Hello and Happy Holidays! Hope you all enjoyed bringing in the new year with your loved ones.
I am really looking for some guidance that I haven't been able to find through any other available resources.
I have had recurring issues since...well, forever. I never put all of the symptoms together until I flared up worse than I ever have in June and haven't fully recovered, although I am much better than I was. Instead of boring you with the details, I'll just give a brief list of symptoms: extreme fatigue, vision/focus problems even with new glasses, cognitive/focus problems, time gaps, extreme weight loss, gastro malady, fever, chills, joint pain, muscle weakness, bone pain, migraines, shortness of breath, loss of muscle flexibility.
Of course, I finally started circling the drain of autoimmune disorders. All of the tests show that I should be healthy as a horse, including 2 ANA panels, pet scans, x rays, heigl (sp?) scan, upper GI scope (which showed inflammation)....everything but an MRI.
Some of the symptoms have dissipated with my taking diet/natural measures of my own and starting Gabapentin (for neuropathic pain.) Within 4 days of starting that I went from sleeping 14 hours a day and never able to get out of bed to my regular 4-7 hours a night with bouts of fatigue. Still have plenty of joint pain, bone pain, etc. I have a referral to a rheumatologist but haven't gotten a call from them yet.
My left foot has always had periods where it would hurt. I always said I had RA but never actually got any tests for it. When I flared up the foot pain was excruciating for a while before and has pretty much stayed that way. Yesterday the foot just kind of went dead. Not asleep or tingly, just like it wasn't there. I was also having constriction in my chest and pain in my left arm. I had the same thing a few days ago and my BP had ticked up 30 points. Yesterday it had gone up 20. My foot was cold, I'm always cold, but this was different. I could feel the cold moving up from my foot and into my left leg. Where the cold stopped there is now a bruise. My left knee also felt like it was kind of giving out. I guess this is called foot drop. I'm pretty savvy and was thinking I might have MS, but I'm almost sure now because the ER doctor mentioned it about 10 times in as many minutes. Today my foot is intermittently dead (I don't know how else to put it, it doesn't feel like it's there) but just the top half of my foot and it goes all the way up to and sometimes including my knee. Again, just the top half of the leg.
I know I need an MRI. The problem is, I'm on government insurance since I lost my job in the middle of my flare. So I have to sign up for this and that, be referred, get approval, ad nauseum. My concern is that these symptoms are signs of permanent damage and that delaying diagnosis and treatment may mean the difference between working again or not. Should I bide my time and if so, for how long? Should I make something happen faster and if so, how? In short, ***.