Posted 7/22/2006 1:13 PM (GMT -7)
I'm new to this site. I used to be on the BrainTalk site until it went down, so it's nice to find some familiar names and friendly folks here.
I posted as a response to another thread last night, but thought I should introduce myself. My name is Lisa, I'm 45-years-old, newly married (going on 5 months now), and an assistant professor at a community college where I teach medical terminology, medical transcript ion, and Microsoft Office classes.
I started having some really weird symptoms about 6 weeks ago, which were actually just a new chapter in an ongoing list of strange symptoms. Below is the symptom list I created (had to do that so I wouldn't forget anything.) I'm sorry it's so long, but you know how it is.
Two or more years ago:
Restless leg syndrome
Has occurred off and on for several years
Feels like my legs muscles are twitching and like I need to kick them
Onset 10 years ago after auto accident
Stabbing horrendous pain in lower left occipital lobe
Frequency has increased from once every three to four months to every couple of weeks
Duration has increased to several hours/days in length
Dent in the base of my skull which is increasing in size.
Numbness and tingling in extremities
Several years duration, especially in arms and hands
Decrease in sense of smell and taste
Fatigue during the summer especially and often after a hot shower or bath
Numb chin and lip
Lip and chin on bottom right side tingling and numb, nerves feel hypersensitive
Right side of my tongue has started going numb as well within the past few weeks
Frequently can’t remember common words, it’ll be on the tip of my tongue, but I can’t say it
Sometimes substitute the wrong word totally
Lack of concentration and ability to understand concepts I once could master with no problems
Increased urination and decreased bladder control (urge and stress incontinence)
Alternating constipation and diarrhea, no matter what I eat
Large black spot in the center of my vision of both eyes when I’m in a dimly lit room
Blurriness in both eyes, especially after being over heated
Dizziness and vertigo
Spasms in my throat when trying to speak or read
Intense burning sensation in my upper right thigh
This sensation lasted for several days and has returned several times since, lasting a few days each time
Faint tremor in hands and arms and other muscles of body and face, almost like a constant vibration
Often causes my head to nod in a “yes” motion
Occurs when I’m resting or sometimes when I’m writing or trying to eat
Makes it difficult to sleep when my entire body is shaking
Husband noticed recently that I don’t articulate clearly like I did previously
Mouth and tongue often feel thick and clumsy
Often can’t pronounce words correctly, like my tongue gets tangled up or I run words together
Muscles in arms and legs feel that they have no strength, very weak, often too heavy to move
Difficult to move arms and legs at times
Fatigue is worse in hot weather or if I take a hot shower or bath (Noticed this last year in April)
Increasing muscle weakness – having difficulty picking up a gallon of milk, walking up stairs, opening doors
Even normal activities, such as cleaning house, working, shopping, having relations with my husband, etc., cause extreme fatigue which can last for days
Painful muscle spasms (Charlie horse sensations) in my legs, arms, shoulders, back, and sometimes face
Flashing lights, especially in my peripheral vision
Notice a “jumpiness” in vision, like my eyes are jittery, difficulty focusing on anything
I just noticed this summer that I do not sweat at all, not even in the most intense heat
Numbness and tingling
Recently having numbness and tingling in both feet and legs (in addition to arms and hands) and often in my face on one side or the other
Just generally feel ill and uncharacteristically exhausted and fatigued.
Okay, if you made it through that list, here's the rest of the story.
I had a consultation with a neurologist several weeks ago, and during the neuro exam, the doctor noted lateral nystagmus, dysarthria, slow reflex response in my ankles, and a present Babinski reflex in my left foot. The doctor strongly suspected MS from these findings and from my symptoms and sent me for testing.
I had the usual blood tests ruling out RA, B12 deficiency, Lyme disease, diabetes, etc. I had three evoked potential tests (visual, auditory, and somatosensory), and a brain (not spinal) MRI to try to diagnose whatever is going on with me. Everything except one of the sensory evoked potentials tests came back normal. (Oh, and it was noted that I also had primary "empty sella syndrome", which is a benign condition which doesn't normally cause any symptoms.)
Interestingly enough, when the results came back from all of these tests, the neurologist had the nurse call me and tell me that everything was normal, I didn't have MS, there was nothing else he could do, and I didn't need to see him again. End of conversation. No mention as to any follow-up for my symptoms (even though I asked and told the nurse that the symptoms were getting worse), no mention of the abnormal evoked potential in my left leg (I had gotten a copy of all the reports earlier, or I wouldn't have known about the delayed signal to my left foot) or present Babinski reflex or what they might mean, no help at all.
I now have an appointment with a second neurologist who was recommended on a list on the BrainTalk boards August 9. I hope she can help me because this whole ordeal and the problems I am having are seriously interferring with my work and with my personal life. (My husband thinks I'm crazy since the neurologist didn't find anything wrong, and that it's all in my head!)
Anyway, thanks for hanging in there until the end of this long post. I'm sure I will have questions for you all as time goes on.