What Causes the "MS Hug?"It is caused by a lesion on the spinal cord and is technically classified as a neuropathic pain called a “paresthesia,” which refers to any abormal sensation. The sensation itself is the result of tiny muscles between each rib (intercostal muscles) going into spasm. These muscles have the job of holding our ribs together, as well as keeping them flexible and aiding in movement, like forced expiration.
What Does It Feel Like?Like many MS symptoms, the “MS hug” feels different for different people – it also feels different in the same people on different days or at different times of day. It can be:
- As low as the waist or as high as the chest; rarely it can be felt as high as the shoulders and neck
- Focused in one small area (usually on one side or in the back) or go all the way around the torso
- Worse when fatigued or stressed
- Present in “waves” lasting seconds, minutes or hours or can be steady for longer periods of time
- Described as sharp pain, dull pain, burning pain, tickling, tingling, a crushing or constricting sensation or intense pressure
So, anyhow, that is what is going on with me. :(