Stabbing pain

Hi Hope someone can shed some light on this for me Last Saturday I woke up with a stabbing pain on top of my head. It wasn’t all the time and would go for a few hrs and then suddenly it would feel like a hammer to my head that lasted a split second. The pain at times feels like a burn on the top and towards my neck. It’s also sore to the touch at times yet there is nothing there to see or feel. I’ve had a look at the forum and wondered wether it was trigeminal neuralgia but this affects the 5th cranial nerve which relates more to the forehead and jaw and I’ve no pain there. Another weird thing today was when I went to the gym. I really pushed myself and heart was pounding and I was puffing away and the pain went. it also goes in the shower when the hot water is on my head. I’ve restarted my pregabalin at 25mg bs and will up the dose to 50mg tmrw. I’m on avonex and due to inject in the morning before I go to work All info greatly received Lesley

This is from wikipedia:

Innervation is the connection of nerves to the scalp: the sensory and motor nerves innervating the scalp. The scalp is innervated by the following:

  • Supratrochlear nerve and the supraorbital nerve from the ophthalmic division of the trigeminal nerve
  • Greater occipital nerve posteriorly up to the vertex
  • Lesser occipital nerve behind the ear
  • Zygomaticotemporal nerve from the maxillary division of the trigeminal nerve supplying the hairless temple
  • Auriculotemporal nerve from the mandibular division of the trigeminal nerve

If your pain is at the back, then it looks like it’s the greater occipital nerve that’s causing it.

I would guess that it goes when you are exercising or showering because the brain is otherwise occupied and hasn’t the resources left to pay attention to the “fake” signals that nerve is causing. Distraction can be a really useful thing for dealing with pain - the brain is amazing, but it is limited - give it something else to do, and it detracts from pain.


Karen x

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Hi Lesley, I suffer this pain at times and have no answer reason for it. I find even if Im busy I can still get it. I agree with what you say about it and you have helped me out , will look more at what you and others have said, many thanks Sherbet.

Hi Lesley

I have had this-or similar-since Nov. I convinced myself it was my skin as I have had mega skin problems before. But it feels as if its ‘in’ my bones-not on surface. I cant touch my head at all when its happening. Have also had similar pain in face/jaw. I take 2 and half times dose of Amytriptyline one night then ordinary dose alternately-its controlled the pain so far. I only take 2 drugs-Amytrip and LDN so dunno re pregabalin.

Hope you get relief soon!

Ellie x

Thanks everyone for your comments. I registered only today on this site as I have been experiencing some of these same symptoms over the last 3 days. Not that I want anyone to feel this discomfort but it does help to know that others are dealing with it and have some answers.

Hi, I was diagnosed with RRMS in 2005 after 2 big relapses within 3 months of each other. My first was optic neuritis and my second one was head pains which turned into spasms affecting my speech and left side. Now my second relapse started with sharp stabbing head pains, which were like being hit on the head with an icepick, you may have seen this term used for this type of pain. However, these pains although short lived became more frequent to the point where I was having around 5 or 6 every hour! And as the frequency grew so did the symptoms that came with them. Starting off with just the sharp stabbing pains, but then things changed and during the pain my speech would slur and I’d lose control of my complete right side for around 10 mins. I was hospitalised and treated with iv steroids and gabapentin. My new mri showed an increase in lesions from the one I had just 3 months before, but my neuro had not seen symptoms like these before so I was kept in for 2 week! Since then, I’ve had the pains particularly when I’m stressed, but I always remember to mention them to my neuro when I see him. I don’t get many pains at the moment, fingers crossed they wont be returning like before ever again. See your gp in the first instance as ordinary paracetamol is a waste of time for this type of pain & hopefull he will write to your neuro and start you on some meds to help. Fingers crossed your pains are short lived and you recover. Feel free to PM me if you want to know more. Sharon.

Yes I get the stabbing pains in my head they are weird. Just suddenly and i will clutch my head. I do have Optical Neuritis just coming out of an attack but not sure if it was down to that. It comes and goes, and i just ignore it now.

When my stabbing pains come I try to de-stress myself so they are fairly short lived. :slight_smile: