Polymyalgia Rheumatica: The Inflammatory Disorder

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Man having shoulder pain problem
Got inflammation? Unfortunately, almost everyone experiences an inflammatory disorder at some point in their lifetime. When the body develops any kind of inflammation, the result can be stiffness, redness, swelling, chronic pain, or damage to normal tissues. This occurs because the cells or tissues of the body are being attacked by the immune system. One inflammatory disorder that has the potential to be harmful is Polymyalgia Rheumatica (PMR).

What is Polymyalgia Rheumatica?

This inflammatory disorder affects the muscles and joints, and is characterized by muscle pain and stiffness. Both sides of the body are affected, and the majority of patients complain of pain in the shoulders although the arms, neck, and buttock.

The exact cause of PMR is unknown. Researchers have concluded that genetic factors may play a role and that it can even be environmental. This suggests that a trigger, such as a virus, might cause PMR, but that specific virus has not yet been identified. The environmental exposure became an indicator because Polymyalgia Rheumatica tends to appear in cycles, similar to seasons.


  • Stiffness: mostly in the morning or after an extended period of being inactive
  • Aches or pain in the neck, buttocks, hips, thighs, or upper arms
  • Limited range of motion in the affected area
  • Unintended weight loss
  • Fatigue
  • Mild fever
  • General feeling of being unwell
  • Loss of appetite


In cases where a patient is experiencing mild symptoms, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are recommended. These include aspirin or ibuprofen. But most patients respond best to low doses of steroid medications, such as prednisone or prednisolone.

After being prescribed a steroid medication, the patient should start to feel pain and stiffness relief after two or three days. Once two to four weeks have passed, the physician will likely start to decrease the dosage depending on test results and symptoms. A majority of people affected will continue a steroid treatment for one year with frequent follow-up appointments to monitor the disorder and treatment.


If you are experiencing a pain or stiffness on both sides of your body, it is important to see a health professional immediately. The further this inflammatory disorder progresses without medical help, the worse it can get. Contact IMS Pain Management todayto get your pain under control!

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