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  • moneyp
    I was diagnosed April 8 2016, that's about a week ago.  In addition to ending up in the ER in January and then being diagnosed, I have what I can only describe as head pressure, almost crushing like.  And I have itching on my back, arms, legs but that comes and goes.  But I'm hoping someone out there can tell me if they have head pressure and what the heck are you supposed to do about it?  It's not a headache, its not painful, but I wake up dizzy or nauseous and my head simply feels like it's going to crush itself some days.  Would love any thoughts.  I'm not on medication yet and am deciding which one to take.  So any help there too would be great.
  • maria1
    Most of us have something else going on, have you thought about allergies? A quick check would be benadryl.
  • moneyp
    No two people are the same so I am looking for someone who has my symptoms because we all have the same diagnosis. Most of us are just scared.
  • cactussun
    I have a friend who has PPMS and she has been complaining of head pressure and tightness for years. And several doctors think she is making it up or think she is depressed. But she went and had a biofeedback scan and on that scan it shows that her head is very tight which finally gave her the proof she has been looking for to show others. However she has known about it for years. Unfortunately, she has not found anything to help relieve this pressure. Biofeedback has done some relief but the pressure is always there. As far as for itching, I can say that I have itching as well. It seems it took me about three years after being diagnosed that the itching has become a daily and all day sometimes at night affair. Mostly my ears and parts of my face neck and sometimes upper arms are the most affected by itching. At night I notice it can get worse. I read up that it is another symptom. As if there are not plenty already
  • cactussun
    I do wonder if maybe vibration therapy or trigger point massage therapy for your head might help relieve it. It would make sense that it is spasticity in the muscles. I also wonder if acupuncture could help. I would be a supporter trying that as it helps with so much in alleviating MS symptoms.
  • tallgal
    Hi moneyp, :) I think I know what you are experiencing... I'm sorry that you a going through this! Before I was dx'ed I had a year long, on going "headache", that felt like my skull was going to split open or crush in and my eyeballs felt like they were going to pop out of my head or like someone was sticking a spoon in my eye socket and trying to pry one or both out! YUCK! I encourage you to make sure that it is not someother underlying problem like blood pressure or sinusitis... it could be caused by a good many number of things! If no cause can be found, this is what works best for me. I don't know if this will work for you, but for me it's always a matter of getting the inflammation under control. I use a very low sugar diet, fish oil and tumeric, plus I use massage and exercise to release the tension in the muscles to get rid of my headache. (It takes both an anti-inflammatory diet, nutrients and muscle/bodywork to have good relief, for me.) It takes time for it to go away. For me this was not a quick fix type of problem. It's something I have to keep the damper on consistently or it comes back again. I have been working on it again for months and just recently have gotten it manageable. (I was involved in a car accident and they can pave the slippery slope for all kinds of things to act up...) For immediate help I found a product called Anti-flam, or flame... can't quite remember, I'm all out at the moment. I got it at a natural foods store. (For me, Ibuprofen doesn't touch it at all.) I hope that you find some relief soon!
  • ms_navigator_sam
    Hi moneyp,
    Thanks for reaching out! The pressure you're explaining doesn't sound like a common symptom of MS, but I would definitely encourage you to discuss this with your doctor. The itching can be a pretty common symptom. I've included some information below to read about the itching with MS and the different medications to help you compare your options.

    Itching
    Medications

    Additionally, this is a section of our website designed specifically for people who are newly diagnosed that may be helpful:
    Newly Diagnosed

    The National MS Society has MS Navigators available to answer your questions and provide information about support, programs and resources. Please do not hesitate to call us at 800-344-4867, option 1. I look forward to hearing from you!
    -Sam
  • Kasey
    I cannot comment on the pressure as I have not experienced it myself however I do know that MS Neurologists are not experts in MS they don't have it and tend to think it's not MS.  I have leaned in my experience if a particular neurologist has no other patients with a particular symptom it does not exist in their opinion. 

