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Electric-shock like pain in knee
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Electric-shock like pain in knee

Hello; for the past few months I have been experiencing a pain in my
knee, it is just to the outside of the patella. It is a very sharp pain, like an electrical shock. It happens totally at random. It can happen when I am walking, sitting, sleeping, etc. When the pain is not occurring, my knee feels
completely normal. When it happens, it usually happens every few
seconds or minutes, then stops for several hours. I am not aware of
any injury or unusual stress to that area. X-ray was normal and doctor's examination was clear. Any ideas?
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129 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_f_tn
Dear Laura,
I am suffering the same electric-shock pain in my knee that your described.  Can you, please, share with me what you know about it?

Thanks,

Pilar
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Avatar_n_tn
Did you find any info about this shocking pain? This just started happening to me this week. I feel crazy trying to explain it to my husband. Any Idea what the heck it is?

Thanks,
Rab
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Avatar_n_tn
I have suffered on & off for years with this. X ray & examination showed nothing. I am fit & healthy normally. It can be gone for years & then come back & stay for months. The pain is very sharp & brief & then goes without leaving any pain behind. It makes my eyes water the pain is so sharp. No rhyme or reason for the attacks..................
Anyone, any Ideas!!!!!
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Avatar_n_tn
I have a pain like this on the backside of my knee.  It started random, but now seems to occur more when I bend my toes up towards my knee.  I have tried to find info on this and sciatica seems to fit the bill more than anything, but everyone says that starts in the thigh and I don't have pain in my thigh.  It is quick, severe, and feels like someone is shocking me. I would guess that a shocking pain would be associated with a nerve being pinched.  Let me know if you find out anything else.
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Avatar_n_tn
I am with you.  This happened to me this week for the first time ever.  It is crazy pain and a very bizarre sensation...like getting electric shock .  It is happening to me too while I am doing very different things.

Anyone who has ideas and might give suggestions would be very appreciated.

Thanks
Anne
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Avatar_n_tn
This is so strange..  I am experiencing this also.  It feels like electric shocks... in my knee cap...  and it lasts about 2 minutes... all tiny shocks.. (painfull).  I wonder if this has anything to do with diabetes since I suffer from that as well.. anyone else?

roe
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Avatar_n_tn
I too have been feeling electric shocks in my left knee.  It may have to do with the hernias I have in my spinal cord that off and on press the nerve and thus cause the shock.  Is this is a possibility?

Carmen
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi, my name is Marco from Rome Italy.
I've been suffering from the same electric shock at my left knee, close to the patella on the left side of it. It started about 20 days ago (end of Aug 2008).
I guess it's a weird kind of neuropathy.
Anyway i played soccer until almost 3 yrs ago and in november 2005 i suffered an achillis' tendon break at the same leg (left leg).
Since then i put on about 10 kgs of weight. Is all of these things related?
Dunno if i suffer from diabetis.
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Avatar_n_tn
I also have "THE SHOCK" behind my right knee. I have been suffering from it for about 2 mts now.I wondered if the Dr would think I'm crazy, I had put off going... How do you explain to some one this CRAZY feeling? Sure enough, she had no answers. I am sched for a MRI on friday to ck my central nervous system, if that shows nothing they will do  more testing. Hopefully I will have some answers for you guys. I am so ready to find out something.... My happens at any time, I cant even cross my rt leg and it is very scary when I am driving... I cant do anything but let it pass and use my left leg to break...
I am 36 and healthy. Let you know something soon.
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Avatar_f_tn
I have been having this same problem for 6 months, I will be sitting and all of a sudden, this sharp pinching pain hits my in my knee, one or the other, sometimes in both knees at the same time, I will itch/rub untill it goes away in a few seconds. But it takes my breath out and I jerk in response to the shock. I have been a Diabetic for 13 years and no doctor has been able to explian this. Does anyone here even know what it is called? Or what causes it?
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Avatar_n_tn
I also have been suffering from the same knee pain. I have just read all the entries from July 2007, until the last one 2 days ago, on Oct. 08 and have yet to see anyone mention a solution.  Has anyone found something to help with this crazy  pain?
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Avatar_n_tn
Dear All,
The closest thing I can come up with from my on line research is
"Piriformis Syndrome".  Check out the following link for more information:
http://orthopedics.about.com/cs/sprainsstrains/a/piriformis.htm

Hope this helps someone find some answers.


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Avatar_f_tn
Im having the same pain,feels like im being shocked.It happens when i bend over.The tingling is between my ankle an heel.Does anyone know what this could be?              
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Avatar_n_tn
I feel for y'all.  I have been suffering with the same thing (excrutiating knee pain) for years, but because I am a "good little doctor's daughter" I wouldn't go to the doctor.  20 years later the pain along my whole sciatic nerve is so excrutiating and constant I just can't stand it.  I hobble and my leg muscles are noticibly smaller, to the point friends and family mention it.  MRIs of spine, hip and knee show nothing, and steroid epidurals gave minimal relief.  I've posted a question to the doctor in hopes he will guide me on how best to "bother" my local doctors in digging deeper for a diagnosis and CURE.  If I ever get answers, I'll be sure to let y'all know.  In the meantime, keep looking because if we have the same thing, it will only get worse.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have the same thing, electric like pain behind my right knee so severe that I often scream. I have had it for almost 9 months, in attacks lasting a minute or less, which now come 8 to 10 times a day.

I have treated it with chiropractic, acupuncture, massage, yoga, and a bit of traditional medicine. I have managed to change the pain, but not to beat it. And I don't know what causes it.

For me, acupuncture helped to define exactly where the pain is. Before acupuncture, the pain was so intense that it was impossible to pinpoint it.

Chiropractic solved back pain problems I used to have, but left the knee pain intact.

Massage helps temporarily by making attacks less intense and less frequent.

Yoga helped increase range of motion and reduce stiffness throughout my body and taught me to stretch various muscles, the tightness of which could possibly cause the nerve spasm, the piraformus (spelling?) and the IT band. The knowledge helps, but does not solve the problem completely.

Traditional medicine failed to tell me what the problem is, but it cost a lot of money and frustration. I tried a NSAID (non steroidal anti-inflamatory drug) called meloxicam, which does little to nothing except make me feel strange. I am still trying the drugs.

At this point, I am reasonably sure that a nerve is spasming for some reason and the possible causes of the spasms are brain farts (epileptic like events or migrain like events) of some sort, a bone spur, muscle tension, a blood clot that acts like a bone spur by impinging the nerve somehow. I notice that there are micro muscle movements when I am at rest that could trigger the nerve. If I think of skiing, for example, I may trigger a micromuscle movement and thus the nerve pain. This is all speculation,

I am at my wit's end looking for a cure. The attacks exhaust me. I won't take trips because the pain makes it too unpleasant. If anybody figures this out, please contact me. I really need help. ***@****
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Avatar_f_tn
Hello everyone, I too am in the same boat wit all of you. the first time this hapened to me was over 20 years ago thought I was dying. Mine is in the bend of the back of my knee, it feels like someone tpuched me with a 220 volt wire and just keeps going. then stops and comes back, with leg being real weak aftwards. Did not happen again for 10 years the not again for 2 years . Went into hospital they did all types of test and MRI's with no solution. Today is Christmas day and I have been down with this for over 3 weeks now. Going out of my mind. Have an appointment with a Nuerologist on 2/11 will advise if anything new. My family physician referred me to him says it could be a Neuroma which usually occours in foot but can occour in other parts of the body.
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Avatar_n_tn
Wow

I thought it was just me...

I started getting this "shock" about 3 months ago. It is on my inner thigh, about 12" above the knee. Occurs mostly while I'm sitting, but one day it happened alomost continually while I was walking, would hit me every time I took a step with that leg.

It ranges from a simple light, bizzare flutter, to a full blown shock causing my leg to jerk upward, very disconcerting if I happen to be in a meeting or room full of people. They'll llok at me like I'm some kind of spaz. :)
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi - I just started experiencing this pain about a week ago, and last night it was excruciating.  I've never felt anything like it!  I finally got to sleep after stretching that leg for about 15 minutes.

I did find some information that might be helpful - check out the post from tamiallen on this page: http://ehealthforum.com/health/topic81001.html.  I'm copying her response below as I'm going to my doctor today armed with this information!  I hope it helps you all.

"...my pain turned out to be my piriformis muscle. It is one muscle in a group of about 20 muscles in your butt. This particular muscle runs down the back of your leg and in my case felt tight all the time. It appears that my sciatica nerve ran through this group of muscles and was being "choked” thus causing the "electrical shock" feelings I was having. I ended up having 4 injections, one in my lower back and three directly into the periformis muscle. The cortisone shots worked temporarily in the beginning but the third shot has worked for about 3 months now. The trick is to get the periformis muscle to relax using the shots and therapy first. If that does not work they suggest releasing the muscle by having surgery – luckily for me the third shot seems to be working.

"It was a very long road, about 1 yr and 3 months before I was pain free. As you know - the pain is overwhelming both mentally and physically. Don't give up; see your doctor, a spine doctor and even a chiropractor if you have too. They are all there to help you and sometimes it just takes time to rule things out before you figure it out."
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Avatar_n_tn
My pain started after a 2 week layoff from running and martial arts last fall.  I stopped exercising altogether when I started having the spasms fearing it was an overuse injury.  Pain was consistent until christmas when I had a good 2 weeks of rest.  Pain came back on February.  I started riding my bike on a trainer every 2nd day.  It helps a lot.  If I don't ride, I'm guaranteed to have some pain.  My knee still feels weak and wonky but it beats having those pains.
  
