest treatment that works, unless the discomfort is too severe.
After reading all these causes and their treatment, I am sure you would be able to deal with this problem in a better way! If the need arises, do consult your physician for pain relieving medication. Take care!
Disclaimer: This story is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.