What is neuralgia? Your nervous system consists of two anatomic parts. The central nervous system, made up of the brain and spinal cord, acts as the central processing station for nerve signals. The peripheral nervous system transmits sensory information between the muscles, tissues and nerves in the rest of the body to the brain. Neuralgia, or nerve pain, is pain that is felt anywhere along the path of a nerve. When neuralgia originates in the peripheral nervous system it can produce burning, numbness, pins-and-needles sensations, muscle weakness or paralysis, and sensitivity. These symptoms may be caused by a local injury, in which the pain can be directly related to a trauma, or a systemic illness that affects your entire body. With referred pain, a more complex condition, the sensation of pain is felt in a different part of your body from where the injury or illness actually occurred. Referred pain is the most difficult to diagnose and treat. The most common form of neuralgia is trigeminal neuralgia, a form of neuralgia that affects one of the cranial nerves belonging to the central nervous system. This condition produces extreme facial pain that can feel like burning or an electric shock. The pain is severe enough that daily activities such as chewing, eating, or tooth brushing can be agonizing. Neuralgia can affect any body part, leading to impaired function due to pain or muscle weakness. It is most common in people over the age of 60 (Source: PubMed). Neuralgia due to a malfunctioning of the autonomic nervous system (part of the peripheral nervous system) may accompany a disruption of actions such as breathing, swallowing, bladder control, or perspiration. Low blood pressure, dizziness or vertigo, or loss of consciousness may also occur.Seek immediate medical care (call 911) if you, or someone you are with, have any of these symptoms as they can be life threatening.