What Causes Underarm Pain?


Quick Answer

Underarm pain can be caused by sports injuries, nerve entrapment, viral infections, benign cysts, minor skin irritation, muscle strain, fibromyalgia, overuse, abscesses, surgery, bone fractures and cellulitis, according to Healthgrades. Underarm pain may indicate the presence of serious health complications such as angina, cancerous tumors and deep vein thrombosis.

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What Causes Underarm Pain?
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Full Answer

The occurrence of underarm pain does not necessarily imply the pain originates at the site of the discomfort, explains Healthgrades. Some conditions located elsewhere in the body cause pain in the underarms, such as with heart complications. Treatments and recovery times vary depending on the cause of a person's underarm pain. Mild cases may only require rest and ice application while taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications to manage any accompanying pain.

Serious causes of underarm pain may take longer to heal and could require medical intervention, such as surgery, medications or physical therapy. Underarm pain can manifest with a range of symptoms, including tenderness, lumps, tingling in the arms or hands, swelling, redness, difficulty moving, bruising and muscle weakness, notes Healthgrades. People are encouraged to visit a doctor to assess underarm pain and accompanying symptoms. If a person experiences chest pain, heart palpitations, difficulty breathing, sudden pain in the arm, chest tightness or heavy bleeding, it is important to obtain emergency medical care as soon as possible.

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