    Now for for the itching contrary to most MS Neurologists it IS a symptom of MS and it does exist. I am not talking about a minor scratch here and there I am talking about wanting to rip your skin off. 

    I woukd seek another professional opinion about the pressure. Find another MS Neurologist.

    i recently had my follow up with my MS Neurologist who claims I am the only patient with itching and no othe Neurologist in the country has patients with it as they all trained under him so he knows everything. 

    I find the best results is through your own research and speaking to others with MS. Is there an MS Support group near you? 

    Wishigg you you all the best 

    Kasey 
  • joeagomez
    Moneyp, I had been complaining about head pressure for years to my regular dr before I had my initial attack. It eventually went away months after my diagnosis. I myself believe it had to do with the initial inflammation of my attack. I would make sure your on steroids, dosnt sound like you have been put on any to get the inflammation under control. Just a bit of advice, make sure you get an MS SPECIALIST not just a general nero. The free drug co dinners are a great way to meet the specialists. Info, info,info get it. I go to the MANDLE MS CENTER in Hartford ct. My Dr Has had MS HIMSELF for 40 yrs. Do you have vertigo,dizzy and nausea sounds like it. I can't overstate it, make sure you are seeing an MS SPECIALIST.I wasted 1.5 yrs of my life with a general nero. Things WILL get better, Good luck. Reach out to me if you want to talk.
  • joeagomez
    Moneyp, I had been complaining about head pressure for years to my regular dr before I had my initial attack. It eventually went away months after my diagnosis. I myself believe it had to do with the initial inflammation of my attack. I would make sure your on steroids, dosnt sound like you have been put on any to get the inflammation under control. Just a bit of advice, make sure you get an MS SPECIALIST not just a general nero. The free drug co dinners are a great way to meet the specialists. Info, info,info get it. I go to the MANDLE MS CENTER in Hartford ct. My Dr Has had MS HIMSELF for 40 yrs. Do you have vertigo,dizzy and nausea sounds like it. I can't overstate it, make sure you are seeing an MS SPECIALIST.I wasted 1.5 yrs of my life with a general nero. Things WILL get better, Good luck. Reach out to me if you want to talk.
  • gseideman
    I get head pressure and icepick headache. I also itch but mostly my head (face neck) wake up with scratches. My face goes numb sometimes too.
  • sna2164
    Hi moneyp,

