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2 years of leg and arm pain and tingling


I have had pain and tingling in my legs and arms for 1.5 years now. It started out only in my left leg, but appeared in my left arm shortly thereafter, and in my right leg and arm too after a few months. On any given day, only one side is painful/tingling. The pain/tingling is predominantly in my leg (and only sometimes in my arm) and varies in intensity and focal point. On average it is at a 4 or 5 out of 10 but is almost constant. When it first started, it was a sharp pain in my left femur that progressively got worse and spread. This started a day or two after starting OCP which I stopped immediately after the pain started, and had a leg ultrasound to rule out a blood clot.

The pain feels uniquely nerve- or bone-related and not muscular. It is less tingling now and more pain. NSAIDs only take the edge off and do not offer much relief. It is a deep intense ache but neither the skin nor anything else is sensitive to the touch. To give you an idea, on any given day it feels like a an ache or throbbing pain in either my left or right leg (sometimes the whole leg, sometimes mainly the thigh or calf) the entire day which is sometimes accompanied by leg tingling, and/or similar pain/tingling in the ipsilateral arm. I go through phases of a week or two where the pain is either more or less severe.

I have been incorrectly diagnosed with sciatica, piriformis syndrome, and vitamin d deficiency (I supplemented and have had a normal/high vitamin d level for a year). I have had a MRI of my cervical spine and it was normal. I have not had an xray of my spine since my symptoms began, but the xray I had 1.5 years ago was normal. Blood tests (for vitamin deficiencies, arthritis, lupus, etc) are all normal. Recent leg EMG was normal. Motor reflexes are normal. I have an MRI of my brain upcoming, not sure why but I suspect to test for MS? Never had an MRI/CT of my cervical/lumbar spine or limbs.

When the pain first started, I experienced a lot of lightheadedness, dizziness, nausea, and headaches. I experience those much less frequently now but the pain remains. I haven't noticed any variation in the pain with sleep, stress level, physical activity, anything. One thing I have noticed is the leg pain is exacerbated by the period cramps I usually get in my lower back. It feels like the pain in my thigh and the pain in my lower back when I'm on my period are connected, as if through the sciatic nerve.

I am a 23-year-old female, normal weight, with an unremarkable medical history. No issues before this except for one migraine five years ago and a cyst in my navel a couple years after that. I am heterozygous for factor V leiden. The only other health issue I have had since this started is mild acid reflux, which I haven't felt the need to take a prescription PPI for yet. I do not have any anxiety or major depressive disorders or otherwise. My cognitive functioning has not been impaired. I am a vegetarian with a fairly healthy diet. I was mildly iron deficient a few months ago but may be back to normal now with supplements. Grandparents have suffered variously from heart attack, chronic kidney disease, pancreatic cancer, arthritis, diabetes, all in old age. Parents' histories are fairly unremarkable. Father has had anal fissures and hemorrhoids. Mom has hypothyroidism, carpal tunnel in her right arm. Pretty extensive history of mental illness in my family including depression, bipolar, and developmental/behavioural disorders. I have not had any of them however.

Please help me. I'm at my wit's end trying to figure out why I am experiencing this chronic pain out of the blue. It makes no sense to me and it's keeping me from doing normal activities. I've had these symptoms for so long that I've spent hours doing research and come up with a list of illnesses I may have (which I don't have the training to refute, so they may just be shots in the dark): mononeuritis multiplex, primary progressive MS, lyme disease, spinal stenosis, some sort of allergy.

Please help. I am willing to follow up on any suggestion.
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Avatar universal
I had exactly the same symptoms.Mine was finally DX as Lymes disease.The tests for it are very poor.You will most likely get a false negative.Mine all came back negative,They finally started treating me on clinical symptoms and sure enough that was it.I survived it, but it was tough.Good luck to you.......
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