"Electric Shock" type pain in my scalp!

Posted by Deby @deby, Aug 17, 2011

It feels like someone is touching my scalp with an electric wire or prod. Like a “zap” and then it takes a few seconds to get over it. It happens 2 or more times per MINUTE! It lastes for a couple of days usually and when it goes away it takes a few more days for my scalp not to be sore. I don’t know how many times a year it occurs but when it does, like today, it drives me crazy. I walk around making weird faces and people stare at me. They think I have a headache or migrain but I don’t, the pain is only on my scalp not IN my head. Sometimes the shocks occur over and over for a minute, then go back to 2 or more times per minute. It’s the weirdest thing and I can’t wait for it to be over. I never know when it’s going to occur or what brings it on. Anyone ever heard of something like this?

@kay71

I had this and mine was caused from Effexor. I researched myself and stopped the drug then never had another brain zap again.

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Wow. Glad you got relief. I went to ER this morning and they did CT scan and blood work. Everything was clear. They gave me a cocktail of drugs they use for migraines and the pain subsided. Home now and getting them sporadically but not as intense. They said it was a variation of a migraine or a damaged or pinched nerve. Hopefully I’ll get some answers when I see neurologist.

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I just started having this too! It is the weirdest thing and makes me feel like I’m crazy. I get this sharp pain in the top, left side of my head. Almost like I am being electrocuted. It lasts a second or too but then my scalp is very sore to the point where if I part my hair there it really bothers me. Do you have any other medical issues? The reason I ask is because I had muscle weakness a year ago that is resolving and I’m scared this could be related some how.

Liked by alarsen828

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I also agree that it is not a migraine and only in my scalp.

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@alarsen828

I just started having this too! It is the weirdest thing and makes me feel like I’m crazy. I get this sharp pain in the top, left side of my head. Almost like I am being electrocuted. It lasts a second or too but then my scalp is very sore to the point where if I part my hair there it really bothers me. Do you have any other medical issues? The reason I ask is because I had muscle weakness a year ago that is resolving and I’m scared this could be related some how.

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No, I have zero medical issues. I feel like there is no answer.

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@chipp123

No, I have zero medical issues. I feel like there is no answer.

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What about neck problems?

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My electrical scalp ‘shocks’ seem to appear when I have sinus congestion. I usually Neti-pot and take a quarter or half a red Sudafed to get some relief- nasty zaps. I am 70 and these started this year. I may not even realize I have sinus issue but the zaps respond to the pill so I assume they must be related.

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Egads!so sorry for your pain. Are you on any pain meds to help you deal with this?

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@chipp123

No, I have zero medical issues. I feel like there is no answer.

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@chipp123

Hi Chip. I noticed your post and wondered how you were doing. Have you had any explanation as to the cause of the shocks and other pain symptoms?

Jim

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No. It's a mystery. I mostly wear hats these days and that seems to help.

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Yes I have the same exact thing.

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@mitch1847

Yes I have the same exact thing.

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Really? What happens to you?

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Hi Deby
You probably have Occipital Neuralgia. Make sure by getting MRI's, if you have Occipital Neuralgia it will not show up on pictures. My name is Julie, I have had it also since 2013. John Hopkins has a Synopsis on Diagnosing it and the Symptoms, treatments but they do not know everything about it, It feels like it will kill you but it is not fatal just miserable as you know.
Some of the things that work for me..when you have an episode. First, I am sorry for you.❤. It is a rare autoimmune disease that one in one hundred thousand people have, no one will understand at first even neurologists can misdiagnosis you. No cure as of yet but better than it was in 2013. People are more aware now..they have a clothing line for your scalp due too sensitivity too sound, light. Some can't read or watch much TV. Try smaller scenes wear sunglasses, nerve endings could be worn down..wear clean head covering (scarf, hat, whatever works when it hurts..Soft Neck Cushion helps me a lot takes pressure off cervical that headache s go up from C2 to too of scalp .
What works..for the headaches or nerve headaches (neuralgia) that can come up too seven at a time simultaneously. These headaches that come are Ice Pick, Tension, Migraine, Burning, burrowing, icing, regular headache, cold spots, crawling, inflammation headaches feels like a city lives in your head, swimming, stabbing, cutting, squeezing, etc..regular headache migraine medicine generally does not work…Caffeine however will bring down the inflammation helps a lot, Blending Celery and berries for juice for the burning headaches, the ice pic headaches cureall eat Chili hot, Jalapenos, yogurt for tummy, avocados are wonderful..your diet has too change anti inflammatory..What Occipital Neuralgia damage to your Cervical Spine Neck and the nerve causes numerous sensations that are very scarey. The shocks are nerves misfiring. The itching is blood getting through the pinched places actually good.
What works..❤ Massage, Muscle Relaxers, Organic Vitamins( D3, Alpha Omega) B12, ) preferably powdered organic vitamin..Good Neurologist preference also updated works at University Professor, Controlled Substance too sleep over through sensations and for anxiety..Clonazepam, Ativan..Neurosimulator look into..
What is bad for Occipital Neuralgia..I
Internet
Electric Light
Movies
Loud Noise
Odd Noise
Intense People or Pressure
Too much TV
Reading
Keep room dark like Migraine
No concerts
No loud church
But pray anyway trust God he will help you..Psalm 🙏91..
Extra note..Food that helps cont..Salmon, almonds, lime, chili, Blending a juice 3x week celery berry lime, organic while milk yogurt plain, no salt, less surgar, dark chocolate..
You will learn as you go what works for you. You will adjust too the pain..very scary always, some will think you have lost your mind but you have not, this autoimmune used nerves too lie to brain..ughh..support group online, God, Good mate, Good friend or relative.probably will have too stop working..
Love ya..

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@cathylc58

I have autonomic neuropathy from stage three kidney failure. It first started in my small intestine, then my large intestine. Next it went to my stomach and bladder. Now it's in my esophagus, causing several difficult problems. About 3-4 months ago I started getting a pain in one spot, going up the left side of my neck. About one month ago, that same pain continued up the side of my head to just over the top of it. That pain, is like an electric shock. It only lasts maybe five seconds, but the pain it leaves behind is very painful and probably lasts 6-7 minutes. It doesn't help me but when that happens, I bend my head a little and bring my hand up to it and hold that spot until the worst is over. I always have them during daytime, never during the night. Well, yesterday at church it changed again. The electric shock type pain came, but instead of going in a straight line just over the top of my head, at the base of my head it started, then exploded like the fireworks you watch in the sky. This happened for a steady forty five minutes, without stopping at all.
A while back I saw a spine specialist and after an x ray, said it's just arthritis. I said, do you think it could be neuropathy that came from my esophagus? He said, no. I said, how do you know? He said, because I do. During the past weeks, I've been having trouble with my thinking while writing on my kindle. I've started to spell words wrong that I've know for fifty years, sound out the words to help me spell them but still make mistakes, and never put in the silent letter, I think because I don't hear it when sounding it out. I spell sentences wrong and put the words where they don't belong. And some sentences don't even make sense because I've left out words. When I'm talking, I do almost those same things. I don't understand things or what some are anymore. And, I have what I call, brain fog. When I do have it, I will wake up with it and it will last maybe 5 hours. Is this how neuropathy in the brain feels like and does to you?

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Hi @cathylc58, There is another discussion that sounds very similar to your discussion where your post may receive more visibility. I'm tagging our moderator @lisalucier to see if we should move your discussion to the one below so that you can meet others with similar symptoms.

> Groups > Chronic Pain > "Electric Shock" type pain in my scalp!
https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/electric-shock-type-pain-in-my-scalp/

@juliediane222, @jenniferhunter and @rwinney who may also have some thoughts on your symptoms.

