Pain in different parts of my body
For a few months, I have been experiencing pain in different parts of my body including my limbs, back and head. I haven’t injured myself and the pain seems to move around. For example one day, my buttock was so painful I couldn’t sit down but the following day it was fine. A week ago, I had difficulty walking because of a pain in my left leg, from the calf to the top of my thigh. Two days later, the leg pain had gone but I couldn’t use the mouse with my right arm because of a pain that started on the left side of my neck and travelled across my neck and along my arm to my fingers.
I’ve had blood test and X-rays but they didn’t show up anything. I’m 38 and in general good health. I’m not overweight, I don’t smoke, don’t drink a lot and I work in an office in a job I enjoy. Do you have any idea of what the problem may be and who may be able to help?
6 JULY 2020
Last reviewed on 6 July 2020 by Nikki Porges, a registered nurse in our Health at Hand team.
The first thing that came to mind when I read about your problems is that you might have a low vitamin D level. I wonder if your doctor checked for this when you recently had blood tests?
Vitamin D deficiency can cause aches and pains in the bones. It’s caused by lack of sunlight on the skin and is a very common problem in the UK, especially after a long winter. Your doctor can do a blood test to confirm your vitamin D level and, if found to be low, replace it with tablets.
Make sure you take your lunch break outside the office to get at least 15 minutes of sunshine on your face and arms as this helps to boost vitamin D levels.
What did the X-ray of your wrists show? You need to find out this result and see your doctor again, to determine what the next step is.
In addition, I think it might be worth you asking your GP if your vitamin B12 levels were checked, particularly if you’re suffering from any symptoms of fatigue. This is because a combination of muscle aches and pains and fatigue can point to a deficiency of B12 in some people.
Overall, while there are a variety of conditions that could potentially be causing the symptoms you are having and, as explained vitamin D deficiency would sit at the top of the list to be checked, if your symptoms are mainly centred on joint and muscle pain that moves around this narrows the possibilities.
Any issue in the spine for example can cause related and referred pain into other parts of the body. An issue in the cervical (neck) spine can cause pain in the arms and hands and an issue in the lower back can lead to pains in the buttocks, legs, feet and calves as well.
Equally, any issue in the joints of the spine can cause related issues elsewhere. For example, if the upper spine is tensed and pinching on the nerves, the lower spine will try to adapt to the issue in the upper spine by a shift in position, which can then lead to symptoms, such as aches and pains lower in the body as the spine is essentially out of alignment. This can be particularly true if core strength is weak and someone is working at a desk all day with poor positioning, so this may be something to think about as well
That said I also feel particularly as you have ongoing pain in both of your wrists that you could benefit from a rheumatology opinion. A Rheumatologist specialises in disorders of the small bones of the body such as those found in the wrists, and inflammatory and degenerative conditions related to them, such as rheumatoid arthritis They also specialise in connective tissue disorders – these are the tissues that surround the muscles and bones of the body – and could cause the type of symptoms you have been having if there is an issue there.
To summarise, first steps would be to find out if your vitamin D and vitamin B12 levels were checked and, if not, you can ask your GP to check these for you. If the tests then come back normal but you continue to have these symptoms it would probably be worthwhile asking for a rheumatology opinion.
Answered by the Health at Hand team.
You may also be interested in…
Vitamin D deficiency symptoms and supplements – AXA Health