What IS this new set of symptoms about???

Nurses General Nursing


question to all you nurses out there. the other morning on the way home from work, i was seized, and i do mean seized, by a severe searing, stabbing unrelentless pain that started somewhere around my left hip and shot down the middle of my thigh. it was so severe, that i, who have undergone a 24 hour labor on pitocin and delivered a 9 plus pound child without benefit either of epidural or analgesia, immediately put on my blinker to pull over, passed out briefly, was disoriented ,diaphoretic and nauseated. i would have preferred th elabor pain.once i recovered i wondered if it was an isolated event, gas or some sort of weird sciatica....happened again yesterday and last night, always when i am seated and last night i fell over to my side in mid chew of whatever i had for dinner. brief disorientation and then recovery....had this sensation been in my chest, i might have thought i was having an mi. now i am scared because i have no warning signs and just the thought that it might happen when i am driving my kids around makes me weak with worry. i know sciatica is a possibility, but in the past few months the only thing physically that has changed is that my normally regular periods are spacing out. i apparently also have a bulky uterus. does anyone know of an occasion where the bulky uterus might be pressing on something to give such a sensation? i feel like a fool but i don't want it chalked up to an overweight getting older nurse. i am not one to complain and pain doesn't usually get to me. this is really very frightening to me and i was wondering if anyone has any ideas as to what is going on and /or why? thanks in advance to any of you who might offer some advice, experience or ideas.....


564 Posts

How about a kidney stone, or "gravel" (small bits of renal stones).

I have heard folks with them describe the flank pain you describe, and there is usually the nausea, etc. Pain thresholds determine if people feel faint, or feel better pacing, doubled up. You do not have to have sx of UTI, but urine dip is almost always + for blood, whether you can see it, or not.

Don't let this go on. You need to get checked, ASAP.

Also, if you have ever had abdominal surgery, or used a IUD, it is very possible thta you may have adhesions that are causing the problem.


4,516 Posts

My husband experienced similar symptoms and he has spinal stenosis and multiple degenerative and herniated lumbo sacral disks. A repeat MRI showed no major changes, and it resolved eventually with steroids, muscle relaxants, and analgesics...he's off them all now. :)

Have you had an MRI or do you have a history of spinal problems? As a nurse, we know how common back problems are in our profession. Let us know how it turns out and hope you get to the bottom of it soon.

I did have a friend who said all her back pain went away after her hyst for large uterine fibroids. It may be worth checking out...ask your gyn....good luck!

mother/babyRN, RN

11 Articles; 1,587 Posts

Specializes in cardiac, diabetes, OB/GYN.

Geesh, I hadn't thought of a renal etiology and I do have fibroids and pmh of 3 csections in the past 4 years...I appreciate all your info. I was beginning to think I was losing my mind....

mother/babyrn -

well, don't rule out a uterine cause for this pain, although i'm not sure why it would be episodic. uterine tumors (and you did say you had fibroids) often cause sciatic pain. doesn't even have to be a tumor per se.

obviously, with the possibility of passing out, driving is out of the question! , even without your precious babies in the car. you could be involved in an accident with a car containing somebody else' precious babies, not to mention your *own* safety!

i'm curious about a couple of points: 1) do you have any post-icteral type of symptoms, as in do you lose continence during/after the brief unconsciousness, are you sleepy aftewards? and 2) is the pain gone when you regain consciousness? if it's not gone, is it reduced by a huge amount?

to tell you the truth, i would be most comfortable if you presented to emergency immediately and had a workup. these episodes of losing consciousness need to be checked out immediately if not sooner.




4,516 Posts

Sorry, I must have missed the part about LOC...this is a great concern. My DH became diaphoretic, nauseated and delirious...with the sacral/hip/leg pain, but did NOT lose consciousness. I agree with Dennie... please don't wait too long to get this checked! (((HUGS)))

mother/babyRN, RN

11 Articles; 1,587 Posts

Specializes in cardiac, diabetes, OB/GYN.

I would have to say there really hasn't been a post ictal sort of thing and I think the one thing I have noticed is a slight disorientation for a moment or two...Only once have I actually blacked out and it had to be only for a few moments..It is really scary and has happened 3 times so far..Don't worry, I have mentioned this to my OB, who works with me, by the way, and haven't gotten too far. It is really scary and man, does it ever hurt! Last couple of episodes have been very brief but holy Cow! I will keep you all updated and thank you for the support and hugs..These things are not supposed to happen to nurses!

Yeah..... I wouldn't rule OUT something uterine, but I wouldn't count on it, either! I KNOW how frustrating these things can be -- I'm getting the run-around from three different docs concerning back/flank pain and hematuria.

I don't think it's a good idea to just rely on the OB, especially if you saw him in passing at work and he doesn't seem to be jumping on it. I still think you should go to the emerg. I guess I'd misunderstood, in that I'd thought you'd had LOC with all three of your episodes. But I think that ONE unexplained episode like that is too much. IMHO you should have somebody checking it out right now.




455 Posts

I've had a few patients with similar symptoms, which turned out to be ovarian cysts.


mother/babyRN, RN

11 Articles; 1,587 Posts

Specializes in cardiac, diabetes, OB/GYN.

What EVER it is it is scary and hurts like nothing I have ever experienced before. I am calling a neurologist today, keeping my next week appointment with the OB, firing him if I don't get a decent interest. My husband tells me that it takes a minute or two for me to come around and be "lucid", which I wasn't aware of. After typing my last reply here, I had a major episode, while lying on the couch. It was so severe that I finally understand why people in severe pain beg to be shot. It starts at my left mid hip and shoots down about 5 inches. Feels like some sort of short circuit to my brain. I would drive to the ER but I am afraid to, and bundling 3 toddlers into the car seems unrealistic. It is the next step, however. I can't count on when it might happen. There is no rhyme or reason to it. Maybe there is a little post ictal sense to this thing, but so far, there is certainly no aura...Will keep you posted. I do ache down my entire leg afterwards, and that is new...Thanks for all the support...


1 Article; 5,758 Posts

We are all very worried, please get help ASAP. Let us know how things are going.


829 Posts

OMG!!! Please get checked out!! Yes, we are all very worried!!! Check back and let us know!!!

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