I’ve had a few painful incidents in my life, but I consider myself pretty lucky (knock on wood) as far as escaping serious injury in my life.

Let’s hope it stays that way!

What’s the worst pain you’ve ever experienced?

AskReddit users shared their thoughts.

1. Terrible.

“Shingles on my face.

Even a hair touching my face would feel like I was being electrocuted.”

2. Ouch!

“Having burned skin (deep 2nd degree and some 3rd degree) debrided from my back

There is no sub-lethal dose of pain k**lers that is sufficient to make that tolerable.

It sucked so very VERY much.”

3. Broken bones.

“I broke my arm when I was younger. Full on in half. Bent funny. Broken.

But it was a clean break! No fragments. The doctor obviously needed to set it. It wasn’t so bad that it was a “do it right now to keep your arm” bad though. So I was given the choice to either wait 24 hours from that moment, no eating, and be put under anesthesia. Or do it now no pain meds.

I figured “F**k it. I just broke my arm, how much worse could it be?”

Doctor came in with 3 nurses, plaster, and a towel. My Dad held his hand out for me to squeeze. I remember him saying “Okay. You are much braver than I am.” They gave me the towel to bite down on.

And then 2 nurses bent my arm back, one nurse held my legs down, and the doctor began wrapping my arm in plaster. Worst 10 minutes of my life. I could FEEL my arm stressing against the inside of the cast for DAYS.”

4. Debilitating.


The “size 10” ones I wanted to blow out the middle part of my head with a gun to make it stop. Today I have a “Size 8” one and I just want to go to the ER and have them put me into a coma.

A while back I broke my wrist. I didn’t know it was broken so I waited till the next day to go in. Bought a brace at CVS. I didn’t take any paink**lers. It “kinda hurt” overnight. Compared to migraines, I realized.”

5. Painful.

“Worst pain was after having my gallbladder removed.

During the surgery the doctor nicked my small intestine and failed to notice. I remember telling the nurse something wasn’t right and I couldn’t urinate. Straight cathed me and sent me home. I was on my couch telling my wife that the pain was worse that I had ever experienced.

Went back to the hospital via ambulance and spent the next 24hrs being ignored thinking I was looking for pain meds. Septic shock, 9 surgeries, and near total organ shut down I survived with an ileostomy. ICU, hospital and rehab totalled just shy of 3 months.”

6. Bursting.

“Feeling my appendix start to burst.

Heard a voice screaming in pain and realized it was mine.”

7. OMG.

“Tearing my Achilles tendon off the bone while hang gliding using my coat at the top of a hill, and then walking [down] the mountain for 3 hours on it.”

8. Jeez…

“You ever hear about that guy that jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge and he left a s**cide note that said, “Nothings wrong, just have a tooth ache”?

Teeth infections are the worst. Definitely contemplated s**cide just to make the pain stop.”

9. Excruciating.

“A deep inner ear infection. The pain was excruciating.

I’ve experienced worse “peak pain”, but this….. the pain was constantly there, it felt like it was inside my brain. I couldn’t think straight.

It took almost two days for the medication to ease the pain.”

10. Nerve endings.

“Bent my tail bone 90 degrees inwards (sports injury). If it had broken, would have been relatively quick and easy to heal, instead it took the better part of 7 years.

Turns out a lot of nerve endings live down there and for a long time I needed paink**lers (strong ones) just to go to the bathroom without passing out (there were other, even more awful side effects I won’t go into).

Would not recommend.”

11. Oh, no!

“A long term constipation that finally decided it was time to go.

You know those stomach cramps you get when you have bowel/stomach problems? Ok, so, kick the pain up by about 4x and make it last an entire day. For most of the day nothing came out and I barely felt anything move. I tried laying down, chugging water, exercising etc. Basically everything your suppose to do short of laxatives to help initiate a bowel movement.

Just this constant pain that would randomly get really sharp like I was getting stabbed for a minute at a time and make me feel like I needed to throw up. Got to a point I passed out from exhaustion at one point. Finally, near the end of the day the main blockage finally passed and everything just flowed out. Cannot properly articulate how much relief I felt once it was over.

Best way I can describe the whole thing is trying to pass a brick followed by gravel. Just an overall terrible experience.”

12. This is bad.

“I collided head to head going for a ball in the air in a soccer tournament in college.

Fractured skull, solid concussion, but the worst was hours later when an epidural hematoma began to develop between my skull and the lining around my brain.

It felt like someone slowly dragging a knife along my forehead. Worst pain I’ve ever felt by a long shot. Doctor said that was the blood having nowhere to go and the pressure tearing the lining away from the skull to create space.

For anyone wondering I was rushed to surgery, they called a brain surgeon from home cause at this point it was like 9pm, sawed off a flap of my skull, “evacuated” the blood, and now I’ve got some titanium additions to my skull. Pretty metal. Pun intended.”

13. UTI.

“So basically when you let a UTI go untreated for too long, you get this awful pain in your kidney? I think kidney? Idk lol. Somewhere in your lower back.

So I had been getting UTI after UTI again and again for almost 2 years. So my brain kinda started to tune out the pain.. you can see where this is going lol.

It was New Years, about 1AM, and I was laying down going to sleep, and my lower back kind of hurt. The next time I woke up I was sobbing my eyes out in so much pain. I ended up throwing up just because the pain was so bad.”

14. Ummm…

“I was stung directly on the end of my p**is by a rafting colony of fire ants in a hurricane that had crawled up my shorts for shelter.”

15. Take the pills!

“The day after my back surgery (l4-l5 discectomy), I tried to be tough and not take the pain pills, because pain pills make me nervous. My partner tried to help me up and grabbed my hand and pulled, but I wasn’t ready, so my spine twisted.

