What happened? Tricep/pec atrophy & strength loss

  1. Question What happened? Tricep/pec atrophy & strength loss

    Back story, I'm an active 29 y/o Male, with 7+ years of dedicated lifting. Only injury (no current pain) is bulging l5-s1. I also have body-wide muscle fasciculations that developed with my lower back injury, 2 years ago (don't get stuck on this like the Dr's did.)

    Supplements at the time: Creatine, beta-alanine, multis, egg protein.

    Last October I began getting a burning/stinging pain in my right scapula, while sitting at work. Around the same time my right tricep would painlessly "stick" if I flexed it (think of a charlie horse w/no pain.) The scapula began burning non-stop for about 2-3 weeks before the pain totally went away.

    That's where the fun starts; once the pain subsided I lost 80% of my strength in my right tricep/pec overnight. I log all of my lifts, and that arm became useless for any pressing movements.

    Shortly after my tricep and pec developed major atrophy.

    I went to the doctor, and was referred for a nerve conduction study. Everything came back clear, no nerve impingement. They looked at a MRI from 2 months before the burning began, and noticed a little bulging in my c7 I think it was. They also confirmed no ALS/MS.

    The Dr's had no answer, so I just hit the weights harder, adding extra sets/days to the injured side.

    At the 7 month point, I finally caught up to my pre-injury lifting #'s, and my tricep and pec have regained about 75% of its fullness. And now at 8 months my #'s continue to climb, and am stronger than ever.

    So my question is, has anyone else been through anything like this? Why couldn't the Dr's find a source, or give me an answer? Was this a one time thing, or do I get to watch my hard earned gains disappear overnight again?

    Thanks for any and all insight!

  2. Idk sounds like upper motor neuron signs, these are usually diagnosed via exclusion (ruling out other conditions), hopeully just a one time gig good luck mate and good job getting those gains back!

  3. Definitely sounds like impingement! I recommend you to assess your rotator cuff, especially subscapularis. If it's dysfunctional, may cause extreme tightness (due to compensation) of teres major and lats. In turn it can cause a lot of problems even in untrained individuals.

    If your internal rotation muscle test is significantly weak, this may be a valid option. Also check for tightness in pec minor and scalenes. I had one client like this who also experienced muscle wasting and numbness/paralyzation, and the rotator cuff + breathing pattern was the culprit (chronic tightness)

    My client is completely healed now. I'm not saying this IS your problem but that it's definitely worth a check, and that the prognosis may be good.

    Hope this helps mate!

  4. Thanks for the responses so far guys! Definitely gives me some new avenues to explore.

  5. I have something similar happen. I didn't lose 80% of my strength but there was definitely a difference in what I could rep with each arm.
    I'd also recommend getting your rotator cuff checked out ASAP and bring down the volume and weights for a little bit. You don't want to end up training to long with a tear and keep yourself out of the gym longer. I tore my rotator cuff back when I played baseball and jjust played through it. I wish I hadn't whenever I get a pain there now I'm always paranoid it's gunna come back. You also don't want to be dropping bills every few months on an MRI to get it checked out.
    I've heard good things about ostarine and it's ability to heal the joints. I'm using it for the first time in pct and it's helping me hold onto gains but I cannot personally vouch for what it could do for you... Best of luck man try and heal up fast so you can get back in the gym!



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