Xray showed nothing and am waiting for an appointment for a MRI.

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Avatar_m_tn
I just joined the site because I was reading all the posts with questions concerning electric shock like pain in the knee. I'm a strength trainer in Canada and I encounter this type of pain frequently in my training studio. My specialization is in corrective training, so I work with people that want to train but don't want to irritate their existing pains. I don't want to go into the possible solutions for the type of knee pain you've all discribed because the entries seem to be from months past and perhaps you've all found your solutions. I know it can be very chronic, so if the problem still persists let me know then I'll get into it. I'm not a doctor but have extensive experience using exercise to correct injuries and pain. Let me know, i'd be happy to help.
Sean
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Avatar_m_tn
I have just started these same symptons of the knee about two weeks ago.  They come and go for no reason.  I have had an xray which showed nothing.  I could have one day where they come 30 times a day, and the next day I get nothing.  If any of you have an update on this, please let me know
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Avatar_n_tn
I have been having this pain for about 5 weeks.  I'm 36 weeks pregnant and I can't take pain killers.  The pain runs from my calf to my thigh across the knee joint, at the back, about 6-8inches worth, on the inside.  I have been to hospital several times now, driving myself to A&E and begging for help. I have been given codiene, tested for a blood clot and most recently, last night advised that I have a Baker's Cyst!  The pain is so bad that I am becoming an emotional wreck.  I am unable to sleep because of the anxiety that an attack of electric shocks is just around the corner and it usually is.  It happens day or night, for a second or the longest was four hours but usually several minutes.  I would also describe it as the nerve feeling as though it is under great tension and someone is pinging it with a view to snapping it.  Also, in the last few days after a fourth visit to a chiropractic in five days the tendon in my foot is now pulling and feels too short!  I'm really scared that this cannot be treated.  I currently have an ice pack strapped to the back of my knee which so far is helping to numb the pain.  This is also cold and not great in the summer but it's all I have to hold on to.  I'll let people know if I find a solution. Julia
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Avatar_m_tn
I have started the antifungal diet and started back on natural antifungals.  You should talk to your doctor before doing either since you are pregnant.  I went on this years back for chronic sinus, along with prescription antifungals, and it helped even with problems other than sinus.  Fungus can cause a wide range of problems.  The prescriptions for fungus are diflucan, and nystatin.  Some naturals are, oregano, olive leaf extract, grapefruit seed extract, caprylic acid, & pau d arco.  I also started stretching for the lower back muscles.  I read that it could telegraph pain to the knee.  It has only been five days since I began, but I have, (knock on wood) for the past few days not had anymore shock like knee pains.  Like you I also could not sleep anticipating the oncoming attacks.  Until you talk to your doctor, you could at least stay away from processed foods, and especially sugar.  Here is a copy of the phase one diet, and good luck to you:   For some reason, some of the rows get thrown together when I paste it.  It may take you a little longer to decipher it:

Food Groups      Foods allowed                    Foods excluded  
                             on the diet                          from the diet


1. sugar                         none                                                   All sugars excluded

2. Artificial and            Stevia, stevia plus                            aspartame, saccharin
    herbal sweeteners    

3. Fruit                          Green apples, berries,                     All others, including fruit
                                       avocados, grapefruit, juices
                                       lemons, and fresh coconut

4. Meat                          Virtually all meats, including          Breaded meats                        
fish, poultry and beef

5. Eggs                            Yes, all types allowed                       Avoid egg substitutes

6. Dairy                          Butter and yogurt (organic All others, including mar-
                                        is best): sparingly:  cream garine and any of the but-
                                        cheese, organic, unsweetened ter substitutes
                                         whipping cream, and real
                                        sour cream

7. Vegetables                 Most fresh, unblemished Potaoes and legumes
vegetables and freshly (beans and peas)
made vegetable juice

8. Beverages                  Bottled or filtered water; Coffee and tea (including
non-fruity, herb teas; decaf) and regular/diet
Stevia-sweetened, fresh sodas
                                        Lemonade or lime-ade

9. Grains                        Zero grains allowed                          Pasta, rice, corn, wheat
quinoa, amaranth, millet,
                                                                                                    buckwheat, oats and bar-
                                                                                                    ley

10. Yeast products        No yeast allowed                                All areexcluded, as are
                                                                                                    bread, mushrooms, past-
                                                                                                    ries and alcohol

11. Vinegars                  Unpasteurized, apple cider Pickles, salas dressings
                                        vinegar and black olives green olives, soy sauce
                                       not aged in vinegar

12. Oils                           Olive, grape or flax seed, Partially-hydrogenated
                                        and virgin coconut (cold- (“trans”) oils, corn, and
                                        pressed is best)                     peanut oil

13. Nuts                          Raw nuts, including pe- Peanuts (and all peanut
                                        cans, almonds, walnuts, products) and pistachios
                                        cashews, pumpkin seeds are excluded.


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Avatar_n_tn
PLEASE post your possible solution. I have these same pains and can hardly deal with it. Thanks
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Avatar_dr_m_tn
Hi,
The most probable cause of sharp shooting pain in the knee could be a torn or damaged ligament . Please go for an MRI of the knee joint. MRI is an accurate and detailed investigation .Please consult an orthopaedic surgeon for the diagnosis .Hope this helps you . Take care and regards !
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Avatar_n_tn
I am a runner and have the same pain. Mine is the IT Band. (Runners Knee)
My therapist has been applying heat, massage therapy and active release. He is convinced it is a prob with the IT band. It isn't a constant pain...it comes out of nowhere and feels like an electric shock being zapped onto the outside of my knee (from top to bottom of knee).

It can be so bad it drops me to the ground. Then, within 1 min...all is ok. I will try therapy for a while before jumping to conclusions of sciatica.
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Avatar_n_tn
I am experiencing the same. Has anybody gotten a diagnosis on this?
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Avatar_n_tn
has anyone gotten a diagnosis for this???
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Avatar_n_tn
I just got a diagnosis on this, unfortunately it is not good I have all the same symptoms everyone else is having, got scared went in for an MRI and my orthopedic said it was due to cartlidge being ripped and the liquid between the knee is slowing going away, leaving nothing but bone and bone to rub leaving the sharp and tingling feeling. It is correctable but it involves surgery where they will need to make 3 very small cuts. I will post more info as I go for my check in 4 weeks
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Avatar_f_tn
I was suffering from the same pain too. I felt it go up my knee and then it would be followed by a tingling sensation. I finally got it looked at and it is basically the hamstring and your knee muscals are tight! So, when you walk or do anything, your knee and leg muscles are contracting and de- contracting, in which the nerve in by the patella is getting caught in the contacting and de contracting process. Talk to your dr about streches you can do.
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Avatar_m_tn
Laura (and others who suffer from sudden electric shock in knee type of symptom),
My knee pain comes on with little or no warning.  It lasts somewhere in the range of 10 to 30 seconds.  I am usually sitting, but it has happened occasionally in a standing position.  There may be a few twitches to signal the onset.  When there is, I panic knowing that excruciating shock-like pain is about to follow.  This is especially scary if I am driving a car as it hits me in my right leg - it happened once and I had to brake with my left leg.  You can imagine how difficult it is to maintain control of a vehicle when this pain hits.  I am a physically active person and I do not have any knee injuries that I am aware of or that doctors have been able to identify.  My first attacks came several weeks after I had completed participation in a exercise study which involved a lot of stationary biking.  The key was that I had substantially increased my leg muscles and then reduced the level of exercise.  The attacks went on for many months - maybe even a couple of years.  My family doctor sent me to several specialists - at the Mayo Clinic, they know what they are doing - without anyone finding a cure.  When the problem continued my doctor sent me through specialists again and this time a doctor who specialized in sports medicine diagnosed the problem as an imbalance of leg muscles creating an strain on the position of my knee cap.  I received some implants for my shoes which did not seem to help, but I also received some recommended stretches which seemed to help enormously.  I have been free of this pain for a few years, but it has recently started up again - probably due to a year and a half of heavy workouts on an elliptical machine, plus a week-long bicycle trip last fall, and my subsequent reduction in those exercises.  I am quite certain that, for me, it is tied to building up leg muscles and then reducing or changing how I use those muscles.  Unfortunately, I no longer have the sheet describing the stretches that helped so much.  I think there may be a particular type of stretch that makes a difference.  (I had followed some unproductive stretching recommendations from my first round of specialists.)  I found your posting while searching for a diagnosis and set of recommended stretches.  No luck so far in my on-line searching.  I may need to ask my doctor to look back through my medical records and find the sports medicine doctor that helped me out the first time.  Please let me know if you have found a solution or a stretching exercise that made a difference.
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Avatar_n_tn
Ok after countless hours on this puter I think I have found an answer and I hope all of you will spread this word...I believe it is a form of Saphenous nerve entrapment,I went onto"nerve entrapment syndromes of the lower extremeties" (googled) and there they all are...I hope this helps I have printed off the one on the saphenous nerve but others may be more of other complaints I am bringing this to my doc I cannot take one more er with the looking for drugs attitude don't want them never did.....wanted answers...hope this helps
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Avatar_f_tn
I am currently deployed and this started hurting to me.  i went to physical therapy were the doctor then said it is a fluid and inflammation that is underneath the knee cap.  It then pushes an air pocket that is under the knee cause it to pinch something or push something that sends this shock down my leg.  sometimes mine goes up my thigh or it can go down to my ankle sometimes causing my toes to go numb.  i am going back to the doctor tomorrow because it is more painful now.  if i find out the name or if i find out the more information i will post it up
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Avatar_f_tn
I've previously written to another forum on this site. Just to update, I've been pain free for only six days, but it seems like a long time! My attacks early on were several weeks apart but becoming more frequent. The first was in November while I was driving.
The last day I had attacks, I had one before I got up in the morning and one at eight in the evening.
This is still controlling my life. I had my knee MRI'd last Wednesday (after having an attack in the morning), but do not know the results yet.
I have learned from reading this forum that this pain happens to both men and women.
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Avatar_f_tn
I've also noticed that my knees/legs often feel water-logged although I've been told there is no fluid accumulation. There is no visible swelling.
I'm wondering also if this could be a brain malfunction, sending out an "illegal" pain signal.
A few years ago when my sister was the age I am now (60), she had "zingies" anywhere on her body, which caused her to jump like we sometimes do when we're about asleep. After two years and many many tests, including a brain scan, no cause was found but the zingies eventually quit. They weren't extremely painful, but made her jump.
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Avatar_m_tn
Well it looks like we all vent and cry about or condition for years now but there's no explanation why we are going throught this!

