What causes burning nerve pain?

Neuralgia, which is pain caused by injury to or compression of a nerve, is often described as burning nerve pain. The discomfort can have a warm, electric, or tingling sensation and may feel as if it travels from one part of the body to another, which is a result of pain signals following the path of a distressed nerve. In the spine, neural compression can be caused by a variety of factors, though the most common cause is degeneration that accompanies the natural aging process.

Nerve pain and the regions of the spine

Degenerative spine conditions that have been known to cause neural compression and subsequent burning nerve pain include herniated discs, bulging discs, bone spurs, spinal stenosis and spondylolisthesis, among others. These conditions will affect each level of the spine differently:

  • Cervical spine — nerve pain may begin in the neck and travel through the shoulders, arms, hands and fingers.
  • Thoracic spine — less common than cervical or lumbar neuropathy, neural compression in the middle back can cause pain around the rib cage, chest, kidneys and abdomen.
  • Lumbar spine — the most common site for spinal neuralgia to occur; tingling or electric nerve pain in the lower back usually travels through the buttocks, hips, legs and feet. Nerve pain in the lumbar spine is also referred to as sciatica.

How can I treat burning nerve pain?

If you are suffering from burning nerve pain, work with your physician to develop a conservative treatment plan. This may include hot and cold compresses, pain medication, selective nerve block injections or behavior modification. If weeks or months of these treatments prove ineffective, Laser Spine Institute may be able to help. We specialize in a variety of minimally invasive, outpatient procedures aimed at easing spinal nerve compression. Effective minimally invasive techniques offer fewer risks and a much shorter recuperation§ than highly invasive, open spine surgeries. Contact Laser Spine Institute today for a review of your MRI or CT scan.