first neurologist appt...questions

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colee1979
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 667
   Posted 8/11/2006 1:01 PM (GMT -6)   
I have my first visit on Tuesday with the neurologist...I have written down all of my symptoms that I can think of since getting my MRI results...I didnt realize I had THAT many symptoms..some of which I dont even know if they are related to my problems or not..but I opted to tell the doctor anyhow...just in case. I was just wondering,what is the next step? When your not actually dx yet...but your thought to maybe/might have MS? I have had bloodwork and the MRI...but nothing else. From what I have read,a spinal tap would be next...I am wondering,is this something that may be down on Tuesday...or is this something that has to be scheduled a head of time? I am just so anxious to get this appt over with...I just want to know for sure what is going on with me...What can I expect from the spinal tap? Will I know any results right away...or is everything sent to a lab and takes days to hear anything? Do you think it looks odd to take in a whole list of everything that is wrong...and everything that has been wrong in the past? Some things,I am not even sure if it is related...so should I still list it and let the doctor decided or should I only keep the things listed that I believe are a direct realtion to the numbness I have been feeling?
 
~Nichole~
 
 
 


shellypoo
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 896
   Posted 8/11/2006 1:35 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Nichole!
Yes, take the whole list and let the doc decide what is relavent, they'll probably ask alot of questions, too. I doubt they will do a spinal tap on the same day, and it does take a few days for results. You might request to have it done under floroscopy (SP?) having a radiologist doing it and have them keep you overnight, that way you will be less likely to have a severe headache afterwards.

Hang in there, sometimes these dx's take a while! Keep us posted! :)


Michelle ><>
 
"Life shouldn't be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving
safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather, to skid in
broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly
shouting...."Wow! What a ride! Thank You Lord!!!"
 
 
 
 


uppitycats
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 2135
   Posted 8/11/2006 2:30 PM (GMT -6)   
It doesn't hurt to take the whole list with you to the doctor, but it would be most helpful for you if you take the time to sort through the list, and work on identifying what are the most troublesome symptoms, and describe how they affect your ability to function.
 
Doctors talk about symptoms in terms of "Activities of Daily Living", or ADL. ADL include things like toileting yourself, feeding yourself, dressing yourself, walking (or other mobility issues), bathing. Group your symptoms by category -- these are problems I have walking; these are problems I have when I try to do this activity; these are problems I have eating;, or whatever.
 
And don't get SO specific: I've seen people try to prepare a list that reads sort of like this:
 
"Last Tuesday at 2:49 I had a twinge in my left calf and it was very painful and it lasted for 17 minutes.  It appeared again the next day at 7:29..." instead of something like:  "I'm apparently having spasticity in my legs; I've noticed it primarily in my left calf. It's very painful, and lasts for several minutes, but then will fade away, only to return the next day.  I think I probably am having spasticity in my feet, too -- I get foot cramps pretty regularly.
 
And start with your MOST troublesome symptom(s) first, then your next-most-troublesome, and so on.  That way, if the doctor cuts you off,  at least you will have talked about the most problemmatic thing right away. (Note that many doctor visits these days are not much more than 20 minutes or so; it is rare to go as long as an hour..)
 
What will most likely happen on Tuesday is that the neuro will review your MRI with you, and help you interpret what was seen there, and what he thinks it means.  In addtion, he'll test you in the office for what doctors call "clinical signs" -- signs that there is something awry with your nervous system. He'll test your balance, your strength (in both arms and legs), your ability to walk. He'll look in your eyes to see if there are things like nystagmus (which isn't always apparent even to you).  If he hasn't already, he'll ask for a medical history, not only of your past ailments, but of immediate family members (blood members -- parents, siblings, grandparents, cousins).
 
Depending on what he finds on the MRI, he may or may not schedule you for a spinal tap (it generally won't be done that day), or he may want another MRI.  He may schedule you for evoked potential tests -- tests that look at how signals move from your brain to your eyes (these are non-invasive; one of them requires only that electrodes be attached to your head, and you sit and watch a computer monitor).  None of these tests will give you immediate results: you'll have to wait for the results to be determined and passed along to your doctor, who may call you, or ask you to come in for another visit, to interpret the results for you.
 
Diagnosing these kinds of disorders can take a long time. Don't expect an immediate answer (although without knowing exactly what is on your MRI, it may be that what appears there, in combination with clinical signs, is enough to diagnose you.) 
 
Good luck with your visit. Come back and tell us how it went!
...I am not a doctor, nor health professional, and don't pretend to be one, here.....


colee1979
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 667
   Posted 8/13/2006 3:47 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you both very much!!! I will get online again after my appt and let you all know how it went.....I feel much more at ease kinda knowing how this will go...
 
~Nichole~
 
 
 

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