Several months ago I had a strange feeling that would occur behind my left knee towards the inside of my leg (on the far right) about once an hour like a little tiny electric shock or buzz. This was about 3 or 4 months ago. It would go on for about a period of three days and go away for about 2 weeks then come back. The 3rd time the sensation changed from the electric shock to severe cramping every 2 or three minutes for a period of about 2 days. The cramping would get so bad I had to pull over on the freeway when I was driving. Then it went away. Now 2 weeks later its back and I still have the cramping sensation but not as severe. I just had an ultrasound and they found no blood clot or liquid behind the knee.

The only thing that has changed with me lately is for the last year I have been working out regularly with a trainer to lose weight and before that I led a completely sedentary lifestyle. About the time that the shocks started is when I started to slack off a bit, still exercising but not as much. I really wonder if this is due to a "building and weakening of the muscles" like someone had posted earlier. Or perhaps a nerve issue? It doesn't seem to be life threatening but I will continue to monitor it.

If anyone makes any progress towards finding a reasonable explanation why this is happening to us please share as it will ease the minds of some very worried and upset people. Myself included!
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Avatar_m_tn
An update on the knee pain I've been experiencing.  When I had this condition a few years back, it was always a very intense shock feeling that lasted several seconds.  This year I've experienced some pretty intense symptoms, but I've also had a lot of minor twitches, some that are lead to the more intense version and some that do not.  The less intense incidents seem to be focused on that spot below the knee where the doctor taps the rubber hammer to check for reflex response.  In fact, the pain is a lot like that reflex is being triggered in a big way, but without the hammer tap.  The symptoms seem to occur more a day or two after a hefty leg workout - running, intense walking, stair stepper, or elliptical machine.  The symptoms don't seem to be triggered by anything I happen to be doing at the time they occur.  Sometimes I'm at my desk with knee at 90 degree angle, sometimes sitting with leg pulled in, sometimes driving, sometimes walking, sometimes while running, and sometimes while sleeping.  I'm going to try switching my shoes for work and for exercise to see if that helps.
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Avatar_f_tn
I was doing some more online research last night, using the results of my MRI. I do have a Baker's Cyst (small) and another type of small cyst. The forum I was reading was from people who have Baker's Cysts and had told their stories. Some of them indicate that the cysts pop occasionally and the fluid draining onto some nerve is what causes the pain . . . and that is why it is so temporary. Actually, I take this as good news . . . that I can be assured that if that is my situation that the pain will never last more than a few minutes at a time.
The nurse practitioner who explained the MRi results to me several weeks ago didn't think any of the cysts cause the electric-shock, dagger type of pain . . . but I'm beginning to wonder more and more.
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Avatar_f_tn
I had sent a link to the forum I was talking about, but this forum won't accept it,
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Avatar_f_tn
I'm not sure what I have posted previously, but I'm becoming more convinced that I do have neuralgia. You can do your own study  about it at the Mayo Clinic web page. There are two types of neuralgia discussed there. One of them usually affects the face, but I think this might be the kind I have because I do sometimes have some pretty intense facial pain also. It starts out feeling like a toothache, then moves all the way up to my forehead. Check it out, gang.

Today I received a free sample of Neuragen, an ointment that can be used in conjunction with other medicines. I haven't needed to use it yet. I'm saving it for a rainy day. It is very expensive in the drugstores.
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Avatar_m_tn
Thanks for all of your posts.  I have been suffering from these intense short lasting (10-30 second) electric shock-like episodes in my knee for about 4 years.  I have the same symptoms and it presents in the same way.  It is localized in the right knee, kind of to the outside.  It goes as quickly as it comes.  It can happen at any time and any position ... sitting, lying down, driving, standing, completely random.  The first time it happened when I was sleeping.  Then it didn't happen for about a year.  After that, it didn't happen for a year and a half.  But for the last week or so, it's been happening every morning.  It's like a nice little built in alarm clock that nearly brings me to tears and then quickly goes away.  I have already had an MRI without any diagnosis.  That was a year and a half ago.  I'm going to see a different Dr. at Mass General Hospital.  I'm bringing this entire thread to help explain to the Dr. what I'm feeling and so that he understands that there are many others out there with this identical, yet very strange, pain.  Since he has yet to see me, he's starting with an X-ray ... waste of time and money, but it will start the process.  I will post if I learn anything good out of this.  The only good thing about this pain is that it lasts for such a short amount of time.  If it ever lasted for more than a minute, I think I would pass out!
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Avatar_f_tn
I am thinking there are two different (or more) conditions in this thread. There is the electrical shock on the top of the knee and the one behind the knee. Mine is behind the knee on the left side of my left leg. I have no knee injuries or any other kind of knee problems. I am not on any type of medications nor have never been pregnant. I have had a lower back injury, spells of sciatica and minor RLS.
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Avatar_f_tn
Mine started 4 weeks ago intense pain lasting up to an hour. I just scream in pain. Nothing on xrays. Now I have shocking like pain all the time. I can't take it. There is nothing like this pain. Dr has me taking naproxen but the shocks still come. Please is there anyone who can help me. I have no insurance so all of this comes put of my pocket. I am 63 and did not injure my knee. It is under the knee cap.
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Avatar_f_tn
Please try to go to a neurologist, preferably, and see if you can start taking Gabapentin. It would be expensive I think with no insurance, but Gabapentin seems to be a life-saver for me so far.
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Avatar_f_tn
I started taking Gabapentin and haven't had the real bad pain, but the shocking pain is still there but not as intense. I am going to make an appt. with a neurologist in Jan. when my deductable starts over as I will have to pay for an mri. I just wonder if that will show the nerves which is what I think the problem is.
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Avatar_f_tn
You might need to increase the amount of Gabapentin, but don't do it without your doctor's consent. Even though I'm taking 1800MG per day, I had a very bad attack yesterday morning, but nothing since.
I had a knee MRI recently to see if some cysts were pressing on nerves, but they weren't.
So I guess the MRI does show the nerves.
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I would like to know how you handle it when you are in a public place. Also, how do you handle it when you are driving?
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Do any of you live in Illinois? I'd love to talk to someone in person.
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Hello: I found a website that specifically talks about these electric shocks that are very painful. I've been having these shooting electric shocks in my knee area. They take my breath away and are incredibly painful. I'm still doing more investigating, but here is the link below. The condition is called spondylosis.


http://orthopedics.about.com/od/spondylosis/a/spondy.htm
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hi,  I'm Rolando from Mexico,  

I´ve been having these elecric shock like pain Exactly as all of you describe it for 2 years now.

I somehow managed to train and run an Ironman through this pain by getting a daily dose of Dolo-Nerurobion (Dicolfenac and vitamins B1, B6 and B12),   this made the attacks dissapear at all while taking my daily dose, but If I stop the medication, it appeared again two or three weeks after stopping it.    It's hard on the stomach though.

The other temporary solution I found is to take one pill of Valium (Diazepam) ONLY three days in a row at night and stretch for a long time (at least 40 minutes) right after I woke up next morning.    This  made the attacks go away for 6 months at all (even without having the Dolo-Neurobion everyday)   It seems to deeply relax the muscles or anything that is causing the pain.  but you SHOULD ask your Doctor before doing it. I did.

the pain started again while training for a simple 10k last year,  I just can't handle it anymore and I'm not willing to have medication for ever...  so I took an MRI that showed my meniscus were broken,  so I had surgery a week ago to see if that solved the problem,  It showed that the meniscus were ok, but my cartiladge was worn,  I have to go on rehab now, but the attacks kept going on right after the surgery!!!  

I will keep you informed I find the solution, I'm tottaly comitted to find it wathever it takes.

