I have had a range of strange symptoms recently, some of which I have had on and off for about 10-15 years and I have started wondering whether it could be MS. I’m sure my GP thinks I’m a hypercondriac so I don’t want to go and present all these symptoms together unless there is at least a chance they could be connected. I’m in my mid 40’s.
My longest standing problem is dizzyness. I’ve had bouts of it for 10-15 years and have had two or three occasions over the last 3 years when the dizzyness has lasted for several weeks (most recently during the last few weeks). The dizzyness has been diagnosed (by my GP) as migraine with vertigo, although I have never had any tests for it. Inner ear problems have also been suggested in the past but never tested. I take Stemetil for it when it is really bad, although that does little more than take the edge off it. I sometimes get a feeling of stiffness in my neck and upper back which might be linked to the dizzyness (but the stiffness and dizzyness can each occur independently). When my neck feels stiff like that, there is nothing I can do to get it to relax (eg heat, massage etc).
Since November last year, I have had pains in my rib cage - mostly on one side but also sometimes on the other. The pain’s not there all the time but I get it most days, sometimes several times a day and often lasting an hour or so at a time. I have had loads of tests for this: blood tests, chest x-ray, ultasound and a CT colonoscopy (as I have a family history of bowel cancer) - nothing significant has shown up in any of these. Then, in the last few weeks, I have also had pains in my upper arms. The arm pain started the day after the CT scan, so I initially wondered if it could be caused by the contrast agent. I woke up and my upper arms were just really stiff, as though I had been weightlifting the day before. It gradually got better over the next couple of days but my upper arms have been sore and slightly ‘stiff feeling’ several times since then. Tonight, the skin around the stiff area on one side has started to itch really badly, too.
Thirdly, I have been feeling exceptionally tired for over a year now. I haven’t been sleeping well which contributes to the tiredness but its a vicious cycle: I’m really tired, so don’t function as well as I need to at work, so i get stressed and that causes more sleep problems etc. However, I also feel that not functioning well at work is something more than just the tiredness. I seem to find it hard to learn new things recently and I also keep forgetting things (like forgetting to go to meetings). I’ve been pretty depressed and anxious this last year as I just can’t seem to keep up with work in the way I expect myself to. Sometimes I really feel as though I’m losing my marbles.
Finally, I’ve dropped three things in the last month or so. I’ve dropped my toothbrush twice, while brushing my teeth and once I dropped a mug that I was washing up. I also managed to knock a cup of coffee over in a cafe last week.
Sorry to rabbit on for so long. I know that nobody on this forum can tell me if this is MS but I just wonder if anyone thinks it could be. When I first read about MS, I burst into tears because it seemed to sum up so many different things that I have experienced recently. In a way, it would be good to have a diagnosis that explained all this as I’ve been thinking it must all be in my head and its been driving me crazy. I know that the tiredness and forgetfulness could be tied up with stress at work and the dizzyness could be migraine with vertigo (as diagnosed) but I don’t have any explanation for the pains in my rib cage and upper arms.
Anyway, thanks for reading … any thoughts gratefully received!!!