Painful Medical Conditions

Unfortunately, many painful medical conditions can also be the most difficult to diagnose. When you become accustomed to a certain level of pain, seeking treatment may seem inconvenient. If you’re unsure whether you’re experiencing temporary pain, or the symptoms of a medical condition, the best option is always to seek out professional advice.

Here are some of the most painful medical conditions and their symptoms.

Postherpetic Neuralgia
This condition occurs in about 10% of individuals with shingles. The disease, most commonly found in older adults, may cause residual pain after the rash disappears. The chickenpox virus causes shingles.  This microbe lays dormant in the spinal cord after infection with the potential to reactivate in the future. Postherpetic neuralgia is often described as a burning nerve sensation.

Inflamed Bladder
An inflamed bladder, or Interstitial Cystitis, causes a constant burning pain in the groin and abdominal areas. Those who suffer from the condition may urinate up to 60 times a day. Many patients find relief with a combination of physical therapy, nerve stimulation and anti-inflammatory medication.

• Some sufferers may be mistakenly diagnosed with a UTI because of similar symptoms, but an inflamed bladder often causes more widespread pain and a urine culture shows no bacteria.

Post-Surgical Pain
While surgeries aim to correct a condition, there are also associated risks with every procedure, including nerve damage. Nerve damage can result in a variety of pain, from burning sensations to a throbbing discomfort.

• In more common procedures, like a mastectomy or cardiac surgery, patients who experience long-term post-surgical pain can be as high as 50%.

Post-surgical pain is often mild and lessens, or completely disappears, over time. Those who experience post-surgical pain chronically are susceptible to other conditions including tachycardia (fast heart rate), hypertension, and poor wound healing. Seeking treatment for your pain as soon as possible is the best way to prevent these long-term effects.

Kidney Stones
Kidney stones are one of the most common painful conditions treated in urgent cares and ERs. This is in part because most kidney stones go undetected until they move into the ureter, which causes severe pain as the muscles contract around the stone.Kidney stones can cause intense, radiating lower back pain.

If you experience sudden intense back, stomach and groin pain, frequent or painful urination, nausea and vomiting or blood in the urine, you could have a kidney stone that has moved into the ureter or bladder. Small stones may pass without notice, but larger ones frequently require pain medication.

Sciatica results from one of your longest nerves, the sciatic nerve, becoming pinched or inflamed. A herniated disc is often the cause and can radiate pain through the rest of your body, which makes diagnosis difficult. The sciatic nerve runs from your low back to your foot and the pain from the condition often manifests in the leg as a deep, throbbing sensation. This can make even simple tasks, like walking or lifting objects, incredibly painful.

Horton’s Syndrome
Also referred to as “cluster,” or “suicide headaches,” Horton’s Syndrome causes an intense shooting sensation usually localized to one side of the face or behind the eye. The pain is debilitating and comes on suddenly, lasting anywhere from 15 minutes to hours.

• Some experts and sufferers from the condition agree that cluster headaches are the worst pain you can possibly experience from a medical condition.
Because the pain can be difficult to describe, many of those suffering from the disease are misdiagnosed with migraines or severe sinus congestion. Physical symptoms can include drooping of the face on the affected side and teary eyes. Sufferers have found relief through oxygen therapy, steroids and injected medications.

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, seek the treatment of a medical professional. If you can’t get into your pcp feel free to come to ExpressMD as we are open 7 days a week.  The quicker your condition is diagnosed, the quicker we can determine the cause and address your pain.