(sorry if my english is not perfect)

cheers!
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Yesterday and today  I had a strange feeling that would occur at the top of my left knee towards the inside of my leg like a little tiny electric shock or buzz. for about 3 or 4 seconds. Seems to be similar to those all of you are feeling BUT in my case I had simultaneously the same tiny electric shock in my chest near my heart in the upper part in both ocassions. I was really scared. I thought it was going to be a heart atack or something. Now I see that I am not alone. I asked my doctor what could it be and he said NI. No Idea.
Maybe we are from Kpax.
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I know of another man whose first attack was severe and he thought he might be having a heart attack, but apparently not. The pain went from his knee to his chest. He is fine now.
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I have been taking the maximum dose of Gabapentin since late December and I am having remission from my attacks.
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I don't know what the issue is with the shooting knee pain, but my 85 year old father has arthritis and this same knee pain periodically and some time ago his orthopedic dr prescribed voltaren gel because he cannot take oral pan relievers - it works very well!
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I have exactly what everybody is describing here and I found that simply puting some ice directly where it hurts remove the pain instantly.

Annie
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I was at work (as a substitute teacher) sitting in the lunchroom, when suddenly I had this sharp, debilitating pain behind my left knee, off to the left outer side.  It went away after about 30 seconds. I didn't worry about it until a week later while out of town, it happened again.  The pain is so excrutiating.  I have never felt anything like and it doesn't seem to matter if I stretch out my leg or change the position. I actually cry out in pain and I consider myself to have a high pain threshold. That day, I continued to have these attacks every 1 hour or so.  It got so bad, I knew I had to get to a Dr.  As I was driving to get to Urgent Care I had another attack.  I thought I was going to have to call 911 as it was nearly impossible to drive with the pain.  The Dr. found nothing, I though I had a blood clot.  He ruled that out.  I did take an aspirin and that seemed to help.  I had no attacks after I got to the Dr. (except one in the waiting room).  I had no attacks for about 3 weeks, then last week I had one, and then this week I have had two attacks.  They come on with no sign and leave as quickly as they come with no pain afterward, lasting anywhere from 10 - 30 seconds.  Has anyone found an answer for this.  I looked up all of the ones that people have posted such as spendylosis, soral nerve, neroma, piriformis syndrome, peroneal nerve and none of these are like my pain.  The closest thing I found online was saphenous nerve entrapment, but even that I am not so sure of.  Please if anyone has found an answer let me know.  I am afraid to go anywhere for fear it will happen.  I am 56 years old, in fairly good health, 5'3', about 135 lbs.
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I have been experiencing this same pain, feels like an electric shock inside my knee, its very random and last for a few seconds, not sure what causes it or why this is happening. i stopped all cardio, running, cycling, eliptical. I did an x-ray which showed nothing, and i am scheduled to do an MRI on the 19th, so i would keep you guys posted! Hope we can all find a solution, it's REDUNKULOUS!!!!
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Hi everyone.
I have had Chondromalacia patella for about 6 years now. It is th softening and breaking of the cartliage. All of my X-Rays came back perfect but my Dr. wanted me to have an MRI. That is where she found it. The main symptom is sharp pain and the knee will lock up. Recently I have started to have the electric shock feeling. One was so severe it acutally went all the way up to my heart. Scared me to death. So after doing some more research on Chondromalacia, it can cause the electric shock/tingling numbness feeling. Hope this helps.
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I had the same problem in my right knee on the past 15 moths, I do many blood analysis, X-ray, and MRI and all of them is good without founding any problems! in last 4 months my doctor let me do a physical therapy, but still had the same pain and it's come and go suddenly every time :(
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I came across this thread while having the same excruciating shocks behind my knee.  They were never triggered by anything, happened in different positions, would wake me in the middle of the night, and would last 5-10 seconds.  Unbelievably painful, and like others I was always afraid of when an episode might hit.  I've found my solution, so I'm posting this hoping it will help others.  My husband pressed around my knee and leg leading up to my hip, trying to find something that would trigger the pain (not fun, but helpful).  He found spots that would consistantly trigger the pain.  This was the first step in finding a cause, since my position and activity weren't consistantly triggering anything.  He found a spot on my leg and followed the triggering path all the way up to my hip/glute area.  It was very sore there.  Before the pains began, I had started a DVD workout that included a lot of squats.  Even though the pain I was feeling was in my knee, the trigger was a muscle deep in my hip/bottom area.  I took Ibuprofen, put a large microwaveable moist heat pack on my thigh/hip/bottom area, and then he would knead out that area.  I still had episodes that night, but they were better.  The next day was considerably better.  Still episodes, but fewer and less severe.  I've continued this "therapy" and have received even greater relief today.  At this point, I can tell that glute muscle is loosening up, because it is spasming some and is sore, but I've experienced much relief.  It is so much better than the knee shocks.  I hope this is helpful for others.  It is a very inexpensive and easy solution that didn't require xrays, doctors, prescription meds, etc.  This won't be everyone's solution, but it is worth a try.  I imagine that this time next week, I'll be back to normal.
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update...

after 3 or 4 nights of my "therapy" last week, I was virtually shock free and in a week's time from my worst pain, I was completely shock free.  I've started getting a few small shocks today, but I haven't done the heat pack for days.  I guess my muscle is still too tight.
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Looks like I'm the latest to experience this horrific pain. My 3 year old daughter bursts in to tears when this comes on me because I'm in so much pain. Like others it comes on my left side of my knee and lasts for 5 seconds or so. The first time it happened I thought as was dying. Doc and physio has said it could be because of a loose body. If this was a longer more permanent pain I would have to loose my leg it's that bad. Booked in for a scan next week but not hoping for much after reading everyone's comments.. Has anyone been cured yet :( Paul Manchester uk
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I tried novice799's suggestion and had similar results.  The leg pains haven't stopped completely, but they happen less frequently.  When the pain starts, massaging the points of the hip/glute area that are most painful usually decreases the pain significantly and quickly.  Thanks novice799!!
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I have had several attacks that last no more than 4-5 seconds of excruciating pain.  I have looked at all the above links that people have posted and can find nothing that describes what I have.  The pain absolutely takes my breath away.  There is nothing that I can do to stop this pain - no amount of rubbing or stretching helps.  I first had an onset about 3 months ago.  It would hit about once or twice an hour and went on for about 6 hours that way.  Then, it stopped.  I didn't have any pain again until yesterday.  There is no predicting when it will hit.  It just does and I can have 3 or 4 of them in a row - stopping just long enough for me to catch my breath and then it will strike again.  I'm going to watch this site to see if anyone comes up with an answer.  Thanks for any help or answers.  I sure wish I was the only one experiencing this -- I hate knowing that there are others out there going through this truly excruciating/debilitating pain.
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By the way, just by accident, I did discover that if I apply pressure (using my thumb) to the center of my foot, I will reproduce this pain to my knee.  The pain does not go up through the leg.  It just produces the pain immediately to the knee.  Again, the pain will only last about 4-5 seconds.  Try it and let me know if this happens to you.  
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Found out it's not related to pushing on the bottom of my foot.  I guess it was just coincidental.  I am going for an MRI of my right knee tomorrow.  I know they won't find anything, but I will post my outcome.  I had one attack 4 nights ago, but haven't had any since.  
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the electric shock feeling you experiencing is your sciatic nerve in pain which can feel like a stabbing or electric shock-like quality.  Alot things can trigger this feeling.  Sometimes it can be a minor feeling to a disabling feeling which can leave you immobile for weeks to months.  Naprox helps deals with this if it bothers you on a regular.
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My electrical shock pain comes from the heel area on my left foot.  It comes at any time and lasts anywhere from 1 minute to 20 minutes.  It is a pain that takes my breath away and causes me to kick out each time the pain hits.  
I have been going to chiro, physio, massage, and ostopathy.  I keep hoping that one will help with this pain.  I have been told to stretch, but it doesn't appear to be working.
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I had a right knee surgery due to the ligament damage in March 2010. Since last three months, I am having electrica shocking/hammring pain on my right knee. It comes and goes within 10 to 30 seconds. Formally, it used to have occassionally once week time. However since last two three days, it comes every half an hour to hour and at night also.


When i am sitting in my office chair or at home, thenn don't have much problem. As soons as I start walking or stand up, st some point, i will have a pain.

It's sometimes just unbearble and brings tear in the eyes.

