The 10 Most Painful Conditions. Doctors divulge the most excruciating illnesses. Ouch.

postherpetic neuralgia

5. Postherpetic Neuralgia

It’s the pain that lingers in about 10% of patients who come down with shingles, the mature version of chickenpox. (After you have chickenpox, the virus lies dormant in your brain and spinal cord and may re-activate as shingles as you age.) “When the shingles rash goes away, some patients are left with burning nerve pain that’s difficult to treat,” says Mackey.

trigeminal neuralgia

4. Trigeminal Neuralgia

Infections, tumors, and other conditions can trigger this pain in the trigeminal nerve, which carries sensation from your face to your brain. “Patients describe it as feeling their face is on fire,” says Kim. The pain tends to be throbbing, and in some cases, occurs every few minutes with the right side of the face most often being affected. One of the go-to treatments: anti-seizure medication.

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