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Question from Bobbi of Los Angeles, California

I was diagnosed with pneumonia four days ago and have been taking erythromycin since. I have been having severe pain in the left, upper side of my back, around my shoulder blade which is not getting better. Would this be related to the pneumonia? Is there any thing I can do about it? Should it be improving faster than this?

Dear Bobbi:

Shoulder area pain can certainly be a sign of pneumonia. Obviously, the shoulder should be on the same side of the body as the pneumonia. Pain medications, antibiotics, and time are the treatments of choice. Pneumonia can take many days to heal.

Please consult your doctor if you are worsening.

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