Anyone had any good remedeies or suggestions as per advise from thie doctor.
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I've been suffering with the attacks for 6 months.  Knee MRI came back negative.  Neurology, ortho and pt were useless.  I I even tried some stronger stretches this past week and completely flared up my symptoms.  Nuerontin didn't do squat; just made me feel sick, high and nauteous.  Vicotin doesn't touch the pain either.  My husband researched electric knee pain and set up a site where all his findings are; what it is not, what it may be, possible cures.......It's a great tool to take to your doctor...since increasingly we have to be our own advocates.    If you have a lumbar mri ask for your butt to be mri'd at the same time if possible.  Our thinking is that I have piriformis syndrome.  90% of people have sciatic nerve running around butt muscles, the remaining 10% have it running through the piriformus muscle. SO, when your butt muscle is tight, then it pinches sciatica, hence the inconsistent knee shooting nerve pain.,  Coknown.com is a free web site; save your recipes, vacation plans, and share this research with others by letting them add to and review your information...   check it out for the knee pain.  Good luck!!!  will post after the 29th with mri results......
http://coknown.com/project/894
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I am so relieved to see that i'm not losing my mind. This pain has come and gone previously in my right knee but never lasting more than a few seconds with episodes only for a few days then gone, however, this time it's back with a vengence. I see a pain specialist already for back pain and know that I have arthritis in various parts of my body including that right knee cap but when it hits you can't help but gasp no matter where you are. I haven't mentioned it to my pain specialist as I was afraid he'd think I was losing my mind but I see him again in 2 weeks and will mention it to him then. I use a cream call zuacta, only available in Canada via prescription and is quite expensive without coverage and its' great for the arthritis but does nothing for this pain. I get the electric shock pain but tonight I developed the new feeling of water running down my kneecap. Will keep you all posted when I talk to the pain specialist.
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Wow! I guess I not alone. So far, today, I've had 4 of these attacks on the left side of my right knee. It feels like I hit my "crazy bone"  but in my knee. First there are two twitches, then BAM!!! Heat, electrical shock, intense pain, then gone. But those 4 or 5 seconds are intense. What is amazing is that no one has posted anything that helps. I have had this condition off and on for 10 months. I have not yet been to an MD about it. But I may have to before too long. But after reading all these posts, there this seems to be a futile effort. Bottom line is that this takes away the quality of our daily lives and there appears to be nothing we can do about it. Damn! This is frustrating. Believe me, if I find any relief any time, I will post it. God bless all of you going through this. It could be worse. But it would be nice if it was gone.
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I responded to you but can't see it posted.....so here goes again!
I had a back injury years ago and so think that the attacks may be caused by two things:
1--herniated disc causing sciatic nerve pain in knee.
2-  piriformis syndrome- pinching of butt muscle onto your sciatica.  this really makes sense to me because I can go days without attacks.

Cream solution sounds very very questionable to me.  Especially if it's inconsistent, and brought on my any position, and by any activity or non activity.  Knee MRIS and xrays come back negative.   My next action is back mri and if that comes back negative, then we do cortisone shot inthe butt to relax the muscle and stop it from squeezing the piriformis.  
All info about my symptoms on ****.com    public dashborad, electric knee pain.    GOODLUCK!
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I am a 45 female living in Canada. I only mention my citizenship because I understand that for many health care is not free as it has been for me.  
My situation was perplexing to say the least.  For 13 months I had electric shock like pain behind my left knee.  Initially it began while I sat on hard chairs along side my students.  Most recently it would shoot pain down my leg and behind my knee more toward the inside of the leg.  I saw my doctor who sent me for a cat scan of my lower spine.  I insisted it was originating somewhere in my pelvis.  I could tell because when I shifted in the chair or stood up it would resolve.  Nothing came of the cat scan of the lower spine except some narrowing and beginning of arthritis and so I was referred to Physiotherapy.
Two months of physio only frustrated and irritated the nerve.  Next I had a referral to a neurologist because I insisted it was nerve pain!  
She did an MRI of the lower spine (again even though I insisted it was originating from my pelvis).  Results - negative.  The neurologist was ready to send me away eluding that my pain was not nerve pain.  Ready to send me off to pain management specialist I insisted that it was nerve pain and originated in the pelvis!!! She agreed to a second more specific MRI this time of my pelvis.   She mentioned the OBTURATOR nerve.  Upon research I agreed that this was the nerve that had me jumping up from chairs and needing to get out of the car on any long rides.  The results from the second MRI were negative however they did see and "incidental" finding of a 27 mm hemorrhagic mass on my left ovary.  Along with some lymph nodes that popped up on my neck (occipital) she (neurologist) advised me to look into this matter right away.  Additionally she would now be referring me to that pain management specialist who would likely be giving me injections into the site (obturator nerve?) for my leg pain.  I agreed and left her office once again in frustration because now I had a more serious concern and still the obturator nerve pain behind my knee and leg which radiated up to the groin area on occasion.  I already had an ultrasound booked for the two small lumps on my neck and so my family dr referred me to a gyn/ob for the cyst.
I met the Gyn/OB specialist yesterday and was relieved to hear that the hemorrhagic mass is most likely normal but will be getting an ultrasound to be sure.  During the consult the Dr actually listened to all my symptoms of shooting pain behind my knee and decided to do a pelvic exam.  Rolling eyes, thinking, "Is this really necessary", I reluctantly agreed.  I would not regret this decision.  He discovered that my formerly retroverted uterus had now become retroflexed (flipped) and he manually attempted put it in place.  It took two attempts and hurt like crazy. This was the answer to all my leg pain.  There is no guarantee that it will stay put however,  before my exam I had waited 30 minutes to see him.  I could only sit for about 15 until I had to start moving.  So I stood until I was called in but by then the nerve was irritated.  Immediately after he made the adjustment to my uterus I sat up and the pain in my leg was gone.  He left the room and I sat in a chair for 15 minutes and no nerve pain!!!! It's been almost 24 hours and I can still sit.  
I can see from reading all the posts here that there are different things going on, but I am only one story and reading others' has been an amazing help to me.  Sometimes you may need to look beyond the "it's originating from your spine" approach.  I urge you to not give up looking for the source of your pain and listen to your body.
Never in my life did I think I was going to find the answer to my symptoms when I walked in to see the gynecologist but am I ever glad I agreed to the pelvic exam.
Whether removing the uterus or getting a sling proceedure done to hold it in place is in my future, I'm so happy.  Perhaps it will even stay in place, although I'm not so sure as it was flipped for at least 13 months!  But the discovery made me dance like Allistair Sims in a Christmas Carol yesterday and my husband thought I'd lost my mind.  
Wishing every one of you an answer to your pain,
~Ginette
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I had my back MRI (see prior post ) and now I have a bulged disc L4 L5m but I think that that was a result of not exercising since my KNee has caused such pain for the last 8 months.  My doctor has agreed to do a shot of cortisone in the piriformis muscle (under xray since it's such a deep muscle).  I am hoping this will relax my butt muscle and I will be pain free.  In the meantime, he prescribed me Lidocaine Ointment USP 5% 35.44 GM  3X daily (small, small amount on my knee) topically.  
Fingers crossed I haven't had any attacks today (had 3 yesterday prior to ointment).  I have walked for one hour AND done gardening on a slope today so can't believe I'm feeling so good..  Ointment was $30 with prescription but well well worth it, as you can imagine.  Will keep everyone posted to see if Lidocaine is as good as it appears.....
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I had the same problems as described above with the shocking occurring for 30 seconds or less under my knee cap about 4-5 inches.  My chiropractor (the best in the world) ruled out IT band due to the location of the shock.  The L4 nerve I believe was the source of this.  My lower back/hips were out.  Then she held on below my knee as I laid flat on my back. I was instructed to tighten my quad.  When I did, I hesitated at first, then was able to tighten.  I tried it again with the same result.  The roll of my kneecap was basically off, like a closet door of the tracks.  Once my kneecap was adjusted, I was able to tighten my quad with no problems.  It only makes sense that this had to be a part of the problem.  I remembered twisting this knee violently snowboarding two months earlier so I am convinced we are on the right track.  The shock pain before was beyond desciption and if I was in a crowd of folks at anything important I would warn them that I may scream in pain at any minute for less than 30 seconds and then I would be fine.  It was really embarrassing.  ***@****
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Well mines began on may 25 and until today has gotten worse the pain doesn't go away at all I can't take it no more I have had mri,xray,ulrasound to my knee and from Dr to specialist, so tomorrow I have an appt with a neuro they a Check if you have a pinched nerve with electric shocks.I hope that's what it is, cause this *****, painful and stressful not knowing whats going on, I can't walk bend my knees nothing my  foot gets swollen and numb, my back and neck in terrible pain but less than my knee.the knee feels like is falling, weird
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yes i do have the same type of pain which come at any point of time during the day..its very disgusting like a nerve is twisted inside my right knee...i dont understand as what is the reason for this ..any remedy is really helpful...

Digvijay
Hyderabad, India
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how has the knee responded? i got a topical anti inflamitory that seemed to work for a while but the pains have come back making me question if it did at all..
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i have had random intense shocking jolts of pain just beneath my left kneecap (in or under my patella tendon) on and off for a year and a half.it is the by far the worst pain i have ever felt lasting from 1 to 10 seconds at a time. it comes without warning and with no pain before or after it hits.i have had 1 to 8 attacks in a given day. i have seen an orthopedist, neurologist and physical therapist and had x rays as well as two mri's(which showed nothing wrong). bottom line..... is nobody has figured it out. they were gone for 5 months after giong to physical therapy for 3 months but have since come back and pt does not seem to be working this time.went on naproxen for a month which greatly reduced them but they came right back after the pills where gone..got a topical anti inflamitory called pennsaid which seemed to work for a couple of weeks but seems to have lost its effectiveness making me question if it worked at all.as horrible as the shock-like pains are themselves, its the mental stress of not  knowing where or when they will strike. car,sleep, standing, sitting. there is no rhyme or reason that i can conclude and spend too much of my time worried about it....can someone help..?im losing my mind!
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Hello Sean,
My name is Thomas. I would be very interested in finding out what kind of corrective exercises you may suggest. Could you drop me a mail at thomas at easyfatloss4all *******?
Thanks so much in advance.
Best

Thomas
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I have been having hip and knee pain for over a year. I also got electro shock like pain down the outside of my knee about 2 months ago. But it is all much better now and I know it will be gone soon, because I have found the cause and the solution.

