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Is This The MS Hug?
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Is This The MS Hug?

Hi Guys,
Sorry if this has been asked before but I wondered if I am experiencing the MS Hug.

I was under the belief that it took your breath away etc. but I googled burning in the torso and it come up with a definition of the MS Hug. So now I want your opinion?

I am experiencing waves of burning in and around my rib cage, like a banding type of burning sensation, it has been coming and going, it also affects my back around near my bra strap line and lower.. it feels like bad sunburn or scalding your self and then it goes and then it comes again.

I have as many of you know been experiencing what I either think is a flare or migraine? I have also been getting burning in my perineum.. and down through my groin and legs..

I am still trying to decide if to call the neurologist.

Thanks Guys.

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6 Comments Post a Comment
987762 tn?1331031553

I found this the other day thought you might get some valid information from it, MS Hugs real name is dysesthesia, i've got a few others about relieving it if you want.

Hope it helps.

645390 tn?1338558977
I have very similar sensations as you, and my neuro called it the MS hug. I think that is an irony, it is not like a "hug" I have ever had before.

Yes, I feel like a hot stick goes through my back (right where my bra clasps) and then I get squeezed all the way around. It is an awful feeling, and I am sorry you are experiencing it.

I would call your neurologist and let him/her know about this new symptom.

Thinking of you,

279234 tn?1363108849
I tried to find an old post of mine...but I couldn't. Rena answered me back with something similiar with this describing the MS hug. I think maybe you should call your doctor. The hug is linked usually to a c-spine lesions. Here is some info on the hug.
"When I had the “MS hug” the first time it came and went over the course of several weeks and ranged from an annoying pressure to abject pain. It sometimes went as high as my chest or as low as my waistline. It was sometimes very localized on one side and other times went all the way around my torso. It is truly one of the most annoying and painful symptoms that I have ever experienced.

Since I had this symptom before I was diagnosed with MS, I visited several doctors (two internists, an infectious disease doctor and an orthopedist) and received the following diagnoses:

Scoliosis (nothing like finding an unsuspected problem on the way to an MS diagnosis)
Intestinal infection (given a course of Cipro, which made me feel so bad that I temporarily forgot about the girdle-band pain)
Mitral valve prolapse (another new problem turned up on the way to MS)
Stress (no comment)
I have decided that whoever coined the term “MS hug” must have: a) never experienced this symptom; or b) had a really bad sense of humor. In my family, we refer to the feeling as the “grippies, “ which is more descriptive and less cloying, anyway.

How Common is the "MS Hug?"

This is hard to say. Up to 75% of people with MS will experience pain as a symptom, but statistics on the MS hug are difficult to find.

What Causes the "MS Hug?"

It is caused by a lesion on the spinal cord and is technically classified as a neuropathic pain called a “paresthesia,” which refers to any abormal sensation. The sensation itself is the result of tiny muscles between each rib (intercostal muscles) going into spasm. These muscles have the job of holding our ribs together, as well as keeping them flexible and aiding in movement, like forced expiration.

What Does It Feel Like?

Like many MS symptoms, the “MS hug” feels different for different people – it also feels different in the same people on different days or at different times of day. It can be:
As low as the waist or as high as the chest; rarely it can be felt as high as the shoulders and neck
Focused in one small area (usually on one side or in the back) or go all the way around the torso
Worse when fatigued or stressed
Present in “waves” lasting seconds, minutes or hours or can be steady for longer periods of time
Described as sharp pain, dull pain, burning pain, tickling, tingling, a crushing or constricting sensation or intense pressure

How Severe Can It Get?

Some people experience difficulty breathing or painful breathing, so severe that it is often perceived as a heart attack or panic attack.
What Medical Tests Will be Performed?
Your neurologist may want to run an MRI to see if you are having an exacerbation. Often, tests are also done to rule out other things, such as heart problems, gallbladder problems, lung disease, gastrointestinal disorders or inflammation of the cartilage between the ribs."
562511 tn?1285907760
You are STILL deciding whether or not to call the neurologist?  I guess that you haven't made your way to the urologist either?  

I hope that you will see your neurologist asap.  You are adding symptom upon symptom and not addressing them.  Something about all of this must be making you fearful.  

My concern is that you might find yourself in a state where you cannot deal with all of this in an effective way if you continue being so miserable.  Whether you have TM or MS, most neurologists want you to report new symptoms promptly, at the time they can be treated most effectively.  

The urinary and burning issues should be dealt with to ensure your health.  Otherwise you may find yourself in a perpetual decline.  Do what you can do for yourself before you feel so badly that you can't think straight.   Get these issues sorted out so you know what you are dealing with before they all blur together.

It cannot hurt to call your neurologist.  It certainly could help.  If nothing else you need to be monitored during this time.  It might be a flare or a reoccurance of TM.

Be well
Avatar f tn
Hi there,
I have decided to call and make my appointment with my neurologist on Monday.  It is the weekend here now.

Thanks so much for the information.  I have decided that this is a new symptom that also points to the spinal cord and not migraine headache!  Worth reporting in and well the perineum stuff is just driving me insane, that bothers me more but I think it's improving... albeit gradually. Plus I am still not emptying properly.

(Karen glad you are ok),

Thanks to everyone for their most informative replies.  

I have gone to the URL and found it very interesting.  I have googled my symptoms and keeps coming up with MS not migraine for this one... so I think in view that I have also had some lehermetteres perhaps I should go to the neuro.

Take care,
359574 tn?1328364024
I'm glad you're seeing your neurologist.  Sorry that like I so often do, you made the decision on a weekend.  Good luck.
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