Weird Burning Sensation
August 22, 2006 6:52 AM   Subscribe

Help me figure out what this weird burning/raw sensation is...

When I get a fever, I can usually tell because my skin becomes ultra sensitive. Anything that touches it causes it to feel raw and burning.

The closest I can compare it to is that maybe its like what would happen if you got a burn that affected your nerves only, not your actual skin. I figure when its associated with a fever that its just my internal body temperature doing weird things because its overheated.

BUT, sometimes I'll get it on parts of my body when I don't have a fever at all. It will last a few days (right now its on my right thigh, on the front) and then slowly dissipate. It's really bad because even clothing causes it to hurt.

Someone tell me... what is it?
posted by finitejest to Health & Fitness (9 answers total)
I wouldn't presume to say anything here for certainty but I think that deranged skin sensation is something that most of us have felt at times during an illness.

Given that you've experienced it before during a fever, is it possible that you have a low-grade fever now or at other times when the sensation is localized? Sometimes we can have some minor infective process going on and not have symptoms but yet have a slight increase in core temperature.

The other thing that comes to mind is stress. If you do in fact have an unknown slight fever, lack of sleep, too much work/study, caffeine and the general harrying of life then maybe weird skin sensations are a symptom of overdoing it on some or all of these fronts.
posted by peacay at 7:17 AM on August 22, 2006

Is there a rash? Have you ever had chicken pox? Maybe you've got shingles.

Is the location consistent? Does it (the pain) migrate? Is your whole body generally affected or is it most often localized, as with your upper thigh at present? You'll need to carefully observe your symptoms in order to help a doctor figure out what's going on.
posted by Mister_A at 7:35 AM on August 22, 2006

Yeah, I'll second Mister_A. I've had shingles, and that's exactly what it felt like. I still have lingering nerve pain from it, three years later, and it usually pops up when I'm sick or stressed.
posted by Zosia Blue at 8:06 AM on August 22, 2006

If it is shingles, go to the doctor NOW. A friend of mine has it now, and his wife told me that the treatments work best if they catch it early.

And you do not want this stuff in your eyes or ears.

Why are you still sitting there reading this? Go man, go!
posted by 4ster at 8:17 AM on August 22, 2006

No rash at all.

There's absolutely no outward symptoms of anything being wrong.

I have it happen every so often, and generally in different locations on my body. Sometimes back, sometimes leg, sometimes arm.
posted by finitejest at 9:09 AM on August 22, 2006

Not to keep harping on the shingles line, but I didn't have a rash, either. They caught it in time before a rash appeared, but the nerve pain still lingers.
posted by Zosia Blue at 9:33 AM on August 22, 2006

Finitejest, the way this thing moves around your body with no outwardly visible signs makes me think whatever's happening, it's happening not in your skin, but in your brain, or in your spinal cord.

I think you should start the process of working your way up the Great Chain of Medical Being toward a Neurologist, if that's an option open to you.

Assembling a chronological diary of the location of the burning patches might prove illuminating; if successive positions on your skin neighbor each other on the Sensory Homunculus, that could tend to indicate something going on in your brain; if the burning patches never cross the segments your body is divided into by your sensory spinal nerves, but the next location is in the next segment, that would point to your spine.
posted by jamjam at 10:47 AM on August 22, 2006

I hope you're still checking this thread!

I'm not a doctor nor have I consulted a doctor, but I've researched my own very similar symptoms on this here internet.

I've found my symptoms match the symptoms of Allodynia, specifically tactile or touch Allodynia.

"Allodynia means "other pain". It refers to:
* Pain from stimuli which are not normally painful

I'd be interested in hearing what a doctor says. if you take that route. Good luck!
posted by deathofme at 8:45 AM on August 23, 2006

I found this sorting out a folder of bookmarks today. Parts of it make the answers here attributing the problem to Shingles seem more credible to me.

Please let us know what happens, finitejest.
posted by jamjam at 11:07 PM on August 23, 2006

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