In my opinion, the cause of it is a blocked or compromised nerve flow. The symptoms of blocked, irritated or compromised nerves of the lower extremities are numerous and include electro shock like pain, numbness in feet and toes, hip pain, knee pain, tight hamstrings etc.

All nerves of the lower extremities origin in the lumbar spine. A pinched nerve in the lumbar spine may not hurt in the lower back but may well cause any of the above mentioned symptoms.

I have been reading through many of the above posts and I believe there are some common denominators among most of us, who have suffered from this. Most of us have a job where we sit a lot, probably in front of a computer, probably in an office environment. Some may be overweight, some may be sedentary.

The points are that most of us sit way too long, probably in a bad posture, are constantly dehydrated, and exposed to electromagnetic pollution.

Now as we have established the cause, we can stop the guesswork and go about finding solutions.

For immediate action, I recommend 1) Seeing a reputable chiropractor, who will mobilize your lower spine. This will do wonders as it will free up trapped or blocked nerve lines - give this some time though, because an irritated nerve needs some time to calm down. 2) Hydrating properly and taking a multi-vitamin, multi-mineral supplement with generous amounts of all water-soluble vitamins. This will ensure that your bodily tissue is hydrated well and stays hydrate. Again, this will take some days up to a week, depending on your size.

For mid term action, 1) Focus on losing weight until you reach your ideal weight 2) Start an exercise program focused on spinal health such as Pilates or a programme prescribed by a Physio Therapist 3) Stretch regularly

For long term action, 1) Spend as little time as possible in artificial urban environments - go out and be in nature as much as you can - breath fresh air and appreciate all the good it does to you 2) Walk, hike, swim, run, cycle in nature 3) Eliminate all processed, fried and sugary foods from your diet. 4) Eat only natural, organic, fresh vegetables, fruits, seafood, game meats, free range eggs and poultry 5) Look into your blood type and see what foods are best for you

There is much more you can do but the above will keep you busy for a while. This may require a total life style change. But then it may not. In any case, I am quite confident that if you implement the above, you will feel much better soon.
Wish you all the best

Thomas
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***I have cured myself of this bizarre, random, and painful syndrome, but I'm kind of embarrassed to say how and it was completely accidental. This is not a joke. I was never going to share this, but after reading all of these posts and the pain that other people have gone through and continue to go through over this, I decided to share my story. What happened to me is absolutely the truth and although a little embarrassing, I hope somehow it can help someone else.***

A few years ago, out of nowhere, I began to experience a severe electric shock/nerve type pain directly below my left knee cap, on the left side of my left knee, and down my left shin. It feels like how I imagine being tasered feels, except only on my left knee area. After telling my wife about this pain, she thought I was exaggerating, until she saw me react to an attack, then she thought I was having a heart attack. I immediately bent over, grabbed my knee (like that was going to do anything), and just held my breath until it went away. As the episodes continued to happen I tried different coping methods: Straightening out my leg, shaking it out, standing, sitting, trying to stomp (very difficult to do), pulling my knee in tightly, and just pounding on that part of my knee and shin with my fist, like a hammer. None of it worked.

As the attacks happened more and more, I wouldn't say that I got used to them, but I started to notice that sometimes I would get a little twitch or slight jolt a few seconds before the lightening strike. This didn't really help me much, because I knew what was coming and it still hurt just as bad, but at least I wasn't completely blindsided.

One particular time when I was.....masturbating online and very close to finishing, I felt that electric twitch in my knee, but it felt a little fainter. In retrospect, I'm not sure if it was actually fainter or if it just seemed that way because my focus was elsewhere. I didn't want to stop so close, but I also didn't want to have a nerve attack positioned like that. Too many things could seemingly go wrong. But I didn't act either way, I just kind of hung on that edge, hoping that the impossible would happen and I would be spared an attack (which had never happened once I gotten my tell-tale twinge) and I would get to finish.

But something must have happened in that teetering between those two places, because just when I thought I was going to get tased in the knee and it felt like my body tried to do it, it just didn't have the same force behind it and the attack on my knee fizzled, it was diluted, and powerless.
And not to sensationalize, but once I saw that I had a stay of execution, so to speak, I tried to resume. Something unpleasant was still trying to happen at my knee, I could feel the twitching, but the attack couldn't seem to take hold because of, it would seem, the bigger party elsewhere. It went on like that, a sort of fight between the two locales, until I finished.

And ever since that day, over two years ago, I haven't had a single attack (knock on wood!).

It's funny and kind of embarrassing, but it's the truth. I have no idea why it happened like that, but it did and I consider myself extremely lucky and I'm obviously very happy about it. The timing of the event, which seemed at first to be unfortunate, could have been what caused the attacks to stop.
I'm not sure of the science behind it or what actually caused what, but I suffered from severe attacks like everyone here has described, and after this incident happened I have never had one since. Never. Not even a twitch.

This is the honest to God's truth and I hope that somehow my story helps others.




  
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When I was given Naproxen, it did nothing to prevent my attacks which are like yours. Gabapentin (Neurontin) is the only medicine which I feel has helped me. I ended up taking the maximum dose of it for about a year. Then I was pain-free for a year and a half, and off the medicine for six months, but the shocks recently come back, so I'm starting with a low-dose again. The good new is: these shocks CAN go away for long periods of time.
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No matter how embarrassing it was for you to write and for the rest of us to read your post, thank you.
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I, too, warn people in advance that I might start thrashing around without notice. I have to tell the beautician, the gynecologist, have to sit in the back at any public event, etc. It is SO embarrassing and devastating. Please see my posts below.
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Happened to me and my lupus panel came back abnormal..
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Hi Pilar44.  I had the same thing.  horrible like electrical voltz shot into my knee out of know where . I felt perfectly fine otherwise.   I just went to the doc.    I actually have something called.  brusitis of the hip.  something about the hip muscle was inflammed and because of it it was sending triggers to my knee..    Trigger points .   I was treated first with high dose antiinflamitory meds and if that does not work I am told I may need a shot of cortizone in my hip muscle.     you should also google what trigger points cause pain in knee.  It is very fasinating.     None the less that was why I had these .  I hope it helps
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Has anyone tried putting a TENS unit on the affected area ?
Holland
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i know some of these comments are really old but i read through most of this thread yesterday because i was having repeated, sharp, stabbing, electric pains in my right knee all freaking day (it started at night). By reading your comments, i was able to figure out that it was likely due to a nerve being pinched in my back. i did a lot of stretching and the second i got home from work, i slapped an IcyHot patch on my knee and wrapped it with an ACE bandage so it would not get dislodged. i slept with it wrapped up and slept throught the whole night pain-free. i woke up to no pain and thus far have not had a single recurrance (touch wood). The joint and the muscles around my right knee still feel a little stiff and sore but that's likely due to the gorram thing spasming all day yesterday. When i get home, i'm going to use one more IcyHot patch and wrap it again. Hopefully this might help some of you.
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i've had the same needle sharp pain in my right kneecap for about 8 months now, the pain doesn't last for long but it worries me. I'm a 37 yr old who drinks alcohol regularly on weekends when i go out to bars with friends. Haven't had a doctor checkup for years don't ask me why but i always put it aside and say i'll go soon and never go.  I was talking to a friend of mine who was a heavy drinker and developed a kidney dissorder, after that he became very sick and spent thosands of dollars trying to find a cure here in los angeles ca the doctors told him there was no cure as his dissorder was well advanced. so he went to mexico and tried to find a cure thru nature herbs and doctors, he's cured now and when he came back to the U.S. and went to the doctor for a check up the doctors didn't believe him. because of his condition he became very familiar with the immune system and how it works, thru his extensive research on natural medicine. so when i told him about my sudden needle sharp pain he told me right away to stop drinking alcohol, noy to eat red or pork meat, acid drinks such as dark soda and coffee and spicy foods, get plenty of rest and eat a healthy meal at all times. he said that such foods and drinks that i mentioned result in the rise of uric acid in the blood stream he did tell me that my problem was in early stages so to start doing the right thing to my body.  maybe that's in my case since i drink alcohol and drink lots of coca cola, it's called GOUT ATTACKS, you guys should also try doing some research on PROPOLIS which is a natural wonder for the immune system, many diseases and ailments. hope that little info helps someone in the future...
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I also have sharp pain in my knee. It comes randomly. After numerous tests it turned out to be slight swelling around the knee cap (patellae) and this affects the Patellar Ligament. I was prescribed Celebrex for one month, weekly physio and must wear a knee brace to keep the knee cap in place. Hope this helps.
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I may have a solution.  Strangest thing this knee pain.  I'm a 47 year old Male I've had this same lighting bolt type pain out of no where lasting approximatley ten to fifteen seconds.  This started about a month and a half ago and it would drive me crazy.  Not matter what I did nothing helped.  I've looked on line like everyone else and found no solutions, only other people suffering the same problem.  Well funny thing, last sunday when I was watching football, out of no where the pain zapped my knee again I started rubbing it, no relief pain went away after 15 seconds as usual but then it came back 5 minutes later.  I was so pissed I stood up and started shaking my leg like I'm kicking a shoe off.  I did it several times until the pain went away.  I haven't had pain in my knee for over a week now and still counting.  Not sure it's a cure but let me tell you it's been a relief to go at least a full week without that damn sharp shooting pain.
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I began having this pain in my left knee about 6 weeks ago. It started out once a day, then multiple times a day. The electri type shock would happen anytime anywhere . I went to the dr. And had a MRI, which showed nothing. On Christmas night it happened about 20 times while sleeping. The next day I decided to stop my medications and see what happened. After 2 days the pain has stopped. I am trying to figure out which one is causing my problem. I think it is losartan a cholesterol med that is causing my problem. I am also taking glyburide for diabetes and pravastatan for high blood pressure. I have been pain free for 10 days now. I don't know if this is everyone's problem but it ha helped me.
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This is a late reply to this question and may not help you but may help other readers now.  It may or may not be every ones reason.  I too have this pain but have been diagnosed with a popliteal cyst AKA Baker's cyst.  I believe it was in direct response to arthritis in the knee, and/or some possible damage to the medial meniscus.  This cyst is about 1" by 2 1/2 ", and was touching on a nerve as it either moved while moving my leg or due to the degree of swelling in the cyst at the time of pain.  It may wax and wain with time but feels like my skin is burning and being literally separated from my posterior knee.  I have known something was wrong in the back of my knee area for some time because I felt like  something was physically preventing me from kneeling and sitting on my heels on that leg but was not diagnosed until years later when pain became acutely worse.  I have not had it aspirated or removed "yet" but am seriously thinking of resorting to begging.  The new additional pain, other than the shocks, has been cyclical and intense at times for a week and a half now even on narcotics and NSAIDS.  I am 60 and have had a few falls onto my knees years ago and in the past 2 years.  Hope this helps someone.  
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This is exactly what I have experienced! Sometimes if I think of the pain it starts. Sometimes it is a slow build up, but other times it is acute.  The first time I had an episode was at work. Later at home I notice a large bruise which I received from a surfing injury the previous day. After the first episode, I was symptom free for awhile with occasional flairs until I recently started to workout again. There are structures in this region which I could of injuried:the popliteal neurovascular bundle, popliteus muscle and/or popliteofibular ligament.  It could be myofascial pain or nerve pain from the trauma. If the trauma and subsequent reparative fibrosis is very small without significant inflammatory response then there is almost no way to visualized this imaging. When the pain occurs there is nothing I can due to soothe (massage) it:(