I. Saw. Jesus. Jesus is apparently mostly white and purple flecks of light. And then went into shock. Like full on cold sweat, 120bpm, can’t catch my breathe, nauseous, shaking, light headed shock.

Called the doctors post surgery hotline (my gf dialed for me, I was still kind of out of it), surprisingly my surgeon answered. On a Saturday. “Hey so… I have enough first aid certs to know what shock is and, I think I was in shock, did I f**k something up?”

“Did you take the Percocet?” “No…” “I just cut your spine open. I gave you the prescription for a reason. Take the pills! … are you feeling groggy or intoxicated?” “No.” “That’s because your body is in so much pain from the trauma that your adrenaline is basically counteracting the effect of the pills. Which is why you need to take them. Take the d**n pills.” (paraphrased).

Needless to say his logic checked out for me.”

16. Sounds terrible.

“Dental pain. Exposed nerve in a broken tooth – totally utterly debilitating pain.

You can’t move, can barely breathe just in case the air movement or temperature touches that nerve. The pain goes up into your ear, down your jaw into your shoulder and chest. There is no relief, no knowing how long until it fades. There will be a wave where it intensifies, and you have no way of knowing whether this new level is going to lessen, or if it’s now your new “normal”.

Unless you have been through it, you won’t understand how bad it can truly be. And if you HAVE been through it, then you know. Nothing compares.”

17. Protect your eyes.

“Corneal abrasion.

Basically I cut my eye really bad and it was the worst pain imaginable. Tried to let it fix itself before I realized that wasn’t going to happen and I went to the emergency room.

Sometimes when I wake up in the mornings and my eyes are dry, when I first open my eyes I feel the pain again as my eyelid is peeling off of my cornea. Doctor said I’ll probably feel that for a while.”

18. Bad accident.

“Broke my spine during a boat accident a few years ago.

I made a full recovery, but the night after the surgery remains the most painful experience of my life. They put six chapstick-sized screws in my back to fix me. When I woke up after the surgery I thought for a while “this isn’t so bad”….until the anesthesia started to fade.

Turns out there’s a limit to how many paink**lers they can give you without k**ling you right after you’ve been under full anesthesia.

I endured a night of complete and utter misery, to the point that I caught myself seriously considering my options to commit suicide given the tools I could reach from my hospital bed. I somehow made it through the night and the next morning they knocked me out with a proper dose of opiates.

I wouldn’t wish that experience on my worst enemy, even though I turned out fine in the end.”

19. WTF?

“I ate 7 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches in one sitting. I was a poor college student at the time and sometimes “starved” during the week.

That weekend I was home at my parents and up late by myself. I don’t know what possessed me but I started making PB & J sandwiches and didn’t stop. I ate 7 sandwiches and went to sleep. Two hours later, I woke up with the worst pain in my stomach that I’ve ever had. I woke my mom up and made her pound on my back to help relieve the pain.

She did it for over an hour until I was able to go to the bathroom. I will never eat that many PB & J sandwiches again. Must have glued my intestines together or something.”

20. Car wreck.

“June this year I fainted while driving (no drugs or alcohol) and woke up at the telephone pole.

Because I was still driving when I fainted, my foot was on the accelerator when I woke up. The first thing I felt was possibly the worst pain I had ever felt in my life, I knew at that moment that I broke my ankle.

When I got to emergency room, they told me that my ankle was shattered at the talus bone and I needed reconstruction surgery.

This happened in June this year and tomorrow is October. I still can’t walk but physio is going well.

But yeah, no adrenalin effect, I woke up screaming and even screaming couldn’t relieve the pain. I was stuck in my car with my body weight on my ankle.”

21. Ugh.

“Broke my collar bone and dislocated the same shoulder where the collar bone was.

At the time we just thought it was a dislocated shoulder so laying on the ground and with a nurse friend on the phone my father and a few other friends that were there at the time help get my shoulder back in place. Trying to get it back and finally getting it back in place was the worse pain I’ve ever felt in my life.

Mind you tho I’ve broken my femur, the other collar bone, my wrist, several ribs (which breathing and just living is a pain when you do that), I’ve blacked out from hitting my head on the concrete at 45mph with a helmet on, have had severe road rash, seen my kneecap due to more road rash, and finally been st**bed with an exacto knife.”

22. Yowza!

“Delivering an 8 pound, 10 ounce, 14-inch head baby without pain meds.

Was like huge watermelon traveling through my body hitting every nerve ending.”

23. Beware of shingles.

“I had shingles when I was 10.

I remember I was thrashing in pain in my bed, it hurt to wear pants over the affected area, I couldn’t sleep with sheets on because it hurt to touch, and it felt like my nerves were exposed from my body.

It was fu**ing hell, the pain of shingles beats all the bones that I’ve broken”

24. Holy s**t.

“Multiple dressing changes on open surgery wound before skin grafts were put on.

Basically my entire groin area.”

25. Ahhhhhhh!

“While barefoot, I once got a door shut on my foot.

There was some force behind it too. My toe itself went under the door in the gap, but the nail didn’t – that went up.

I just had to wrap it up and sleep on it, and go to hospital in the morning. It wasn’t fun.”

26. Satan did this.

“Occasionally have menstrual cramps sent by Satan.

They totally incapacitate me and alternate between feeling like someone has stuck a screwdriver into me and is twisting and feeling like my uterus has grown teeth and is chewing it’s way free VERY SLOWLY.

Sometimes nausea or fevers for added fun…”

What’s the worst pain you’ve ever experienced?

Share your stories with us in the comments.

We look forward to it!