Here is My Question:
I've been experiencing pain on my right side of face. Starts in my cheek area, up to temple and forehead, eyebrow area and into my scalp. Is not a deep pain but hurts if I touch my skin, my hair even hurts. I get a sharp pain in my temple area that feels like an ice pick and can feel it in my ear. It's going on 4 days now, interrupting sleep because it causes discomfort if anything touches my face. Any ideas for me?
You should be evaluated by a physician about this concern. Allodynia (neuropathic pain to touch) can originate from many different potential causes. If there is a rash (and sometimes even without a rash) it could be due to a virus such as VZV (zoster/shingles). If VZV is to blame, prompt treatment is very important to prevent potentially serious neurologic complications (particularly when it involves the forehead). MS can be manifest by trigeminal neuralgia; however, your description is atypical for this. Atypical facial pain can occur as well, but would require further evaluation by your doctor. Sometimes symptomatic medicine can help allodynia (including gabapentin, pregabalin, amitriptyline, etc). Your physician can discuss this with you in more detail.
A. Scott Nielsen MD MMSc
Neurologist and MS Specialist at Kaiser Permanente
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