I
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OK this is exactly what is happening to me too!  I can’t believe there is no clear diagnosis for this yet!  This is sooo painful and it just frick’in drops me.  During an attack I look like Fonzie in the Happy Days episode when he is tries walking after his famous motorcycle jump (only with lots of cursing).  I would rather have my tooth drilled without Novacaine than have this pain!

I went to my doctor and he ordered an MRI only to have my Insurance deny that because he did not get an X-ray or Physical Therapy first.  So I went to an acupuncturist and that helped at first but it came back.

I noticed a pattern in that the attacks happens after sitting for long periods of time and inactivity (working at my desk, watching TV in bed, driving).  I had a crappy mattress so I changed that to a firm mattress.  I replaced my office chair. And I joined a gym and work out 5 days a week now.  I work with a trainer and with extra  focus on strengthening the muscles in my leg.  I have not had another attack since doing these things (been two months now), and I was having the attacks about every couple of days.

This problem is not Gout! I do think this problem has something to do with the Piriformis as described in some of earlier posts but my doctor says he has never seen Piriformis Syndrome specifically attack the knee???

Whatever this problem is, I am sure glad it is gone now.
I hope this post helps any of you out there with this pain because it is absolutely awful.
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Hi all,

Went to the neurologist today and have an update w a diagnosis: she said it was most likely peripheral neuropathy. She's prescribing me medicine to help alleviate the "shocks"...it's similar to gabapentin, but has a component to it that will help me sleep at night, so ill take it before bed. Hope it helps and hope this post helped for those who have no diagnosis yet. She did said that there is no diagnosis for the type of pain we are all experiencing, but there is medication that can help. So don't wait- go see a neurologist and get some medicine to help!
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Hi! In hoping you're still checking this forum-is your pain still gone since you obgyn appointment?  
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I was just reading the post- I did Gabapentin too so I think we're on the same track!
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Don't know if you're still suffering but someone contacted me about the attacks in the knee and I'm the one who had them just in my knee, then had a shot under x ray to address piriformous syndrome-   I'm back to reading the posts!!   Even if your doctor thinks that it's rare, so what.  Life with attacks is miserable.  I'd try it, My doctor said this was the last resort and he didn't think it would work- I did 2 mris and numerous lab work ups, and it's the piriformous shot that worked, and I'm 1 year attack free!!!!!!

Goodluck!
Pippa70
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Yes!! The medicine I'm on definitely helps, but not 100%. I'm taking 10 mg of amitriptyline...it makes me slightly groggy, but the first four days on it I was shock free! Today I had a small shock in the morning, so I may have to go up to 20 mg. how is the gaba working for you? What was thr diagnosis you were given? Did I see you also had a shot for piriformous?
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Hi again,

I was initially given the diagnosis of Shingles and l think that';s when they gave me the gabapentin.  My bottle says 300 mg.  It made me feel sick and dizzy and I felt that it worked initially but then I was back to square one.  Of course I didn't have shingles- my doctors were all just stumped; I got blood work for about 19 different things but all came back clear, then I saw neurologists and knee specialists.  In the end it was my husband who researched the piriformous syndrome and we pushed for the shot in the bum under xray and it worked.  My doctor said THANKS for the research and she'll remember it next time.  There are HUNDREDS of people out there with my same kind of symptoms...  So yes, my dr confimed piriformous syndrome and with  only knee symptoms.
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Thank you so much for sharing all that. I am going tomorrow for an EMG with my neurologist and I am going to tell her about your post. Maybe I should push for the cortisone shot as well- it can't hurt to try right?  I am so, so happy for you that you have found relief to this pain. It's been two months for me and it's already controlling my life. Thank you again! I'll keep everyone posted w the EMG.

My neurologist had told me during my last visit she thought it was peripheral neuropathy and I guess now we are in the process of trying to see what's causing it. Ugh. Anyway, thank you again...I'm talking to her about the shot!
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I am so happy to help- the attacks were absolutely horrid and a solution to me isn't taking pills for the rest of my life!!
Goodluck today and let me know how it goes!!!!!
Pippa
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Had the EMG done- a lot less painful than I anticipated! Everything came back normal - the neurologist said no nerve or muscle damage, so she lifted the original diagnosis of peripheral neuropathy. I'm so happy and thankful it's nothing serious, but feel so frustrated about having no diagnosis. I brought up the cortisone shot you had mentioned, and she didnt really give it much discussion. I think I'm going to call her and push for it. Even if it doesn't help, at least it's one more thing to cross off the list. For now, it seems like the meds are all I have to rely on :(

Thank you again for your replies and sharing your story. Ill keep sending updates!!
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Six months of hours per day extreme electric shocks to the knee.  Spent a ton of money on doctors with no relief.  I finally found my solution.  It's Capzasin HP cream rubbed on my knee and lower back three times a day. It took about a week of every day use to finally stop the attacks.  I don't miss a day and I'm pain free.  I love it!  

