Nerve pain

What is neuropathic pain or nerve pain?

Nerve pain, because a nerve is primarily affected or is near other affected tissue. Pain is often poorly localized, infrequent, hard to describe (cold, heat, tearing, tension, needles, oppressive, tense) and may persist even after it's cause has apparently disappeared (for example scar pain after surgery on the breast, lung or inguinal hernia).

Why is it important to know what neuropathic pain is

Because it often persists even after the injury that caused it has healed and it can be hard for family, friends, coworkers or even doctors to understand or empathize with your pain. Knowing exactly what ails you is the first step to doing something about it.

Why does a herpes so much hurt?

Precisely because one or more nerves are inflamed, usually in the ribs but any nerve of the body is susceptible (eye, face, leg, arm). It is very important to lessen the pain as soon as possible to prevent our brain from "memorizing" too much pain. Therefore, if the medications you have received are not working very well, you should consult a pain expert. An expert will be able to give you further information, help you find the most suitable treatment and help prevent the pain from becoming chronic. Unfortunately however, it is difficult sometimes to avoid the occurrence of postherpetic neuralgia, or the persistence of pain long after the herpes blisters have healed. The likelihood of neuralgia is higher in the elderly and the immunocompromised (people with low defenses).

I am a diabetic and I feel a burning pain in my legs. What can I do?

Diabetes is another cause of nerve inflammation. There are several ways diabetes pain can manifest itself but the most common is a burning pain and numbness in the bottom half of the leg. Fortunately, keeping your diabetes under control prevents the pain from occurring or if it already has, delays or prevents further deterioration.

Why was I given antidepressants to treat my pain?

There has been considerable success in the use of low-dose antidepressants (without antidepressant effect) in the treatment of neuropathic pain. They are especially useful in controlling oppressive, tense or continuous pain.

At low doses there are few side effects but the most frequent are drowsiness and dry mouth. The most common medication prescribed is Amitriptyline

Why was I given antiepileptics to treat my pain?

Antiepileptics are another family of drugs that have proved useful in the treatment of neuropathic pain. For many years we have used Tegretol (carbamazepine) for the treatment of trigeminal neuralgia. There is now a new generation of antiepileptic drugs that have fewer side effects and are equally effective.

What is a Lidocaine infusion?

Lidocaine is a drug with various applications such as local anesthesia or the treatment of cardiac arrhythmias. Because of how it lessens nerve excitability, it is used for the treatment of neuropathic pain and is administered into the blood stream.

Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Syndrome

I broke my hand three weeks ago and my whole arm is swollen with pain and has changed color and temperature. What is happening to me?

There is evidence that direct injury to a nerve or the surrounding area may trigger a neurovascular disorder, where arteries, veins and nerves are all affected. The symptoms include swelling of the affected extremity (hand, arm, foot and leg), color and temperature changes, pain and progressive immobility. Sometimes the trigger is a minor trauma. Early diagnosis of this syndrome is highly recommended so pain relief and rehabilitation sessions can be started as soon as possible in the hopes of preventing stiffness and ultimately the possible loss of limb function.