Neurology Forum
This expert forum is not accepting new questions. Please post your question in one of our medical support communities.
Avatar universal


Hello.  I am a 33 yr old female.  I have had issues for 3 1/2 yrs with:

-burning sensations on my skin that come and go (my face sometimes feels like it's inflamed but, no redness or anything)

-hypersensitivity all over my body when touched or brushing up against something

-sensitivity to hot water on my hands to where the hot water just stings SO bad (past 2 yrs.) - the sun really burns (HEAT - not sunburn) my skin sometimes too

-unexplainable shooting pains in my arms and legs that feel like they have been stuck in an icechest for a few minutes

-pains around my fingernails as if i've cut them or they are raw (very odd)

-outer thigh pain on my left thigh that feels like it's been cut or something

I had a brain MRI in an open machine in August 2003, a c-spine MRI in a closed machine in June 2002, and I just had another brain MRI in a 3.0 Tesla MRI machine w/ and w/o contrast in August of this year.  All results were normal.  I also and an EMG of my arms and legs which was normal.  All normal blood work in 2003.

The neurologist (MS specialist), for whatever reason, does not see a need for a spinal MRI or an LP.  He says that I do not have anything neurological going on and he thinks that it's psychological.  

I can understand were stress/anxiety could cause sensory problems but, I don't understand how it can make my feet hurt when I get up in the mornings and walk on them - or how it could make my whole body ache like I have the flu sometimes.

What would you suggest if I were your patient?  Does MS sound unlikey to you?

4 Responses
Avatar universal
I cannot give a clinical diagnosis over the internet, unfortunately, so my advice is limited and should not supplant another formal opinion

There is no clear indication that you have a primary neurological disease by your symptoms. Common neurological symptoms that might indicate a neurological problem include headache, visual loss, difficulty with language or slurred speech, double vision, weakness or numbness on one side of the body, or clumsiness on one side of the body. If you developed one of theses symptoms, a furhter investigation may be warranted. But with an already normal MRI and EMG, neurological disease is unlikely. The symptoms are more suggestive of a rheumatological or connective tissue problem - allodynia (hypersnesitive ot stimuli), photosensitivity, pain on walking, etc. The only neurological issues that may need to be tested for include syphilis and HIV.
Avatar universal
This comment may be a few days too late so you won't even read it but still... just wanted to say - do make an appointment to see a good rheumatologist (goes along with what CCF Neuro said).  But make sure the rheumatologist deals with Fibromyalgia along with the connective tissue diseases (BOTH)  and BELIEVES Fibromyalgia is real too!  I went to the Cleveland Clinic couple years ago for at least many of the symptoms you describe; I was then diagnosed with Fibromyalgia.  

Don't let doctors brush you off with it's all pyschological mumbo jumbo - too often (unfortunately!) that's the norm for doctors in cases where it is a female. Regardless of whether it is MS (I was tested at CCF for the similar symptoms and mine was not - good right!) or not, Fibromyalgia or not, connective tissue disease or not, or whatever, continuing pain should be addressed and not just brushed off as psychological.  The stress of not knowing or having doctors say it's all psychological (ie - all in your head), does make symptoms worse though =(  

Hope you get some answers so that you can maybe get some relief.

Avatar universal
I, too, experience epidsodic burning skin pain as well as muscle aches, fatigue and depression.  Symptoms come and go and I can't seem to correlate symptoms with anything.  Over the years I have been to a number of doctors, had MRI's and many different blood tests, etc.--all normal.  I never have felt as if any doctor has taken my concerns seriously and that is discouraging.  One doc told me I have fibromyalgia and he prescribed muscle relaxers that made me so dopey I quit taking them. He suggested mild exercise which didn't help.  I currently take Prozac which has alleviated the depression, but done nothing for the transient skin pain, muscle aches, or fatigue.  Ibuprophen, acetominophen nor aspirin have been any help either, especially for the burning skin sensation.  I'm glad this doesn't seem to be life threatening, but it sure is unpleasant. Even more frustrating is that I don't look "sick" so no one seems to understand when I have no energy or when I feel so physically uncomfortable I prefer to stay home.  I am motivated to do things, but this syndrome is robbing me of any  sponteneity.  If anyone has found relief, please share your information.
Avatar universal
I cannot help but notice that many of you have varied symptoms with no clear diagnosis. I went through the same thing, and after six months was given a diagnosis of Arnold Chiari Maloformation by a neurosurgeon.  In a nutshell, this is when your brain stem herniates into your spinal cavity, blocking the flow of cerebral spinal fluid and putting pressure on your central nervous system, thus causing many different systems to be affected.This is not a widely known disorder, however, its symptoms mimic many diseases, such as lupus, lyme, MS,  chronic fatigue syndrome, and fibromyalgia. I would urge those of you that have had a brain MRI to seek out a neurologist or neurosurgeon with experience in this field to rule out this condition. It is diagnosed by an MRI of the brain.I hope this helps some one. Good luck to you all.
Popular Resources
Find out how beta-blocker eye drops show promising results for acute migraine relief.
In this special Missouri Medicine report, doctors examine advances in diagnosis and treatment of this devastating and costly neurodegenerative disease.
Here are 12 simple – and fun! – ways to boost your brainpower.
Discover some of the causes of dizziness and how to treat it.
Discover the common causes of headaches and how to treat headache pain.
Two of the largest studies on Alzheimer’s have yielded new clues about the disease