The burn gets less and less with use.  Wash your hands well and don't get it in your eyes or you'll be running and screaming to the faucet.
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Hi. I have exactly the same symptoms as the original post: excruciating sharp pain just outside to the left of my left knee cap that lasts about 10-15 seconds. It happens randomly, without a trigger, and occurs while sitting, lying down, standing walking, sleeping, etc. without warning (just as in the original post). Has anyone had any luck figuring out the cause? I've seen a couple people mention piriformus syndrome and they say they had some luck treating that. My orthopedist diagnosed me with a torn meniscus and an impinging synovium. I had surgery to correct those, but these symptoms persist. Can anyone help?
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Did you ever get this resolved? I'm having the same problem.
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Hi there .I have been having  same sort of pain everyone else seems to be posting. The knee has sharp stabbing pains that come and go and are unbearable. I just saw a top notch orthopedic Dr. ( he treats the Notre Dame football players) this am and he did an exray of my knee just to be sure and said my knees were perfect. It all stems from my back and it is a nerve root irritation that starts in lower back and follows the nerve down the leg to the knee and my pain actually goes down into the calf. (feels like something is crawling around in my calf). All depends what nerve root is irritated. Rest. ice/heat therapy and 800 mg. motrin 3 x a day. Need to get it to calm down and it should go away. If not I could get a pain block ( which I have had before) and it did help. hope this helps anyone with the same issue as me.
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i thought im the only crazy here cause i have this problem too and when i explained it to my doc she just give me that look like im crazy.did some tests everything is normal.im still ? about this problem i just like  to know what it is and what causes it.
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Hi all, For several months I've been experiencing the same shocking electrically zaps to my left knee cap, as most people on this thread. Now just below my knee cap and surrounding area, and partially up the side of that same leg, has been sore and tender (It feels bruised). I don't see any real sure diagnosis here, but I think knowledge is power and will be helpful if people keep posting and offering their results and progress. I am praying for all on this thread, and trust that God will heal, restore, and provide answers. Will visit here periodically. Peace
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Sounds to me like you have sciatica. Have you been to a doctor?
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I have this too. I fell at work about 15 feet and hit my knee about 2 years ago. I just started weight lifting 7 months ago, and I have high blood pressure. I think it may have to do with blood pressure. although when I had an MRI it said that I had liquid on my knee, but there was nothing they could do about it. I was just searching to see what this pain was and if it could be related to hbp or maybe bc i started lifting weights...
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I'm 28 and have been playing sports for 23 years now.  About a week ago, I was at my hockey game, warming up, and all of a sudden as I was about to go to the bench, the same sharp, electric shock sort of pain hit me for the first time for about 5-10 seconds and then again almost right after.  I've never had any knee injuries or health problems.  It has come back a few times since that day.  I've set up a doctors appointment but from all the responses here it sounds like everything is might come up normal with no solution.  I'm hoping for the best and will post with whatever results I get.
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Ive had 3 patellar realignment surgeries on my left knee. I never got the sharp electric pain until I had my 4th surgery on my right knee. Now i get really sharp very painful shooting pain just below my knee cap on the far outter left side. I also get it through my graph on my right side. Ive been to 4 different surgeons and doctors and physiotherapists and nothing has been resolved. Pain killers dont do anything for me to relieve pain. When I get pain it last for about what seems forever ( probably 4-10 seconds) it comes and goes throught rest of day. Unfortunately it also prevents me from being able to climb a flight of stairs. Any pressure onto knee cap sends me overboard with pain.
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Thank you for all great posts, guys. It seems to me that it is like a new awful disease that doctors have no idea about..yet. I have almost the same problem-- a pain in the left side of my right knee, between the leg and the knee, that is like "Electric Shock". As everyone said here, it is sudden and random, and it could happen anytime without any previous sign. However, I've been noticing that this pain comes especially when I'm laying off in my bed, but it seems that it is getting worse over the time. It is really weird, and it just starting a month a go or so. I don't know what the hell is this, but your stories inspired me to try to find a solution. I will see a doctor, and see how it goes.  
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this happened to me earlier this evening as i write i can still feel my leg is not 100% strange twitching sensation without the twitch. if i try to put any weight on my knee the sensation builds. so im nervous about any sudden movement, im very active person and have alot to get through in a day normally. but lately over last week have done alot less. is it possible the muscles around my knee joint have weakend slightly. and this is a reaction to e putting pressure o my knee. but i wasn't doing anything awkward or stretching at time just walked into sitting room and picked cup of tea from counter which is at lower chest height. definitely i wouldn't wan't a reocurrance of this working with power tools. it seems a very common issue was very surprised to see so many posts. i wish you all well with this    
ive never had a single injury to a muscle or joint ever im 41 years young . nobody seems to have realy put there finger on the cause or a remedy, will look forward to any solutions.  
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Hi fellow suffers,
I am brand new to this, having received my 'electric shock' like pains in bed last night and again today sitting at my desk.  mine is on the right side of my left knee, not under the kneecap (patella).  I fortunately have no knee related sports injuries, no diabetes etc and am over 50.  When the shock passes, the knee feels perfectly fine in a minute. But when it hit, I was gasping for breath for a few seconds.  

I am wondering if it is related to something local in the knee, or can it be a referred pain from the back . . .

Thanks for your posts, since I know it is not just me.  
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Thanks to Elle for the tip regarding 'piriformis syndrome' as a possible cause of the shock-like paid in the knee.  I looked through wikipedia, and found a reference to 'fat wallet syndrome' - They say that sitting on a 'fat wallet' can induce this condition and cause sciatic pain affecting the leg, without being caused by a spinal disk problem.   This could be it!  My new job involves a long commute, sitting in the car, and I put my wallet in my left rear pocket - and the pain hits my left knee.  

I will put my wallet in my briefcase to avoid this possible cause and report back to this blog in a couple of weeks.  Thanks to everyone for their posts!
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I've been struggling with this electric shock pain since 2006 and have been following this post for the last several years while going to various drs.  It seems the consensus from my research, drs, and this post is it's a nerve issue, most likely a nerve entrapped in muscle.  My hypothesis is that it doesn't show up on emgs and nerve conduction tests because the actual nerve is fine.  So unless they do the test at the exact moment it hurts (and you stay still for that), it won't show up.  So then the issue is finding which muscle is entrapping the nerve which could be different for everyone and could be in multiple spots anywhere from your back to the furthest point you feel pain.  I believe a really good massage therapist found the cause of my pain in my knee and inner thigh is my psoas and iliacus muscle in my abdomen which nobody checked before. Pushing on certain spots on my belly replicates the "random" pain I had been getting.  She was able to feel pellet sized knots on those muscles at the points where pressure caused pain in my knee. Because I've had this problem for so many years, I now have right and weak muscles in my leg that need to be addressed with physical therapy. All drs have identified those weaknesses but that was not the CAUSE of the pain. I'm not cured yet but this is the first thing that I've tried that actually makes sense and feels like it's helping so I wanted to share.  Good luck to all.  I will check back for more ideas from you and to update on progress.
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I believe the sharp shooting, lightening-like pain in the back of my leg (behind my knee) has something to do with my Lyme Disease.  Whether it's direct cause is nerve damage, cyst, clot, muscle twitches, cramps etc Lyme Disease is at the root of it.  Many of you have described symptoms of Lyme Disease.  It is endemic.  IGeneX have one of the most sensitive tests for Lyme Disease.
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Thank you to everyone that posted on this site.  As in the original post, I also have these severe electric shocks in my right knee just left of the knee cap in the middle of the indentation.  Not the wimpy 110volt kind of shock, I'm talking the 220volt that makes you jump-off-the-sofa, fly-out-of-bed-and grab-your-knee kinda shocks! Excrutiating pain.  I went to the ER, they took X-rays that showed nothing, gave me Toridol, and sent me home clueless.  The next morning my family doctor said I had a strained tendon, gave me a shot of Cortisone and I thought it was the miracle drug.  Felt great for three weeks, not one shock.  Then the Cortisone shot wore off and I was back to square one.  This time the pain was less severe and only for about 3 to 5 seconds rather than the 15 to 30 seconds like three weeks earlier.  I read on this site about the drug Gabapentin easing their pain so I saw my doctor the next afternoon.  He moved my leg in every possible position trying to get my tendon to act up and when I told him I had absolutely no pain he was puzzled.  Unsure what to do, he decided not to give another Cortisone shot and gave me a prescription for the Gabapentin.  The first day, still with limited sleep due to the shocks, it did nothing.  The second day was better with fewer shocks and less severe.  The third day I could tell the drug was working, the shocks were more like 50volt shocks and only about six times the whole day.  By the fourth day of taking this drug I had no shocks but a little tenderness around my knee.  It's only been five days now but I'm extremely happy you people wrote in with your advise or I would still be in pain.  I am scheduled for an MRI this week but I don't think it will resolve anything.  I think the problem is nerve related and the pain will return when the meds run out.  I'll keep you posted when I find out anything new.  
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Yes please definitely keep us posted. Glad to hear that the Gabepentin seems to be working!
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My 50 year old son's pain began with front of thigh less than a week ago, then it moved to butt and low back two days ago, with terrible shooting pains. Today, after being 'out and about' for hours yesterday including standing for several hours, he has extreme shooting pains above his knee, which is a different location from these posts.

Just like these posts, the extreme pain lasts a short time and comes back whether he is sitting, standing, lying down.

I researched sciatic nerve sites yesterday, but think he is in too much pain to consider stretching or strengthening exercises yet. He has no insurance for an expensive cortisone shot under X ray...

thank you all for this post!
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Hi Pippa. My attcks have largely (but not completely) gone away. I went from 3-4 attacks per day to now just a couple time a month. They are always brought on by extended periods of sitting. I have pretty much changed my life similar to the way the post from "ehlet" described on this forum. I think he may be correct about the nerve flow or possibly the encapsulated nerve theory by "posey".

Either way the solution for me was less sitting and more moving. Eating healthier and losing some weight didn't hurt either. I now look at this problem more like nature's own personal trainer ...with a cattle prod...letting me know when it is time to get up and move.
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Correction: it was "shopa" that had the interesting theory on encapsulated nerve. I am going to see if my massage therapist can trigger the attcks by hitting the right spot.
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I recently had this terrible experience that many of you are describing - the electric shock pain behind the knee.

In my case, it appears I had a piriformus muscle spasm.  This muscle is in your butt and can go into spasm from lifting/twisting.  Since the sciatic nerve runs under or through the piriformus muscle, a muscle spasm can inflame the sciatic nerve and cause this exact sort of pain.

I have been having acupuncture treatments (just 2 so far) and the pain is gone.  I also researched stretches for this muscle to prevent future spasm.  I believe this may be the solution for many of you and encourage you to try acupuncture.
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Success!  6 months and no more 'electric shock'  pains in my left knee.  The cure for me?  Taking my wallet out of my back pocket!  I found that there is a medical basis for the 'fat wallet syndrome' which results from pressure on a nerve in the hip, and generates the unpredictable sharp, breath-taking pains in the side of the knee.

In general, when it comes to the spine, knees and hips, I suggest trying all types of physical therapy and life style adjustments first before moving on to surgery.  
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