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I have autonomic neuropathy from stage three kidney failure. It first started in my small intestine, then my large intestine. Next it went to my stomach and bladder. Now it's in my esophagus, causing several difficult problems. About 3-4 months ago I started getting a pain in one spot, going up the left side of my neck. About one month ago, that same pain continued up the side of my head to just over the top of it. That pain, is like an electric shock. It only lasts maybe five seconds, but the pain it leaves behind is very painful and probably lasts 6-7 minutes. It doesn't help me but when that happens, I bend my head a little and bring my hand up to it and hold that spot until the worst is over. I always have them during daytime, never during the night. Well, yesterday at church it changed again. The electric shock type pain came, but instead of going in a straight line just over the top of my head, at the base of my head it started, then exploded like the fireworks you watch in the sky. This happened for a steady forty five minutes, without stopping at all.
A while back I saw a spine specialist and after an x ray, said it's just arthritis. I said, do you think it could be neuropathy that came from my esophagus? He said, no. I said, how do you know? He said, because I do. During the past weeks, I've been having trouble with my thinking while writing on my kindle. I've started to spell words wrong that I've know for fifty years, sound out the words to help me spell them but still make mistakes, and never put in the silent letter, I think because I don't hear it when sounding it out. I spell sentences wrong and put the words where they don't belong. And some sentences don't even make sense because I've left out words. When I'm talking, I do almost those same things. I don't understand things or what some are anymore. And, I have what I call, brain fog. When I do have it, I will wake up with it and it will last maybe 5 hours. Is this how neuropathy in the brain feels like and does to you?

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@cathylc58

I have autonomic neuropathy from stage three kidney failure. It first started in my small intestine, then my large intestine. Next it went to my stomach and bladder. Now it's in my esophagus, causing several difficult problems. About 3-4 months ago I started getting a pain in one spot, going up the left side of my neck. About one month ago, that same pain continued up the side of my head to just over the top of it. That pain, is like an electric shock. It only lasts maybe five seconds, but the pain it leaves behind is very painful and probably lasts 6-7 minutes. It doesn't help me but when that happens, I bend my head a little and bring my hand up to it and hold that spot until the worst is over. I always have them during daytime, never during the night. Well, yesterday at church it changed again. The electric shock type pain came, but instead of going in a straight line just over the top of my head, at the base of my head it started, then exploded like the fireworks you watch in the sky. This happened for a steady forty five minutes, without stopping at all.
A while back I saw a spine specialist and after an x ray, said it's just arthritis. I said, do you think it could be neuropathy that came from my esophagus? He said, no. I said, how do you know? He said, because I do. During the past weeks, I've been having trouble with my thinking while writing on my kindle. I've started to spell words wrong that I've know for fifty years, sound out the words to help me spell them but still make mistakes, and never put in the silent letter, I think because I don't hear it when sounding it out. I spell sentences wrong and put the words where they don't belong. And some sentences don't even make sense because I've left out words. When I'm talking, I do almost those same things. I don't understand things or what some are anymore. And, I have what I call, brain fog. When I do have it, I will wake up with it and it will last maybe 5 hours. Is this how neuropathy in the brain feels like and does to you?

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@cathylc58 I am copying part of my response from a private message to Cathy. I didn't know there was stage 3 kidney disease, and that is something to consider when you are considering any medical procedures and that is why coming to a multidisciplinary medical center for diagnosis is so important. I had recommended further imaging beyond X-rays such as an MRI would be a benefit to getting a proper diagnosis. A neurologist can probably help with assessing the cognitive issues you've mentioned with thinking about words.

Hi Cathy. "arthritis in your head" doesn't explain your diagnosis, and if the only imaging you had was an X-ray and not an MRI, they don't know if nerves are getting compressed. From your symptoms it does sound like there could be a spine problem. Compression of the spinal cord in your neck can send pain anywhere in your body, and the headache you describe on the back and top of your head sounds like a cervicogenic headache that comes from a spine problem. You may want to be seen at a good interdisciplinary spine center. Another possibility that your symptoms may indicate is an alignment problem of the spine that may affect the blood supply to the brain. If your C1 and C2 vertebrae right under your skull are misaligned, it can affect blood flow or cause vertigo because the arteries run right alongside the spine. That is why it is so important to get to a good teaching medical center for another opinion. You did not get a proper assessment with what you told me. I am your age, and I had spinal cord compression and some vertigo, and it sent pain everywhere in my body. My spine surgery resolved all of that.

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