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Radiating and stabbing pain in the ear, jaw and temple. No sinus pain. What is wrong?

I have radiating and stabbing pain at my right ear, temple , jaw, cheekbone areas. Also those same areas are hypersensitive to even the slightest touch. This is second recurrence and it it day two of this round. Tylenol didn t touch it. Should I se a doctor or just give it more time? What do you think it could be. I have no sinus pain or pressure and no tooth ache. I m in otherwise great health
Asked On : Wed, 20 Mar 2013
Answers:  2 Views:  332
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General & Family Physician 's  Response

your symptoms relate to problem known as trigeminal neuralgia
Trigeminal neuralgia is a chronic pain condition that affects the trigeminal nerve, which carries sensation from your face to your brain. In this condition, even mild stimulation of your face — such as from brushing your teeth or putting on makeup — may trigger a jolt of excruciating pain.
You may initially experience short, mild attacks, but trigeminal neuralgia can progress, causing longer, more frequent bouts of searing pain.
Most cases of trigeminal neuralgia are believed to be caused by blood vessels pressing on the root of the trigeminal nerve. This is said to make the nerve transmit pain signals which are experienced as the stabbing pains of trigeminal neuralgia. However, experts are not completely sure of the cause. Pressure on the trigeminal nerve may also be caused by a tumor or multiple sclerosis.

Anticonvulsants like carbamazepine (Tegretol) andMuscle-relaxing agents such as baclofen (Gablofen) may be used alone or in combination with carbamazepine. Surgery in case medicines are not helping.

Must consult your physician before taking medicine

Best wishes
Answered: Wed, 20 Mar 2013
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General & Family Physician Dr. Divya Kuttikrishnan's  Response
Hi there,

Thanks for writing in.

Any inflammation in the neighbouring structures can give rise to the symptoms that you are currently experiencing. Dental caries,Sinusitis, Ear infection, Trigeminal neuralgia etc. Given the fact that you don't have any sinus pain or toothache, Trigeminal neuralgia is a possibility. It doesn't normally respond to tylenol.

I would advise you to visit your physician , who will take your history and examine you, and if it is a case of trigeminal neuralgia, the doc might prescribe you drugs like carbamezepine or gabapentin etc.

Meanwhile avoid trigger factors like exposure to cold breeze, touch on the face etc. Does it hurt when you chew/swallow your food?

Hope this advice helps.

Dr. Divya Kuttikrishnan
Answered: Wed, 20 Mar 2013
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