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Pauline, Doctor (MD)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 8631
Experience:  Medical Doctor & Registered Pharmacist. Worked as Community pharmacist for 17 years.
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Left Temple Numbness/Tingling

Resolved Question:

Greetings. Since the first week of January, this year, I have been bothered with a tingling numbing sensation extending from above my left eye, down along my left temple, to the top of my left cheekbone. It is not painful, nor constant, but recurring throught the day and most noticeable during the evening hours. It does not thankfully prevent me from sleeping. An MRI showed no abnormal brain development or activity, but did diagnose sinusitis. An exam by an ENT physician disputed this diagnosis of sinusitis. An opthomalogical exam showed no diseases of the eyes. My primary physician is stumped and suggests a consultation with a neurologist.   Any ideas or suggestions as to what this condition could be? It is beginning to be very uncomfortable and frustrating to experience these sensations on a daily basis for almost 4 months. Thank you.
Submitted: 10 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Pauline replied 10 years ago.

There is a nerve which covers the area you are discussing, branches 1 and 2 of CN5 are opthalmic and maxillary divisions of the trigeminal nerve. It looks after the sensory supply to certain areas of the face. Testing of whether this is functional can include drawing a cotton bud lightly across different sections of the face and identifying sensation.

Problems with inappropriate nerve sensation can be controlled by some anti-epileptic medications such as carbamazepine or gabapentin.

A neurologist should be able to identify the cause and arrange appropriate therapy. In the meantime there is nothing additional you can do, apart from being careful with the skin in this area. eg hot water, chemicals etc could irritate without you being aware.

I appreciate this is very frustrating but a neurologist is definately the person to see.


Pauline and 7 other Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 10 years ago.
Reply to Pauline's Post: Thank you for the information. I normally take a hot shower in the morning and have always allowed hot water from my shower shower head (a pulsating hard spray) to hit me in the face. Could this be the cause of my problem? I have never experienced such a problem before. Do you recommend ceasing this practice? Is there an OTC medication which would alleviate this problem, thus obviating the need to consult with a very costly neurologist? (This latter question is important to me as I am presently uninsured.) Thanks again.
Expert:  Pauline replied 10 years ago.

Unfortuantly nerve problems can only be treated by a qualified practitioner, although your family doctor may agree to try you on the drugs I mentioned above for a while to see if there is any improvement.

In terms of the hot shower, I would reduce its impact on the skin but I do not think that this could be the cause unless it causes severe trauma and pain each time!