    I also have the relentless itching that comes and goes. Almost always on my arms, usually my left arm above elbow, sometimes forearem. I accidentally itch until I bleed sometimes. Ice helps me A LOT. I also experience a pressure of sorts in my head that I can usually blame on Vertigo. I have vertigo just about everyday, however when it is severe, it feels like the pressure you are describing to the point it is not safe for me to drive.  Additionally, when I had the attack that I believe caused my cognitive impairment, I also experienced a pressure type feeling in my head along with a lot of dizziness, confusion, and a feeling of being detached from the present (promise I was unmedicated haha, sounds ridiculous, but very difficult to explain). Lastly, MS does cause pain. One of the areas I experience pain is in the back of my head, my heels, and tailbone, almost always while I'm sleeping. The pain in the back of my head is stabbing and fire like. Hope some of this helps and you get some answers soon :)
    Take care,
    -Shannon 
  • Pauline
    Yeap, I had that itching like insanely for about 4-6 months, complete with lots of hives over most my body, and then briefly for a week later on. I was given a drug to "calm me down" which I thought was weird to do & loads of creams & an alergy medicine. It helped some but not enough and I  didn't want to stay on medicine for it forever, plus the medicine made me too woozie to drive and get my kids to & from school.  In hind site, this was triggered by "above the normal level" of stress in my life.  It began during the months preceeding my son's Bar Mitzvah, when I was planning the celebration party for my son who was iffy on whether or not he'd be "in the mood" to participate on the big day (lots of attitude from him), and for guests (my husband's family) that are hyper critical and don't get along with each other.  The day after all went well, the hives, etc. magically disappeared completely.  The second time was when my daughter waited until 11:00pm on the night her college application was due, to complete her essay portion.  I'd been getting stressed all that final week knowing the absolute deadline was soon approaching (oh and also had my heart doing a weird feeling many times a day).  The day after she got the applications all done, again my hives, etc. magically instantly went away.  So all I can say is try to deal with what ever may be causing an extra unusual stress in your life, and maybe the itching will take care of itself.  As far as the unbearable headaches go...the kind where maybe out of exhaustion you may get only minutes of sleep here and there throughout the night, and can't think about anything other than "how do I make this stop?" and nothing seems to do anything for it...I've heard that marijuana can help a lot.  The 3 times I had this, and each lasted 2-3 days nonstop, I didn't know about the marijuana idea.  (I've even had morphine before for other arm pain, and it was like water to me...it did nothing for the pain, it just made me too drowsy to complain as much about it.)  Anyhow, now I know what I can try in the future that may help, if I get despret enough again.  Oh and of course I was concerned as to if I was having a stroke.  Dr. Oz said that while you are having a horrible headache, bend down and see if the headache gets much worse.  That's a sign it may be a stroke and you need to get to the hospital.  I kind of wonder if these headaches are what is felt when we have new or worsening leasons happening in our brain.  Thanks for bringing up this topic; I'd like to hear what others did for these issues.
  • loveisjoy
    Haven't had the head pressure, but the itching has been ongoing for several years now (off and on; with variances in intensity).  Mine happens mostly in my legs and feet. Wearing shoes with snug laces or small straps across the foot, or wearing ribbed socks generally aggravates the sensation.  I usually slip my shoes off when I'm at a movie theater or during a longer car drive.  

    Not much seems to help in my case.  I've tried different aloe gels, allergy creams, and numbing lotions and it's better than nothing, but certainly not long-lasting, reliable relief (in my case).  Usually I try to avoid stimuli on/around my feet, and just rub them with aloe gel until the worst of it subsides.  The problem for me is nerve damage (neuropathy) so I don't get a rash or anything.  Just the itching sensation.

    I spoke with a lady at a recent MS dinner/forum, and she also complained of bouts of intense itching with her MS.  I honestly think it warrants further study.  Of course, you have to be sure that there's not something else causing the itching, but it should be treated as a valid potential MS concern by your doctor, in my opinion.
  • Jackie-J
    Hi moneyp!
    I too have recently been diagnosed. I don't have the head pressure but have had the itching sporadically. It's not that intense, but occurs in upper body (upper arms, head, ears, and back). I believe flare is due to added stress for me. I haven't addressed with my neurologist yet, but I appreciate all the responses so I can give collective input. Started Gilenya 2 months ago and also on Gabapentin for leg nerve pain.
    Good luck!!
  • joanief
    I haven't been diagnosed officially yet but have the same head pressure thing happening.  It's a feeling of full, pressure and sometimes pain in the right side and I can touch the exact spot.... I also get, what I call, the tingles on my head, not sure what that's about.  
  • joanief
    I haven't been diagnosed officially yet but have the same head pressure thing happening.  It's a feeling of full, pressure and sometimes pain in the right side and I can touch the exact spot.... I also get, what I call, the tingles on my head, not sure what that's about.  
  • april9517
    I get head pressure and itching. My neuro has MS as well and he experiences too. He put me on an anti-seizure med for the Headaches, I get really bad migraines as well, but it has also helped with the pressure feeling. that being said, I had also been diagnosed with sinusitis at the time the pressure was the worst. The itching i get awful, they are phantom itches, no matter how hard I scratch the ithc wont go away, there are reports of people scratching so hard they break skin. I also work in healthcare and have MS patients who experience itching as well. With all that being said I still reccomend going to your PCP as well, many complications that happen with MS patients are because they assume all symptoms are MS and other health issues go unadressed, for example, I ignored pain thinking it was a MS hug.....nope kidney stones. Good luck!