Does any one have postherpatic neuralgia caused by Herpes simplex (cold sore virus)?

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A number of months ago I was diagnosed with a mild form of trigeminal neuralgia . I suffer from pain in the right hand side of my face which feels like an electric shock. It is triggered when I brush my teeth, drink cold fluids, blow my nose and my face can be very sensitive to touch. The pain only lasts a few seconds but happens many times a day and is really quite uncomfortable when it happens. Having spoken to several people with trigeminal neuralgia I am beginning to wonder if I have postherpatic neuralgia caused by Herpes simplex as I have never had shingles. Does anyone have a view on this please or has experience of postherpatic neuralgia caused by Herpes simplex?

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  • Posted

    There are many hits on Google which I think you'd find more satisfying than just one person writing here. But yes, I suffer from post-herpetic neuralgia. I had shingles 3 yrs ago; if you haven't had shingles, then your neuralgia (PHN) is caused by something else: multiple sclerosis patients often have trigeminal neuralgia (TN); aging is another cause; tumors; or simply genetic or even random damage to the nerve sheaths.

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    • Posted

      Also, Herpes Zoster, which is shingles, is present in the body from childhood and is a result of someone having chicken pox. It sits in the body for many years, and when there is a breakdown of the immune system or a stress overload, the virus kicks in and sores appear along a nerve band somewhere on the body, the most common being the ribcage or the back. The pain is excruciating, and in tests done by the Mayo Clinic, it was shown that those with extreme cases suffered pain 9 times higher than pain experienced when giving birth. I will attest to that: I was alternately "stabbed" by a huge, sharp knife (repeatedly) -- that's what the pain felt like; that was "alleviated" by electric shocks jolting my body; that was "alleviated" by ground glass coursing through my veins; that was "alleviate" by fire inside my body, top to toe.

      Yes, I'm serious.

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  • Posted

    TN is supposed to be miserable, I don't know the specific symptoms but there are other groups for people with TN. Just to clear up something as there are several times of herpes. Herpes simplex, i.e. cold sores are NOT what causes shingles and then subsequent PHN. Only herpes zoster causes PHN. Some people get shingles without any rash, so it's not diagnosed. However, when one gets shingles, the pain is excruciating. I don't know if you can get a mild case of shingles and then PHN. People that I know that have PHN had very obvious pain, then the nerve damage.

    Your symptoms are similar to allodynia, or are allodynia. That's extreme reaction to a light stimulus which can cause pain. I get that with my PHN. I don't know what other conditions causes it. My gut feeling is that no, you don't have PHN, but I don't know what's causing your symptoms.

    As one last thought, some meds that are given for TN or nerve pain like shingles/PHN can cause pain too. Are you on medications? Otherwise, try your doctor or a different doctor, good luck.

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  • Posted

    Babs is right, and I forgot to mention that as well: Herpes simplex is a cold sore; it's universes away from Herpes zoster, which is a nerve virus, not a "skin rash." Yes, there are varying degrees of severity, as much as there are varying degrees of recovery. And like I said, Google it. Don't rely on a random question being posted that contains incorrect information

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  • Posted

    Thank you both for your replies. I have spent yet more time on the internet and have come to the conclusion that I could well have a mild form trigeminal neuralgia caused by Herpes simplex type 1. I am currently taking aciclovir to see if that alleviates the symptoms. Thanks again for your time.

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