I have noticed when reading posts about MS fears, not just in this forum but other forums as well, that people will discuss their symptoms, fears and upcoming tests such as MRIs, but rarely come back to the forum to report the outcomes of their tests. I wish that they would. I think it would help.
On that note, what happened to Pan? Pan had written a couple of inspirational posts a few years back. I would love to hear where Pan is at currently with regards to symptoms.
I'm more than happy to oblige. I sincerely hope that it helps many of you who went through what I did.
This time last year, I had serious, debilitating concerns of MS that utterly tortured my mind.
These were my symptoms:Physical:
- Muscles jerking, spasms, or "pulsing" visibly in my limbs and hands.
- Frequent "pins and needles" sensations in hands, arms, legs and feet.
- Difficulty standing up (especially in mornings) - sometimes making breakfast, I would be over-come with a feeling of incredible physical weakness like I was being "pulled down", I would get stars in my vision, feel like I was going to pass out, even if I was simply preparing food, I would need to sit down until I would be able to proceed.
- Bad co-ordination, especially when walking down the stairs. (I would need to actually conscious think about which leg to put front of the other before doing it)
- Intense fatigue: I could just sleep and rest in bed all day without doing anything. Getting up and out of bed was very hard.
- "Pressure pains" in my head.
- "Tingly" numbness in my thighs that I first noticed when shaving my legs... I couldn't feel the razor when it was on my thighs.
- The same "tingly" numbness in my left cheek / side of my face and mouth / lip area. Psychological:
- Terrible brain fog - to the point where I could stare straight ahead for hours and hours on end with NO thought passing through my mind.
- Awful concentration. Reading was hard.
- Slowed thinking (this kinda goes hand-in-hand with the brain fog) - I felt like my thoughts were moving in extreme slow motion.
- The above two combined felt like my brain was giving me this kind of "self-induced mediation with extremely slow breathing" (as I described at the time in notes I handed to the docs).
- Intense anxiety, nerves, and a feeling of "doom".
Oh, I also have internuclear ophthalmoplegia (one-and-a-half syndrome) - which, from what I can tell on Wikipedia and such - is something with strong association to MS.
It got to the point where I had a break down at my family docs office. I handed over my list of symptoms to him, then promptly burst into tears. I cried so hard that my nose started bleeding, which made me freak out even more so I just cried out "What is happening to me?!
" I told him that I wanted and needed to die quickly, and hopefully 0473 before my MS got any worse.
It feels almost embarrassing now for me to say that, but I was in such serious terror my doc called for an ambulance to take me to Accident and Emergency. I remember my doctor (who has known me since I was a baby) was almost trembling, and he raised his voice and said "You DO NOT have MS!!!"... Of course, this did not do anything to convince me otherwise, so he referred me to a neurologist.
I was also put on a Crisis Watch team (a whole 'nother story of Hell in and of itself which resulted in me sending an official complaint because of the team members said I needed to "get a life" - I was suicidal).
Anyhow. The neuro I saw was wonderful. He could see that I was so nervous, but I underwent an MRI scan of my brain and neck. He immediately sent for me to be put on meds that help calm anxiety (which I ended up not taking because I'm so skeptical about meds harming me).
My scan came back (a long time later!) - better than perfect. I was absolutely shocked. Apparently I have a big, healthy brain with no signs of anything wrong with it at all. I remember him joking to me "There is so much brain in your head there is no room for anything else! Is this a problem for you?" I was ecstatic. He said that further investigation for MS in me was no longer necessary.
Since then, my symptoms have been completely relieved and my MS fears are gone. I am now sure that the symptoms I was experiencing were a product of stress, anxiety and nerves. Those three things can wreck HAVOC with you. Also, the more I thought about MS, the more I read up about the symptoms, the more I felt I had MS, and the more MS symptoms I actually began to experience!! So please, please, please never
underestimate the power of anxiety - it can fool you so, so much into thinking you have something you may not have and actually mimic
I sincerely hope this might help someone who might be experiencing the fear I was going through last year.