I have had a stabbing pain in the left side
Pinching of nerve a possibility.
Welcome and thanks for your query.
Your pain is like a neuritic pain which occurs with the pinching of nerves. The description of the site is suggestive of pinching of the upper cervical nerves. Have you had any imaging studies like Xray or MRI. Also if you don't get much sun exposure, a blood vitamin D level may be helpful. A low vitamin D can impair bone health and cause increased wear and year.
If your doctor would prescribe Neurontin 300 mg to be taken at bedtime, it may help regarding the pain.
Do get back to me with your input.
My gut feeling is that it might be in some way connected to a sinus issue. This morning I used some Afrin nasal spray and although it may be a coincidence the frequency of the pain has lessened to 15-20 minutes between occurrences. What are your thoughts on this? Also what would be the first diagnostic test you would suggest? Thank you
Thank you for the information.
Sorry for the delay in replying as I was traveling.
If you were feeling better after the nasal spray and the effect continues, the pain may be related to the nasal congestion and possible sinus infection. An X-ray of the sinuses and a white blood cell count would be helpful to know if there is an infection.
The pain at the back of the head is an unusual site for a sinus pain. The pain from pinching on the nerve as it emerges from the spine is a common cause of such a pain . The X-ray of the cervical spine often shows features suggestive of cervical spondylosis and muscle spasm. MRI of the cervical spine would be more informative.
If steroids produce adverse reaction, they are better avoided. They being immunosuppressive , can flare up infections also.
Were you able to try the Gabapentin ( Neurontin) I had suggested?.