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What does nerve pain feel like.

I’m just wondering if any of you delightful people can tell me what nerve pain feel like in your legs? I don’t know if what I’m feeing is nerve pain and would like an idea of the typical symptoms of it. Does it last a long time? Does it come on suddenly? Etc etc, thank you.

Hi,

I’m afraid there is no “typical” nerve pain. Nerve pain is caused by misfirings or garbled signals in the nervous system, and what the brain makes of it can depend on both the individual, and the type of bad data that is coming through. Tingling, burning, itching or electrical-type sensations are quite commonly associated with nerve pain, but these are just examples - it’s not necessarily always like that. Sometimes the only way to tell if something is nerve pain or not is to try a painkiller especially for it (sometimes called a neuropathic painkiller), and see if it helps or not.

Not all MS pain is nerve pain. Musculo-skeletal pain is also possible (from altered gait, poor balance, muscle stiffness etc.) Musculo-skeletal pain typically WILL respons to over-the-counter painkilers, like paracetamol, ibuprofen, or codeine, whereas nerve pain will not.

So one test, without going to the doctor, is whether anything you can buy without prescription touches it. If it does, you are probably not dealing with a case of nerve pain, but you may still need a prescription for painkillers, as it gets both expensive and impractical to keep having to buy them long term, as the law only allows such small quantities at once. I pay for my prescriptions, but it still works out cheaper to get ibuprofen, cocodamol etc. that way, because I can get a much larger supply at once.

Although most painkillers say you should only take them for three or four days, it’s safe to take most of them indefinitely, as long as you’re being supervised and monitored by a doctor.

Another class of drugs that may sometimes help, even though they’re not painkillers, is muscle relaxants. If pain is caused by the muscles getting too tight, anything that eases that may also relieve the pain. I take baclofen for spasticity, and quinine for cramps. Although neither of these is a painkiller, they have relieved pain overall.

Tina