Trigeminal Neuralgia Community
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Avatar universal

TN worse after MRI

I am currently being worked up for TN after having eye, ear and facial pain for about 3 yrs.  The pain is on both sides, however, it has been much worse on the left, until day before yesterday when I had and MRI of my head.  My hearing has been acutely sensitive since the sypmtoms first began and growing more so as time passes.  However, after the MRI, even with extra precautions to block the noise, I felt as if the sounds were reverberating through my head from both ears and when I got out of the machine, I had temporary veritgo and felt as if my brain was scrambled.  The pain shooting through the affected areas of my face were much worse, esp on the right, which has typically been my "good" side.
This "worse" condition was awful yesterday, and somewhat better today.  The strange thing about this is the pronounce worsening of the symptoms on my "good" side after the MRI.  
Has anyone else had a similar experience after an MRI?  (BTW, it was read as normal).  
Also, does TN even show up on MRI?
And, (this question might need to be a separate one) do any of you have an auto immune disease that has been suggested by your doc as the cause of the TN?  
Thank you to anyone who responds.  I am ready to do something to control this affliction, because it is seriously cramping my style!  
Thank you again.  
3 Responses
Avatar universal
I've never heard of an MRI causing symptoms to worsen. So sorry you're dealing with that. I have MS and get MRIs about every two years.

MRIs do not always show blood vessel/vein compressions that can cause TN. They are used in the diagnosis process to look for brain tumore, MS, etc that can also cause TN pain.  Do you know if this was a thin slice MRI?  Also called Trigeminal Neuralgia protocol?

MS can cause TN and while it's not always the case, MS TN can be bilateral.

Keep a pain journal. Diagnosis of TN is ruling out everything else and by the patient's description of the symptoms.

If you have a large teaching hospital nearby, see if they have a Facial Pain clinic. TN is considered 'rare' so lots of docs have very little experience with it.

It can be controlled by anti-seizure meds. There are also a variety of surgeries that can give relief, though not a cure. There are also alternatives. Some people report relief from acupuncture or a specialized type of chiropractic.

Try and get your pain controlled by meds first. Then it might be easier to take your time to decide how you want to proceed.

Take care
Avatar universal
Thank you so much nancy99n for your response.  The MRI was a thin slice and was read as normal by the radiologist, however, the neurologist whom I will see for the 2nd time on Monday prefers to read his own, so I am taking him a disc.  
I am convinced my that my reaction to that MRI was the result of my exquisitely sensitive hearing.  Since the facial, head and eye pain have gotten so much worse, my tolerance for any loud noise has decreased in proportion.  
The original diagnosis of TN was made by my rheumatologist (I have psoriatic arthritis, too), who then referred me to this neurologist.  However, my rheumy started me on gabapentin first and it has been a major help so far.  I do believe I could go up on the dose, though and will discuss that with my neuro when I see him on Monday.  And, I have been keeping a pain journal since I last saw him, which has clarified a lot of aspects about the intensity, frequency, and areas of the pain.
Thank you so much again.
485259 tn?1519047026
Hi  I just read your comment on your noise sensitivity. That is the case for me as well and I could see that loud noise from the MRI setting you off for sure. I had not thought of that noise when I first read your post, but you are right!
I cannot go to concerts or even loud restaurants anymore, even a tv or radio too loud will be enough some days to send me over into an episode.

Good luck with everything, I am glad that the gabapentin has been helping you and you are keeping your journal.  
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