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Headache, Burning Pain on Tongue, Side of Faceand Scalp, Fatigue
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Headache, Burning Pain on Tongue, Side of Faceand Scalp, Fatigue

(I'm putting this in the general health category bc I have no idea what this is)
I am a 42-yr-old mom of a 3-yr old with a 60-hr/week, very stressful job. Five days ago I developed a burning pain on the right side of my neck and the top of my left thigh. The next day the burning pain had spread to the right side of my face, nose and, by yesterday, to my scalp. Today my entire tongue is burning (not just the right side) all the way to the back of my throat. My left thigh stopped burning a couple of days ago. The day after the burning pain started, I started suffering from a low-grade fever, loss of appetite, extreme exhaustion and such dizziness that I can't remain vertical for longer than a few hours w/o needing to lie down for several hours. I have also started getting a severe dull headache that feels like it is going through the center of my head. I saw my doc yesterday and she seems to think that it can't be the onset of shingles --even though it does sound like it-- bc I'd have gotten the rash by now. She also ruled out Bell's Palsy but thinks it may still be something neurological. She is out today and tomorrow and doesn't know about the tongue and the headache bc the tonge pain started today and I forgot to mention the persistant headaches at our appointment. She told me to call her service if I develop blisters. I still do not have any blisters anywhere but I am getting a little alarmed at the spreading of the burning pain. I have been pregnant twice (one m/c) and the exhaustion I felt in my first trimester both times was nothing compared to what I've felt these past couple of days. Also, the burning pain on the side of my face seems to worsen as the day wears on --from nearly undetectable in the morning to quite severe by bedtime. My right eye also feels slightly rheumy.

Could this be some kind of blister-less case of shingles? If it's neurological, what could it be? I have to admit I am a little scared. I can't find anything like this on the internet and no one I know is suffering from this so I don't think it's some weird form of flu or virus. I would very much appreciate your thoughts/advice.

Thank You.
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233190_tn?1278553401
Shingles and Bell's Palsy are certainly possibility.  Some of the  neurological discomfort can occur before the onset of blisters in early cases.  

Temporal arteritis can also be considered - which can also involve the eye.  

For further evaluation, one can empirically treat for shingles with antivirals if this is suspected.  If temporal arteritis is suspected, a blood test for the sedimentation rate can be considered.

However, given the multiple neurologic complaints, I would discuss whether a more thorough evaluation - including an cranial MRI and MRA of the neck - would be in order.

You can discuss these options with your personal physician or in conjunction with a neurology referral.

Followup with your personal physician is essential.

This answer is not intended as and does not substitute for medical advice - the information presented is for patient education only. Please see your personal physician for further evaluation of your individual case.

Kevin, M.D.
http://www.straightfromthedoc.com
4 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
I am a 42 year old women and I to am having pretty much the same problem. Except for the side of my face, I have the burning on my
tongue, fatgue, and headaches on tne left side of my head. it some-
times feels like my tongue is swellon up and I almost can't swallow.
The burning on my tongue actually wakes me up at night some times along with the headache.My gums are feeling kind of burnish feeling to. What's really strange is I had a tooth pulled about 4 months ago and right were that tooth was pulled I have the worst pain and burning. I really don't understand. I am and always have been very clean and always strict about using mouth wash and brushing my teeth.About 3weeks ago I got what I thought was a cold sore on the left corner of my mouth ,something I had never had before. I finally got that to go away and like 4 days later I got this what I
I thought was a canker sore on my tongue, it's been there for 2 weeks now and I can't get it to go away. now I have had a canker sore before and they only last a day or two, after adding a little salt to it ( burns a little ) ,but it work's.I am very concerned and will be seeing my doctor.I really did not know this could be a
sign of shingle. thank you .
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Avatar_n_tn
I am a 42 year old women and I to am having pretty much the same problem. Except for the side of my face, I have the burning on my
tongue, fatgue, and headaches on tne left side of my head. it some-
times feels like my tongue is swellon up and I almost can't swallow.
The burning on my tongue actually wakes me up at night some times along with the headache.My gums are feeling kind of burnish feeling to. What's really strange is I had a tooth pulled about 4 months ago and right were that tooth was pulled I have the worst pain and burning. I really don't understand. I am and always have been very clean and always strict about using mouth wash and brushing my teeth.About 3weeks ago I got what I thought was a cold sore on the left corner of my mouth ,something I had never had before. I finally got that to go away and like 4 days later I got this what I
I thought was a canker sore on my tongue, it's been there for 2 weeks now and I can't get it to go away. now I have had a canker sore before and they only last a day or two, after adding a little salt to it ( burns a little ) ,but it work's.I am very concerned and will be seeing my doctor.I really did not know this could be a
sign of shingle. thank you .
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Avatar_n_tn
Hello, I was thinking perhaps there is a pinched nerve in the neck and a trip to a well rounded chiropractor could help relieve this problem.... Don't let them crack you neck but some intense deep tissue therapy could be the answer...
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Avatar_n_tn
Dear Letty;

My husband has had this debilitating "Symdrome" for 6+ years. Read up on "Burning Mouth Syndrome". It can start with a visit to the dentist or menopausal women. Men can have it too. There are no age, or socio-economic or hereditary factors that influence this illness. Reserch has been done but is scarce. Doctors virtually have never heard of it.....But many dentists have confirmed that patients often complain of "Burning Tongues" Read up on "Phantom Pain"...........Its real. My hubby has seen 37 specialists in 6+ years ..7 antidepressants, Anti-acid treatmensts...the list is endless. Finally docs say "its in your head"...

I just wish you the best in understanding of your symptoms and managing the pain

Good Luck
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Avatar_m_tn
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