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Dysesthesia

    Dysesthesia (dysaesthesia in British English) is a tactile hallucination. Dysesthesia has indeed been considered to be a hallucination. The reason is that it signals that terrible damage is being done to tissue when none is occurring. However, recent advances in neuroinflammation indicate that the patient is not actually hallucinating. Most commonly described as "like acid under my skin", burning dysesthesia is now felt to accurately reflect an acidotic state in the synapses and perineural space. Some ion channels will open to a low pH. Indeed the acid sensing ion channel I has been shown to open at BODY TEMPERATURE, in a model of nerve injury pain. This information makes us uneasy about using the term "hallucination", although a better word does not immediately present itself. Dysesthetic burning may be hallucinatory as to the cutaneous surface, but completely accurate as to what is occurring in the synapses.
    Symptoms include
    • Impairment of sensation short of anesthesia.
    • A condition in which a disagreeable sensation is produced by ordinary stimuli; caused by lesions of the sensory pathways, peripheral or central.
    • Abnormal sensations experienced in the absence of stimulation, such as:
      • Burning
      • Wetness
      • Itching
      • Electric shock
      • Pins and needles

    It is commonly seen in diabetic patients, and can be relieved by using creams containing Capsaiacin.

    See also

    • Paresthesia